Editor’s Column: Good Riddance, 2020

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When the pandemic kicked off last spring I said I thought this event was going to leave a mark. Little did I know at that point how deep that mark would go. I’m chalking 2020 up as the second worst year of my life (second only because no one in our family has physically died). There have been other losses, other griefs, other traumas to unpack and process, but we’re still upright and breathing. For so many others, including many in our communities who may or may not share their grief publicly, this year has been a personal horror story.

There is no magic in turning the page on the calendar, unfortunately. When we click over into 2021 tonight at midnight, the only thing that we have the power to change is our attitude.

In the last year we’ve witnessed amazing acts of kindness and generosity. And we’ve been baffled by folks who’ve tried to deny reality.

2020 exposed schisms and flaws in many areas of life that we’ve been ignoring, avoiding or denying for years. Pressure exposes fractures, but it also (eventually) creates diamonds.

The good news is 2021 gives us an opportunity to own up to those newly exposed weaknesses and make positive changes for good — personally, relationally, and socially. Things are not necessarily going to get a lot easier in a hurry, but we can certainly get stronger.

Thank you to all of you who have stuck with us for another year. We appreciate you all.

Speaking of 2020 stress levels, mine are showing. Last week I said the conjunction of Mars and Jupiter would create the “Christmas Star” effect not seen since 1226 AD. In actuality, it was Jupiter and Saturn, not Mars. Three rounds of proofing, several rewrites, and a discussion in the office about the astronomical phenomenon failed to catch my planetary blunder. Thanks, Elaine Jordan, for setting our orbit straight.

Niki Turner

By NIKI TURNER | niki@ht1885.com