Ten Things I Am Grateful For In the Bizarre and Horrifying Year of Our Lord 2020
It’s weird. Everything, really. But finding gratitude especially. Given the discomfiting dichotomy of 2020 being the worst shitshow in America in my fifty years on this planet, and yet on a personal level, it having been a pretty good year for me it’s hard. And weird.
Yes, I know this is, in part, my hetero white privilege showing. Not to mention the privilege of my handsome, well-educated, tall white cis husband with the good, stable job that lets us live a very comfortable life in a very nice place.
Still, amidst the pandemic, the BLM protests, the murder Hornets, the devastating wildfires, the rollback of environmental regulations, and the attempts to reimpose abortion restrictions—not to mention the subversion of our democracy and our free press—I think it’s important we each remind ourselves how much we have to be thankful for.
Because we all have something, even if it’s as simple as the sun shining today (Which it’s not. It’s cold and overcast here.).
It might be cliché, and Thanksgiving might’ve been last week, but today I’m filled with anger and frustration over the state of our country and the stupidity of far too many of my fellow Americans. So, I’m letting this time of year be a good reminder to focus on being grateful for what I’ve got.
I’m Finding Gratitude in 2020 for These Ten Things
- It seems like a lifetime (or twelve) ago, but I landed my agent in February of this year. While we haven’t been able to sell my manuscript yet, I’m so thrilled to have Lesley Sabga and The Seymour Agency supporting me and my career.
- My husband and I celebrated our twentieth wedding anniversary this past August. If someone had told twenty-three-year-old me that I would eventually meet and marry my best friend, and we would have a decades-long, healthy and happy relationship, I would’ve laughed them out of the room. Yet here I sit, very happily married to a man who is not perfect, but is perfect for me.
- Two of my novellas won awards towards the end of this year! In Deep took 5th, and Never You took 2nd, in the short erotic category of the OKRWA IDA contest! I’m thrilled an honored.
- Bus camping. Like many people, we camped a lot this summer. And it was glorious. We finished the season with two, incredible, unplugged weeks of road-tripping around Colorado in our 1978 VW bus, mountain biking and paddle boarding, and caught the turning of the aspen trees from start to finish. We’ve had our bus for twenty-two years and have so many memories of traveling all over the country in her. It makes me no end of happy that she’s still rolling.
- Since March, I have been biking, hiking, paddling, and walking a combined distance of around 200 miles a month. I even managed to do more whitewater kayaking than I’ve done in years. Given I’ve had a number of shoulder and wrist injuries, plus a long recovery from foot surgery in recent years, that is pretty damn stellar! It feels so good to be able to walk miles again.
- Our newest rescue pup is a fantastic fit for our family. We adopted Holly at the end of April, and she has proved to be full of joy, super sweet, and a fast learner. Best of all, our older dog adores her. Even though he’s nine, they still rumpus most days at least once, if not twice. It brings me great pleasure to see them both happy.
- I wrote an entire novel this year, and I am rewriting and expanding an old novella. The novel is intended to be book two in the series my agent is working to sell. I wrote the novella four years ago (boy have I become a better writer!) and plan to self-publish it in 2021. Yay!
- My eyes have been opened to how much systemic racism exists in America today. While coming to terms with my own implicit bias hasn’t always been easy, I know I can only be part of the solution if I can understand and admit to the problem.
- Biden and Harris won. Hell yes! It wasn’t with the huge numbers I hoped for and anticipated, and it won’t solve all the issues baked into our systems, but at least I won’t go on Twitter every day wondering what crazy lies or bullying our President is tweeting today.
- It’s almost 2021! While it doesn’t actually change much, it sure feels like it will, so I’m going to celebrate it.
What are you finding gratitude for this year? I’d love to know! Please do share in a comment below.
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