I wasn’t sure whether to write this post or not, particularly as so many people have bigger problems. However, everyone’s feelings are valid. We should be able to talk about what we’re feeling and experiencing without judgement. I’m sure I’m not the only one that has mixed feelings about 2020.
For me 2020 was going to be my year. Like many I’ve had a lot going on these past few years. This year was going to be different. It was going to be my year. I was going to travel which is something I haven’t been able to do for years. I had dreams of going to Italy, maybe the Amalfi Coast, eating delicious food, drinking wine, wearing dresses covered in lemons. You get the idea.
It isn’t just about holidays. I was hoping to progress in my career. I just keep thinking we are nearly half way through the year and what have I achieved? Being self-employed has been hard. A lot of my work has been massively reduced and I’m barely working at all. In some respects I am lucky because I have qualified for the Self Employed Income Support Scheme. But, because of how it’s calculated my three month grant doesn’t amount to one month’s pay at my current rate. I’ve been looking for extra work but many companies can’t afford to take people on. Each year I try to build on my business and increase my earnings but I feel like this is a huge set back. For other people it will be about having their wedding postponed or their fertility treatment being delayed.
Has 2020 been a waste?
I think it is all too easy to think about all of the things that we have lost or missed out on but instead I’m trying to focus on what I’ve gained.
Because of lockdown I have been able to regularly catch up and check in with people I wouldn’t always speak to every week. Everyone has their own lives and we are all incredibly busy but so much of this situation has taught me to slow down.
It has taught me that I very quickly adapt to new situations. In some respects you could argue that maybe my life before lockdown wasn’t that different to during isolation. I live on my own, work on my own for half the week and don’t see friends every week. However, I have learnt that I truly am happy in my own company. You don’t have to be alone to feel lonely, and I can honestly say that I haven’t felt lonely once since I began isolating at the start of March. That could partly be down to having Missy my cat. If you have animals you will completely understand that while they don’t exactly talk back, they are amazing company.
Writing this post has highlighted how privileged I am. I think with so many truly horrific things happening in the world it makes me feel silly that this is all I have to concern myself with. The worst thing that is happening to me is that I can’t go on holiday and I’m not really earning, but I am safe and well.
We have learnt that it is not enough to not be racist, we must be anti racist. The Black Lives Matter movement has been global. Many people I follow online have shared resources that have been incredibly helpful. I have been spending my time offline educating myself on what this means and how I can use my voice to make a difference.
2020 is the year of change.