At the end of any year, do you reflect on the past months before making resolutions or plans for the New Year? With that being said- do we even want to reflect on the year 2020?! We started this year with all of our usual hopes and dreams. And then February and March came along and most of the world was turned upside down. We couldn’t have imagined what this year would bring.
As an Early Learning Centre, we closed our doors to all but the children of essential workers in mid- March. Only a few of our staff stayed on, while the rest stayed home and waited for our provincial government to make changes to allow us to reopen. We kept in touch, but it wasn’t ‘normal’. Our only contact with ‘our’ children and their families was through Zoom, or a few text messages. We did a few videos on You Tube for our families, which they appreciated. And we waited. And waited. For the world to get back to life as usual. We reopened in June- to a new normal. Temperature checks, screening, group bubbles that we couldn’t cross- so while we were back together- we weren’t really. And here we are at the end of December- still dealing with it.
So when we reflect on 2020? Let’s really think about it. What happened this year?
We slowed down. We spent more time with our immediate families. We stopped our over scheduled lives and spent more time at home. We took less trips to the store, so we spent more time baking. We started to think more about what we really need, as opposed to what we ‘want’. We began to realize that the things that were ‘essential’ were not what we may have previously thought. We moved forward without sporting events, movie theatres, restaurant outings and trips to the mall. We began to look at grocery store/retail workers, truck drivers, nurses, doctors and yes- educators and childcare workers as essential. In a year when we have been forced to be apart- we have been brought closer in spirit. Most of all, we realized that the most important things in life – are not ‘things’.
‘I am beginning to learn that it is the sweet simple things of life
which are the real ones after all’
Laura Ingalls Wilder
We have been very fortunate in our area. The pandemic has not hit us as hard in our small province as it has in many other parts of Canada and the world. We can only hope that now that vaccines are becoming available, that life will somewhat revert back to ‘normal’ in the coming year.
But hopefully we will have a ‘new normal’. One where we appreciate our families and friends more. Where we slow down and ‘smell the roses’. Where we remember to show our appreciation more for people who often go unnoticed.
In 2021, let’s try to look at the bright side of things. Let’s be kinder to others. Let’s be conscious of the choices we make, for our health, our families, our friends and the earth. Let’s try to live simply, be less wasteful and spend more time in nature. Let’s try to count our blessings instead of faults- our own and others. Remember that children learn by watching us. Be an example- a good one.
Love one another and look for the good in everyone.
And enjoy the little things.
All the best to all of you in 2021.