So… 2020

Like here’s the awful thing about this year: I don’t need to tell you. You get it. Every single one of you knows exactly what I’m talking about.

And, I don’t want to tempt fate, but just when you think it can’t get worse? Oh, it can.

It’s funny, because for the past… I think 4 years or so, my best friend and writing soul mate have had this hopeful thing we do to reassure one another. “Next year will be better. I mean, it can’t be worse.” And every year… we are wrong.

But never were we wrong like this year. I told her, “You know, I think we’re jinxing ourselves. We really can’t say that anymore. Like… I don’t want to see next year try to prove us wrong.”

Ok, so that’s my bit of complaining. Moving on. I’ve been thinking a lot, because, if nothing else, this –all of this– has illustrated to me that its time to double down and live. Because as awful as this has been, there have been some really sweet spots, too. I have no idea–in ways I never realized I didn’t know–what tomorrow will bring. None of us do. I mean, we never did, but at least we had the illusion, right?

So, the blindfold is gone. I am left with a purpose, to come back to you, whoever is reading me, to come back to me, because that’s who the story is for in the beginning. To come back. But more on that next month.

I am also left with clarity. For years, I’ve read about branding and marketing and blah blah blah. And what I always took from it was that branding was being genuine, being one’s self.

I’m one of those people that struggles to be comfortable being myself. I’m not fake. I just don’t open up and let people know me. So, obviously, being genuinely me was a struggle. But, I’m done with that.

And, if it did nothing else, 2020 has given me the loss of all my fucks. (I curse. That’s me being real, y’all.) My new mantra is: be real and be kind. Hopefully, I can do both of those things at once. Right now, if I had to choose, I’d lean toward being kind because, as I mentioned, this has been a shit year for everyone. It doesn’t have to be huge. Say thank you. Tip a little extra if I can. Tell people, “It’s okay,” when they get flustered on the phone with me (because I personally hate having to call people so if I can make that suck less for either of us, I will).

Be real and be kind.

It’s not much from 46 years on Earth and living through, well, I’ve lost count of the awful things that happened this year. But it’s what I’ve got. And I think I’m on to something.

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