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Wow, 2020 has been a handful! We had so many wonderful goals for the New Year when the ball dropped at midnight, but plans had to be changed a bit. For the better, sure, and we are stronger for it. We are stronger for the adversities we had to face this year including the pandemic, the presidential election, and so many in between. 

It would have been a handful enough with just the presidential election, but Mother Nature had to throw up a new curveball: a deadly virus. Instead of living in fear, we decided to get back on our feet to learn about this new virus, a cure for the sick, and learn about the preventative measures to not transmit it. Yes, we cannot smile at our neighbors (I am a smiler and hugger so this was especially hard for me), but we have learned about each other through the laughable moments of learning the Zoom world. One of my favorite moments is checking in with my family who I have not seen in a while, especially the elderly who worry me the most. 

The year has certainly zoomed by and we have made it to the end (thank god)! Since we have made it to a place we thought we would have never imagined, I found myself reflecting on the year in how much I have grown. A year ago, we were celebrating the holidays with holiday cheer from loved ones, but there was a mentality in society that if one more person could fit in a room, well "come in then!" Now it's the mentality of "don't stand so close to me and uh, no, I won't join that crowded room, no thank you!" If you told a year ago, "Jess, there will be a pandemic" I would've laughed in disbelief and then probably resorted to thinking you're joking with me. A year later, still in a state of a world pandemic, holidays, though, came early. 

But what is so different about the holidays and Christmas this year?

The holiday season, Christmas, the holidays, whatever you want to call it, makes people more cheerful. My dad has always said that in the holiday season people are more loving towards one another and have a pep in their step. Using this lens I have always noticed that people honk less in cars and say kinder words (in-person, not on social media...well maybe even on social media). 

But, this is every year, right?

Yes, and no. So, yes this attitude tends to happen during the holiday season and the time around New Year's, but we have gone through so much as a world and a country as well with the presidential election (frankly, the whole world has gone through the same one too), that we need a break to decompress and relax. We have had six months of quarantine to do that, but let's relax from quarantine and take time to be grateful for what we really do have (and not what we don't).

I am glad that you are alive. Yes, there were many struggles that people faced including financials/jobs, housing, and family, but I am glad that you are still here to read this article, so thank you. 

Hometown is Leesburg, Virginia Graduation year: 2024 instagram: jessica.kach
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