Something good did happen this year, in this cursed 2020. In fact, several good things happened and to save myself from giving up on humanity, I have decided to list them. These are all my own personal joys; I’m sure there are some societal positives out there, but I don’t have the energy to go digging, and digging would be necessary.

#1 My son has started talking. He has the sweetest little voice, and his growing vocab is so fun to observe. “Mailman!” is his most frequently screamed word (he’s obsessed, and is going to be a mailman for Halloween, with an official USPS costume and everything!). “Kank you,” is my favorite phrase of his, which he says often.

#2 One of my absolute best friends, who had moved away years ago, has moved back in town! We get to hug and dance and have play dates with our kids! It’s amazing!

#3 Friends of ours who have struggled with infertility for years have conceived and heard their baby’s heartbeat! Hallelujah!

#4 Aside from one awful week, we had a blissfully smoke-free summer in the PNW and got to enjoy lots of outdoor time. I took the early days of my unemployment to go on loooong, long walks while the kids napped/TV’d and my husband was working from home. Those long walks in the early spring/summer days, listening to encouraging, informative, and/or thought-provoking podcasts gave me a lot of life.

#5 Stemming from #4 and from being out in the yard so often, we’ve become friends with more of our neighbors! Two families in particular, with young kids close to our kids age, have been so great to get to know. It is super convenient to have fun people to hang out with within walking distance of our house 🙂

#6 My husband’s business is picking up a lot of momentum and looks to have its best year to date. It’s been so encouraging to watch all his hard work starting to pay off.

#7 My son finally got his molars, which honestly makes feeding him so much easier. He was super late getting teeth, so it’s extra appreciated now that he’s got them.

#8 I’ve been making new friends from starting my own business. Networking can be exhausting and overwhelming at times, but I’ve become actual friends with people I’ve met, which is a real treat. Making friends as an adult with someone you truly choose to make the effort with is so fulfilling.

#9 Opening my clinic has changed my mindset, invigorated me in my desire to learn and grow within my profession, and sparked my creativity in ways I didn’t anticipate. As BrenĂ© Brown perfectly says, “You’ll also wonder how you can feel so brave and so afraid at the same time. At least that’s how I feel most of the time…Brave, afraid, and very, very alive.”

#10 I finally got my pop-up camper that I’ve been wanting since the minute we got pregnant with our first child (over 4 years ago). It’s been on two maiden voyages now, and it is the best. I get so excited thinking about the trips we’ll take all over the Pacific Northwest and beyond with this baby.

#11 My daughter’s personality is emerging more and more, and is such a delight to watch. She is so creative, loves crafting and has illustrated multiple books now, and is trying to be funny (her one joke is “How do you make a tissue dance? Put a little boogey in it!” and is getting hard to keep laughing at with any semblance of genuine laughter). She overhears us listening to NPR and made her own “black people matter” signs for the yard without any prompting. She loves her brother, is affectionate, reasonable (as in, I can reason with her using logic and she can put off instant gratification), brave, friendly, and has the attention span to listen to 200+ page chapter books read aloud to her.

#12 The avocado tree that my daughter and I grew from an ordinary, grocery store avocado seed is THRIVING! Which is a huge relief, because I put a ton of pressure on that little seed to be the symbolic foreshadowing of how my fledgling new business would do. It’s looking like a good omen so far!

2020 has been rough. Personally, societally, and globally. I am normally an obnoxious optimist, and even I have struggled with staying positive or hopeful. I’ve honestly had some of the darkest thoughts/moments that I can recall in my life. But I keep telling myself that humanity has been through some rough waters before and made it through. Somewhere I heard or read (maybe it was Lisa Sharon Harper?) that we are witnessing the death throes of white supremacy. One can only hope. Fingers crossed that 2021 takes a massive pivot for the better.

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