I spent so much of 2019 dreaming about you. I had such great dreams and plans for this glorious time. When you arrived on New Years day I was more sick than ever before. Should I have known then? A week later, I received an IV of fluids in the emergency clinic because of my body’s instability and dehydration. I dropped pounds I couldn’t afford to lose before a scheduled IVF transfer. I force fed myself for months to try and gain some weight back in constant fear of passing out. I thought January may just be a rough start. 2020, I should have known you were going to give me a run for my money. You were difficult from the start.
Then the shots began for our IVF frozen embryo transfer. My body constantly turned on me, warped by the drugs and hormone injections, making it difficult to stand most days. I powered through and looked ahead with so much hope. The spring will be brighter! We will travel to London after this is all over, or so I thought.
We canceled a Floridan adventure the first week in March because I just didn’t feel right about going. That week the global pandemic was declared as well as a national state of emergency. My gut feeling didn’t seem so silly then. I’m glad I wasn’t thousands of miles away from Jo when all of this happened, but I didn’t realize I was giving up my last shot at a vacation for the year. The rest unfolds like an unbelievable end of the world novel.
All the events of this year have been beyond challenging. No one has been untouched by the tragedy, rawness, and weight this year has invited.
In reflection, I am faced with the truth of what hardship brings out of people. Hardship makes us cling to what really matters and reveals our most authentic selves. Hardship uncovers the beauty that unintentionally gets buried in the everyday. Hardship is what makes life so damn beautiful.
This year has made us cry, it has caused us to ache, it has brought discomfort no one could have predicted. But with it, this year has brought beauty, connection, and a necessary pause.
When I look at my camera roll from the last six months, I don’t see anything but beauty. Even on the days I knew were the hardest and darkest I remember them with a smile, even the tearful moments. Thinking “Wow, I survived this. and I am more in tune with myself because of it.”.
2020, You have brought your worst. You have brought truths we didn’t want to address. You have invited the ugly that we did not want to see and made us sit with it.
I thank you for your blunt and unapologetic self. I thank you for showing me who I am and who I would like to become. I thank you for forcing me to sit with the discomfort that lives inside of me and my world. I thank you for showing me what I want to work to change in me, in my home, and in my community.
2020, You have changed me in the deepest way. Through tears and anger, I am learning to rebuild what I am and how I show up in the world.
When this catastrophic year comes to a close, I’d like to believe we will all be better for leaning into the discomfort that is has brought. I hope we all stand a little taller on new year’s eve knowing that we are wiser having battled through such a journey as this together. We are mightier that we know, but after this year we all have a glimpse of what we are able to withstand.
This year, we have done hard things. We are capable of so much more. On the dark days when we are tired and beat down by the challenges that have been brought to our doorstep, I move to lean in to the discomfort. Invite it in and sit with it, allowing it to change your heart and mind. Embrace the ugly so it can show you your beautiful.