2020 wasn't all bad
Today, as I was preparing for my radio program, I started to think about 2020 and how it had gotten such a bad reputation. Of course, the reputation was earned. We had so much social discord, a pandemic to deal with, and what seemed like the unraveling of decency. All around us, people were divided, and violently so. The media, which feeds on the frenzy, threw chum in the water to excite the swimming sharks into a bloodthirsty rage. It seemed like everything of the year was sensationalized towards fear and mistrust. However, there must have been some bright moments in the 365 days of 2020. Since most of it was spent in lockdown or at home, I'm sure it's hard for some people to remember what those moments were. Try to think. What were your happiest or most memorable times in 2020?
Although many of these posts have been marked by the negative experiences in my life I have not been frozen in a negative world. That is the point of telling the story. I'm setting the context for you to see the roads that I took to get here in more detail. Although my childhood started roughly, my Guardian Angel saw that I could rise above it and move forward. She guided me, ever so gently, past the allure of quick money and crazy ghetto schemes. She helped me find a path that I would eventually be proud to walk. The story is not over yet. Some of it will get darker before it begins to brighten. I am not afraid to tell it. I just others won't try to stop me from doing it.
I recently found that many people live with the burden of shame. They're constantly concerned about what others will think or say behind their backs. This shame begins to overcloud their lives as they try to mold themselves to fit social expectations while strangling away their real selves. I learned long ago that less could be gained from hardship faced alone. Only through the strength of friends and community can we continue to rise. However, that community is a community of people who are supportive and not part of a community that wants to tear us down. Yes, there will always be rumor spreaders. Even in the best of times, there's always someone waiting to stick a foot out so that you can trip and fall. But, as long as you notice the foot, you should be OK.
I am getting off track. The purpose of this post is to think about 2020 and focus on the beautiful things that happen during our most challenging year. I think, because of the lockdown, I could spend more time with my family. We had a beautiful opportunity to cook paella by the sea and watch the sunset together. We also had wonderful conversations around great meals. We all love good food. All of these moments meant something. They were the light that helped guide me through the darkness. Long after I have forgotten everything else, those memories will remain.
This photo was taken from a rooftop party held outdoors in 2020. I imagine the man in the picture is living one of his memorable moments from that year.