Of all the words that could be used to describe this past year, I don’t think “memorable” would be the first one that comes to most people’s minds. “Shit show” is two words but is probably the most accurate description. 2021 hasn’t started in quite the positive manner that we might have hoped for but there is at least some cause for optimism. Some.
Recently I came across a post from Sam at stressedmum talking about some of her highs and lows of 2020 and thought it would be interesting to see how my daughter, one of the most positive people that I’ve ever come across, would answer the questions.
What was your happiest event? Her first response was “not getting Covid” but after some reflection decided that finally getting her birthday party was her favorite day. Her birthday is in May but at that time the whole world was pretty locked down and isolated. We’ve since returned to that point but in August the numbers had dipped enough that we felt comfortable having a small number of friends over for a pool and ice cream party. If somebody wants to call that irresponsible I’d have no argument but it was one of the highlights of her year.
What was the saddest thing that happened? For her, like many of us lucky enough to have not lost anyone to the disease, it was all of the things that she missed out on. Amusement parks, roller skating, going to the movies, Girl Scout Camp. As much as we tried to keep her in touch with her friends this was a tough year for such a social child.
What did you learn? How to draw. One of the things that she spends a lot of time doing now is watching You-Tube tutorials about drawing. She then creates characters and creates extensive backstories for them. She’s pretty proud of how much better she is now than when she started, with good reason. She’s put in a lot of practice time and it shows.
What made you cry? Chester and Willy. Our pet bunny and my parent’s dog both passed. These were her first two experiences with death on any sort on a personal level. The life expectancy for an American has now dropped by a full year so I’m going actually going to look at this as a positive. As sad as the loss of a pet can be there are a lot of people that have suffered much worse than we have.
What made you laugh? Anytime I was with my friends. We made every effort to keep our germ circle small but there were several of her best friends whose families we trusted to also be acting in a reasonably responsible manner. The couple of times a month that she was able to socialize were some of her happiest. I’m a borderline introvert and even I miss being around others. I can’t imagine how hard it’s been for those that actually like people.
What would you like to change about your life in 2021? I want to keep exercising and get healthier. This one raised a few red flags for me as I interpreted it to mean that she wants to lose weight. She’s always been a bigger girl and it’s something that is challenging to address. We spend a lot of time outside, including a three-mile bike ride today, but also stopped for wings and mozzarella sticks afterward. I need to be supportive of her desire to be healthy while also making sure that she remains happy with her appearance. This is only going to get harder as she gets older.
As for me? I’ve had worse years to be honest. 2020 sucked but was still better than 2017. I miss live music and my Thursday night pool league but for the most part not a whole lot changed for me. I’m aware that I’m very fortunate to be able to say so. I spent most of it either floating on my kayak or hiking. Recently I’ve gotten back into mountain biking. I’m thinking that 2021 will feature a lot of the same.
I’m a few weeks late but Happy New Year all.
Previously Published on thirstydaddy.com