I know 2020 was a crazy, hard, sad, disturbing year for so many of us. I look back and see how God carried my family through a lot of things. While others were losing jobs or were struggling financially, we were blessed with promotions and financial gain that we had prayed about but didn’t know when God was going to make those things happen. I started a podcast in 2020 with a new friend. I also started the process to become a certified life coach and I am in the process of opening my own practice. I feel like I am walking into one of the greatest seasons of life and that it will only get better.
But there were also a lot of things that grieved me within the past year. Seeing black men and women be murdered and all of the social injustices really affected me more than I feel like it’s ever have. It’s not that these issues were new but it’s that light was being shed on them in a different way. In some respects, it brought us closer to people and in other ways it created a deeper divide. I can’t explain to you what it feels like to see someone murdered and to hear other’s justify it because of the persons behavior or character. I recall one day being at work and being so deeply grieved that I couldn’t get through one task without sobbing. I would just stop and cry and cry and cry. I told my boss that I wasn’t good and I went home for the remaining part of the day where I laid in bed and cried and slept and then cried some more. Thinking about the people who had lost their lives and thinking about my husband. Praying that he was safe. Being grateful that he drove to work in his uniform in hopes that if something crazy happened they would see he was a U.S. Soldier and show him some grace. He serves our country and I’m worried about him being some how pulled over, attacked, and murdered. Even now typing this the emotions of all that was happening during that time frame are rising up. I know I’ll never forget it and truthfully I don’t want to. I want to be able to share with my kids and I want to believe that one day they will live in a world where it won’t be like this.
And to add on to the year that was 2020 Covid 19–the coronavirus. I never in my life thought that I would be going through a pandemic, worried about the safety of myself and my loved ones and seeing so many people die. So many people losing loved ones and these loved ones being alone on their final days. The devastation this caused! The division it caused with many believing it wasn’t even real. I work in healthcare….it is very real. The amount of stress it caused on each and every person who worked in the healthcare field whether it was office staff, administration, definitely nurses and doctors cannot be put into words. I have had some heavy experiences at work but this was by far one of the heaviest time periods I had ever encountered. Whether people believed it to be true or not, some didn’t think it was as serious as it was being made out to be, none of that matters because there were thousands of people who begged to differ when their loved one passed away and they could’t even say goodbye.
With all that was and with all that happened in 2020 the one thing that I was prompted to do more of was to spread love. I wanted to spread kindness because in many ways these things reminded us that the people that we love, care for and do life with aren’t guaranteed to be with us every day. We are’t promised to be around either. I think these situations also brought out the good in people. It wasn’t all bad. People realized the importance of family and spending time together. We learned to prioritize each other. We learned to be more supportive, to be better listeners, be more empathetic. I learned patience in a whole new way! My oldest daughter was living in Italy with her Dad and stepmom and COVID delayed me seeing her. When I saw her again it had been a year and four months. I cried the whole way home from the airport. But it taught me to appreciate the time that I have with her and my other kids. It reminded me to value the time I have with my husband. We both lead really busy lives and while we aim to make time for each other with date night and family time, I learned that some things could wait.
2020 and all that it encompassed reminded me of one very big thing: Tell someone you love them. Both of my parents passed away many years ago and I wish I would have had the chance to just say “I love you.” But it taught me to say it to the people in my life now. I randomly text the people that mean something to me, that have taught me something, that have brought value to my life, that have been there for me through good times and bad, that have hurt me or let me down, that are related to me or that aren’t related to me…..that I love them. You notice none of those categories describe a set of perfect people. There are no perfect people. There’s just people. People who make mistakes, people who are hurting, people who are confused or frustrated, people who are depressed, people who are lonely, people who have made some poor decisions, people with bad attitudes, people who need Jesus, people who have Jesus and need more of him. Just people. I may not always like them. I may not always agree with them. I may not even talk to them but once every few months or even not at all. None of that matters to me. I just want them to know that they are loved and so I text them and say “Hey! I love you. That’s all.” I honestly feel like I don’t do it enough but when God really nags at me about someone….I’ll text them or send them a card or call them. Remember the phone y’all? And calling people? LOL
So tell someone you love them. Whether you do it every day or not. Tell someone you love them even when you’re mad at them. Tell someone you love them even when you don’t like them or the decision they’ve made. Tell someone you love them when they are well. Tell someone you love them when they are ill. Tell someone you love them when they’ve disappointed you. Just tell them. We do not know what today holds, tomorrow or the next. And if all I’m ever remembered for is always telling people I love them or making them feel loved as often as I can, well, I’m ok with that because I think that’s what God wants us to do anyway.