Tonight, I took our dog out for a late night walk, before our family began the New Year’s Eve festivities – what festivities we could engage in under COVID lockdown, of course. It was cold outside, and completely still, yet it was utterly magical. It was melancholic too, at the same time.
2020 was a horrid year, for so many reasons, I’m sure most of us would agree. Between all of the nightmares surrounding COVID, racial violence and unrest in the United States, the deaths of so many heroes of stage, screen, and music, this year seemed horribly relentless.
As I think back on all that’s gone on, and try to remember what life was like one year ago at the end of 2019, I can’t help but feel like we’re experiencing the loss of a society we once knew – a loss of innocence, in some ways, and I wonder if we can ever get back to the innocence we once held.
As I was walking through the deep snow, I came upon a fallen tree, a lone sentinel in the dark. A witness to the last light of the day. I’m being overly dramatic of course – but then, I’m a writer, so I’m allowed to be! – but it looked to me like a symbol for the loss of our innocence, overlooking the last light of the year.
However, despite all of the sadness and anger around 2020, I couldn’t help but feel mixed emotions. This year was a year of transformation for me, and for my family, in ways that are absolutely positive. As I’ve written in the My Story section of the KayWolfeBooks, my husband and I entered this last year in some trouble. We’d grown apart, to some degree, losing our ability to communicate and losing some of that spark. Call it the stress of being parents, the stress of work (both of us had high-stress careers), and just the general malaise that can take over a couple. Regardless, it was starting to feel like we were living for our child only, rather than for each other. With the strike of COVID, however, and the loss of my job, I was forced into a major rethink and retooling of my life. The need to rediscover purpose (and income) led me to finally embarking on my life-long dream of writing. Through the writing of these stories – stories which began as a way to dream of the excitement and romance that had largely left our lives – I was able to find again that spark. Even better than that, by sharing these stories with my husband, we were able to find that spark between each other again.
With that thought in mind, I now see the image on my walk differently. I see, in the tree, the end of that which was past due for a change, and the light on the horizon the glowing fires from which a better year will follow. The stillness in the air is merely the pause before the rush.
Bring on 2021!
– Love, Kay