What I learned in 2020

The past year has been a master class in sociology. By definition sociology is the systematic study of the development, structure, interaction, and collective behavior of organized groups of human beings. Behavior stands out to me in the definition. We can learn a lot about ourselves in how we behaved during this pandemic. Under stressful times, we learn who we are, what we are capable of and of course a lot about others in our lives. The collective behavior of organized groups of human beings being the last and one of the most important aspects of the pandemic – the essential workers. There is no doubt this group pulled together into subgroups and made all our lives better. We have much to be thankful for.

In my log of early 2020, my friend in California sent me messages about a virus going around China and I should prepare for this; I wasn’t sure what to think. She’s not a whacko, paranoid or a conspiracy theorist. But she was working in hospitals and researching what was going on around the world. I paid attention and soon after the reports were flooding the news. Looking back, it seems like ages but also just yesterday. How is that even possible? The ship set sailed and we lost sight of the horizon so quickly.

Now at the end of 2020 and on the threshold of global vaccination, I’m trying to process all the waves of change during this time; politically, financially, socially and of course personally.

My feeling is that we are on the brink of great change. Historically there has been substantial pain during times of evolution. My hope is that when historians of the future look back to this time, they will see a modern renaissance in life and how we began to really move forward toward equality and unity. That all the events, bad and good, that occurred in 2020 were catalysts for change and toward equity. We are setting the course.

Personally, I learned a lot about myself. I conclude that I miss dining out and traveling yet I can also appreciate my home and my blessings there. I read more, watched some awesome TV, cooked delicious meals, did A LOT of dishes and balanced work and downtime. I learned how to publish a book, use social media better and unleashed pent-up creativity that was aching to swan dive from a cliff. It’s what happens when you slow down. Life ends with a breath but also begins with one.

I witnessed some relationships appreciate; yet some depreciated. The year 2020 forced off shore stormy emotions to finally erupt. Spending or not spending time with another forced us to peer into the looking glass and behold the lore.

I learned that I can get pretty creative with meals, workouts and at-home lounge wear. I also learned it’s all about eyes and brows in a masked up world and You Tube has great tutorials for that and just about anything.

I learned that you can be alone and still feel connected to your friends, family and the world through social media, apps and Zoom. But I also learned that people need people. We are social and thrive best when we are together building something meaningful, helping others and having fun collectively. When this is over, I will never take that for granted again. To see another, hug another, dance with another, cry with another and share with another will be the best gift of 2021.

Who will I be when I emerge after 2020? I will be part of the biggest sociological experiment the likes of which civilization has never recorded before. I hope we leave an imprint, a brochure, a playbook of how to be a better person; a kinder human. A future page in a study of collective human behavior that will astound even the most skeptical of humanity. The Captains log 2020 is filled with unchartered experience and is the page in history waiting to be read, scrutinized and astonished.

Bon voyage 2020.

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