Goodbye 2020

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Madison Gonzales

Canton highlights the lessons to be learnt from the year 2020.

McKenzie Canton, Feature Editor

We survived one of the most mentally straining years in history. 2020 became a domino effect for disaster with wildfires covering the earth, the fright of a possible World War lll, COVID-19 and quarantine, influencer deaths, a chaotic presidential election, riots and movements. All of them took place in one year as if it tried to prove something to us, like a test of the human race. But even with the setbacks, 2020 brought I also learned a lesson.

I had a lot of time to reflect this year because of the long-winded quarantine everyone separated into. I contemplated the 12 months we lived through and it became glaringly obvious we live once. 

Don’t get me wrong, COVID is real and contagious, however, I also believe there has to be a limit to how much we do not live. We spent a scary amount of time confined to walls before we connected with people again. Three months without human interaction is a long time. We need relationships that keep us accountable and relieve us of the stress in life. CMHA scientists prove that connections with other people actually help more than we know. We build better immune systems, mentally we feel healthier, we understand how to regulate our emotions and we can even express higher self-esteem and empathy. We need all of these attributes to consistently retain and exercise for the happy lifestyle we all want. 

Looking back at 2020, I saw the unhappiness in our society and understood the possibility that quarantine caused it. We can exist and stay safe at the same time, but in 2020 we seemed to battle between choosing one or the other. We can do both and stay happy as long as we follow the rules. 

In 2020, we wasted too much time on zoom calls. I want us to go back to restaurants, see family we love, and hang out with friends. I want our society to live life again. We spent 2020 living in fear when we should take advantage of what we have. We have a beautiful world, one made for us to appreciate, but the past year stole that from us. We must attempt to live a joyful life by following regulations with a cautious mind but soak in pure pleasure with a softened heart. 

I understand that everyone’s situation differs, not everyone can risk going out in the world. But there can be some gambling to live, we can all manage our risk-taking at different levels. Not everyone’s story will look the same, but that’s the beauty of it. We can all achieve this by turning from isolation and obtaining control of spirited living again in various ways.

For 12 months, I watched everyone grow tired and lonely because we were never created for separation. We were made to live with one another. I pray 2021 can light a path to figuring out what works best for everyone. I am ready to say goodbye to 2020 and start reconnecting and living a life worth proclaiming one day.