Why 2020 Is Exactly The Type Of Year We Needed

Jan 31, 2021

We’re already four weeks into 2021 yet in many ways it feels like we are still trapped in 2020. The new year started off with a bang, literally with an attempted coup d’etat orchestrated by Trump defenders on January 6, 2021, bringing violence to the doors of the U.S. Capitol only one week into the new year.

Fourteen days later, number forty-five is no longer in office and a new president (President Joseph Biden) has been sworn in along with the first-ever African American and South Asian woman, Vice President Kamala Harris, as Mr. Biden’s number two. At the very least, I think it’s safe to say that things can’t get much worse than the chaos that has taken place over the last 4 years under the Trump Administration.

But yet, like many of y’all, I’m holding my breath.

Politics aside we are still neck-deep in a pandemic. Unemployment, homelessness, social injustice, and civic unrest is at an all-time high in this country. Even though we have all of this on our plates all at the same time, not to mention whatever is going on in our personal lives, we still find a way to keep pushing forward. The new year brings new (and renewed) resolutions with the aim of scratching them off our list, one goal at a time.

But, my friends, these are challenging times. Trust me, I know it’s hard, but this is what dreams are made of. Now is not the time to throw in the towel. It would be so easy for us to blame everything on society. No one would blame you if you put it all on the pandemic or lack of money or opportunities as to why this year will end up the same as 2020. But deep down we both know that is a lie. If 2020 taught us anything, it taught us how to be resourceful and how to adapt. In reality, we should be happy that we went through an extremely tough period in 2020 because it made us stronger.

And we will need to dig deeper and use that strength to propel us to higher heights in 2021 and beyond.

Truth be told, it’s been a long, draining 11 months and counting. We are still maneuvering through this quarantine life which doesn’t feel like much of a life at all. It’s nothing like we have been accustomed to all these years. The media outlets and health experts are trying to convince us that this is the “new normal” but we know there is nothing normal about this. Add to it our constant war on racism and other -isms that, for decades, have continued to poison our country and divide us further and further apart during a time when we should be standing together. There is only so much we can take. Frankly, both our mental and physical health is at stake. So much is going on all around us. So much pain and uncertainty. But with this pain and uncertainty comes an opportunity to turn these tragedies into triumph. And this is why I say 2021 will be our best year yet.

If we can make it through all of this there is nothing we can’t do. There is absolutely no excuse.

2020 forced us to make our way out of no way. So why continue to tell ourselves lies and make excuses for not going back to school to get that degree, finally starting that business, getting our first book published, or any other number of things we could list? The only one stopping us is us. If a worldwide pandemic and civic uprising (at the same time) hasn’t derailed us yet, why are we continue to stand in our own way? At this point, we should be pushing aside our fears and not even giving them another thought. All that we went through in one year alone has made us that much more resilient. We are sharper in ways we never could have imagined.

We are stronger, we are wiser, we are better.

This is why I say that 2020 was the best thing that could have happened to us. We were able to take a step back, reset, and redistribute our energies and focus on what is really important. Our health, our family, our friends, our communities, and, last but not least, our dreams. 2020 gave us the opportunity to slow down and cut out a lot of the distractions that kept us trapped in the same unfulfilling and/or destructive cycles for many years. This is our shot to finally let go of the past and take hold of the future we want for ourselves. There is no time like the present, even if we are still punching our way through the extended version of 2020.

At some point, this thriller will come to an end. The question remains will we go back and replay the past or ride off into the promising future?

Only time will tell.

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1 Comment

  1. Cheryl L Brown-Mitchell

    Hey Bob..it’s your Mom, it was a very good read. Very thought-out and articulate. Yes, things can only get better in the times to come. With a little faith, hope and courage we can look forward and toward a brighter future. There is a brighter tomorrow if we have patience in waiting and keep an open view.


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