Updated: Jan 2, 2021
I have mixed emotions saying good bye to 2020. A historic year when all was shown. Glad to see it go, while still in shock by all that has been revealed. This year when things came to a head. When the unthinkable happened. A pandemic that scientists had predicted for years. How quickly we forgot the warnings.
I feel saddened, while I feel wide awake.
Yesterday marking the end of 2020. The beginning of the end of a once in 100 year scenario. One that has ravaged our economy, our lives as we knew them. A time where we were kept separated from our family, our friends, our school, our sports. The vaccine on the horizon. The possible return to school for my son's next year. The beginning of a whole new life. How we do things. How we move forward.
How we go on to normal when all has been visible. When the genie has been let out of the bottle. How we come back together when the core of who we are has been exposed. When the selfishness of our human nature has come to the front. When the disregard for life has been shown. When science was denied and conspiracies have run amuck. When history was ignored, fear was ignited and rationale tossed aside. Where things were considered true because they were spoken and truth was hidden as proof of loyalty. After history has shown us what can happen going down this road. When history taught us what side to be on, yet some still choose not to follow. With blame being pointed and realities being doubted.
Some only focused on the impact of their own life, instead of unifying a scared, damaged nation. Instead of seeing we were all in this together, we were living history, all in a pandemic that none could control, all suffering in some way, yet we became further apart.
A once in a century debacle. As some have shown their lack of consideration. Their unwillingness to try. Their lack of understanding. Their unwillingness to transform in a consequential time. Refusing to change for the benefit of our country and for the health of others. Due to the inconvenience it may cause them. Too used to a life style to attempt to change for the greater good. A disease exposing what and who they care about. After showing what and who they didn't. As Americans starve. Jobs are lost. Democracy in question.
All too much to ever unsee again. Something I will never be able to brush under the rug.
A virus. A denial of racial equality. An economic breakdown. An educational crisis. Religions claiming the importance of economy over the lives of poor, elderly or sick. Claiming natural selection while denying evolution exists. Preaching we should go for herd immunity without any understanding of what that would entail. No care for the lives lost, the hospital overload, the trauma it would cause, the families it would destroy, the emotional damage it would do for the next generation or our medical staff. While betraying our health care and front line workers who save us as they receive little to no regard. Just so they could go back to their comfort as a monumental moment asks us to do better. A hypocrisy in the highest regard.
Screaming kids should be back in school with no visualization of what that would look like. With zero to no regard of what the long term effects of what a virus can do. As some are getting reinfected. As time has shown a virus is not something that just comes and goes. HPV causes cancer. Chicken pox causes shingles. Herpes causes repeated outbreaks. Viruses that linger in the body. That cause an effect later in life. All of which we know because these viruses have been around for years. Because they have been studied. We have no idea the long term effects of a new, mutating virus on our children or the lives of their teachers. The staff. The spread it may cause. Every body it passes through causing a greater chance of another mutation. Yet, some don't care.
Only focused on the changes, the inconvenience it has temporarily caused in their lives. While others feel the permanency. Of losing a loved one, or becoming a long hauler. Unable to get or keep a job because of the health problems they still deal with. The cognitive fog. The mysterious blood clots that have arisen. The fatigue they can't seem to shake.
I am saddened, but wide awake.
The hypocrisy has been glaring. Speaking volumes to those who listen. As Senators who have spoken out against wearing a mask jump the line to take the vaccine for a disease they swore had little impact and nothing to fear. As people are misled with misinformation. Purposefully misdirected to tell you what they know you want to hear instead of the facts you should be told. Proving their popularity trumps the peoples health and lives.
As people continue to deny the racism that runs so deep within our country yet some don't want to listen or turn a blind eye. Unwilling to look. To reflect within themselves. That systematically is how some have been taught, so they don't realize it's even there, or can see it is wrong. Accepting it was a way you have been taught, a fault not your own but a responsibility that needs be taken. In order for change. In order for equality. To hear the pain the oppression has caused. The voices screaming out in a desperate attempt to get others to understand. To teach us. To show another's reality. Denying their truth while clenching to a privilege some don't want to lose.
I can never unsee what has been shown. Shining, blaring like a ray of light in the gruesome darkness of 2020.
They have stood out. These irrational voices. Louder amongst the others. Those who continue to socially gather without a care of who they spread it to. Only basking in their luck of being asymptomatic, able to recover or too ignorant to see the potential blood on their hands. With no thought of another. A family and the impact they might cause. Not treating our neighbor as thyself. Exposing we are not our brothers keeper. This year has proven that disregard to our youth in this historical atmosphere. .
I'm saddened, but wide awake.
Watching the anger spread quicker than the disease. Seeing the anger and wrath that comes within people I knew. People who were once friends. Who were family. Denying the pain, the poverty, as homeless and evictions grow, as a dispute over a meager stimulus arises. Questioning if the tax payers money should go back to the hand that paid it. The hand that is in desperate need of its return. The hands that wait for hours in a food line they never had to wait in before. As some only remain focused on their own inconveniences instead of the lives they are putting on the line.
We all have lost a lot this year. Some more than others. Most of all, we have lost the blanket of denial. A lot has been exposed. The year the genie was let out of the bottle to linger into the next. But the truth still remains, that we are all in this together. All of our lives have changed in one way or another. We still have the chance to come together. To become our brothers keeper. Today marking the start of something new. A new year, with a new outlook, a new way of being. Like a light amid the darkness. Within the chaos, we have been given time. Time to be still. To reflect. To spend with our households and loved ones. Time to think what side we want to be on. What we want our future to look like. What we want to show and teach the next generation. How we want to be.
I say goodbye to 2020 with mixed emotions. A permanent stamp on our history books. One that the world will reflect on. Our choices. Our thoughts. Our lack of empathy or our ability and the way we came together. History will record misguided information that led to such confusion, division and fear or it will record a truth that caused unity. It will record a year we believed in conspiracies or a time we saw the facts through the noise. A time when some isolated while others refused. A year when people stayed connected over technology or zoom. A year when fear was heightened, anger was exposed and hopefully love will prevail. Seeing things in each other we might not have ever seen other wise. A new year when all is our choice. A year that has left me saddened, but wide awake.