A search for some of the good to come out of this year.
I have a confession to make. I may be responsible for this whole mess of a pandemic. It was completely unintended, but alas, I must take responsibility. As a self-help fanatic, I read everything I can get my hands on that contains advice on improving your life. I've been increasingly interested in manifestation. At its most simplified definition, manifestation is sending positive vibes out into the Universe while clearly stating what you want out of life. Your positive vibes act as a sort of magnet to pull the good things you desire into your life.
Nathalie Guerin wrote an article on the topic that listed the following steps to use manifestation to reach your goals.
To explain how we got from this list to a pandemic, I must go back in time. All the way back to November 2019. It was the start of your average holiday season, too much to do and buy, too little time and money. My oldest child returned home from college for the break, my middle child was juggling community college and a new job. My youngest was preparing to perform in the Nutcracker Ballet. I was substituting as a Math teacher at a special education school. My husband and I were planning a holiday recital for our music school. Of course, in between these obligations, there were family parties, work parties, friend parties, fundraisers, plays, and concerts. There was correcting, lesson planning, driving, volunteering, shopping, baking, decorating, and wrapping to do.
Tired yet? I was done. I am a natural homebody and would rather chew my own foot off rather than leave my house most days. And I was NEVER home. I was in the car, at school, at work, at second work, I was TIRED. This is the point, dear reader, and I do apologize in advance; this is the point where I sent my wish out into the Universe. I wished for it all to stop.
What I actually said was, "I need a snow day. But I would like it to last for a month or more and for there not to be any actual snow. I would just like everything to close down, and no one can go anywhere for some reason."
Yes. I said it. Sent it directly into the Universe with all the hope and positivity I could muster. And --four months later-- we shut down for a pandemic. A pandemic is not what I meant! Be careful what you wish for; it just might come true. Now, my life is not usually such movie material. I've never actually shut down the world before. But I have to say, there are parts of 2020 life that I would like to keep moving forward. Here are my thoughts on the services and perks we should continue post-vaccine.
Class of 2020
Most Likely To Succeed--Grocery Home and Drive Up Delivery
As an aspiring reclusive, grocery shopping has always been the day of the week that I most hate my life. (Usually, the only day I hate my life, I'm generally a positive person.) The crowds, the overwhelming choices (do we really need that many kinds of cereal?), the lines, the freaking self-checkout terminal! Yeah, I don't love grocery shopping in a typical year. The fear of getting sick this year had me trying all other options. And I fell in love. Online shopping for groceries is great! Although options have been limited due to shipping issues caused by the pandemic, in more normal times, options should be plentiful. Comparing costs online before purchasing is much less stressful than trying to accomplish the same task in a store. Delivery service has changed my life. I love it so much. I no longer dread grocery day, and we save tons of money by avoiding impulse purchases. Yes, sometimes they forget all your refrigerated foods, and you have to go back. Other times you may come home with vegan mac and cheese or baby formula when your youngest is 13, but hey, nobody's perfect. It still beats the alternative.
I know, I know. You hate masks. We all do. But hear me out. Flu season. Am I right? Visualize with me... You are entering the crowded gymnasium at your child's/sister's/friend's elementary school for the Christmas Band Concert. It is the height of flu season. The bleachers are full, as are all the folding chairs loaded onto the basketball court. You lean against the cinderblock wall next to the child that has not yet learned to sneeze into her elbow. Don't you wish you had a mask? Maybe now that mask-wearing is being grudgingly accepted as medically efficient, it will become acceptable to wear them during other infectious seasons or in close quarters. Or at least when visiting gramps at the nursing home. You also can't beat masks for going out in public incognito. A face mask and some sunglasses, and I'm feeling confident despite my sweatpants and unwashed hair.
Best Celebrity Look a Like--Also Masks
I'm not a celebrity, but I would imagine masks have made their lives a lot easier. It must be hard to be recognized everywhere you go and never be able to be invisible. Wearing masks makes everyone blend in, and I bet they love it. Not that we should continue masks forever for celebrities' sakes. It just occurred to me, so I thought I'd mention it.
Class Clown--Our Pets
All I can say is, thank god for pets this year! My dogs, Paco and Lola, have served as nude models (they took off their collars!), therapists, personal trainers, sous chefs, and comedic relief throughout this pandemic. Lola does a killer Baby Yoda impression. They have dropped in on marketing meetings, tutoring sessions, music lessons, college lectures, middle school, and ballet classes, all from the comfort of our home and courtesy of zoom. Pets are the unsung heroes of 2020.
Biggest Flirt--Online Medical Appointments
One of the things I was happy to switch over to this year is online doctor visits. Having some chronic conditions, I have specialists that are out of town. Doctor visits are required every three months but are extremely short, sometimes just 5 minutes. This means a 40-minute drive, 10-minute wait for the doctor, 5 minutes with the doctor, and a 40-minute drive home. Online appointments have totally lived up to the hype with one caveat, there is usually something--a test, bloodwork--that you still need to go in for. For this reason, online medical appointments win the Biggest Flirt superlative. They let you stay home, almost.
Most Changed -- Parties
While I love people and connecting one on one, I find crowds to be exhausting. The parties of 2020, limited to about 12 people, have been just right for me. I love the casual feel getting together took this summer and fall, meeting outdoors, and gathering around a campfire. Meeting friends and taking a hike together. It gave us more of a chance to talk meaningfully than if we went to a movie or something we would do pre-covid.
Best All-Around -- Essential Workers
Obviously, our Class of 2020 Best All-Around goes to all our essential workers. The extraordinary courage that essential workers showed this year (and always, really) is just overwhelming. We owe a debt to our health care workers, store clerks, grocery workers, mail delivery people, everyone that put themself at risk to help others this year. I humbly bow to you all. You give me hope that good will come out of this year.
With all that said, I hope you found at least some good from this past year. I recommend that in 2021 you try manifesting your goals, send those dreams out into the Universe carefully. I've started to be really specific. I've been sending out my desire for better sleep lately. Just yesterday, I won a new Nectar bed on Instagram. Coincidence? I don't think so.