Can I be honest here and maybe say what a lot of us are feeling, or have felt at least once over the last months? Here it is: I’m disappointed with 2020.
I realized this a few days ago. And right now, it feels a lot like this:
2020 – the year of ‘perfect vision’ right? Putting the rocky 2019 behind us all and ‘WOOHOO’ everyone was on some sort of 2020 high. But it sure doesn’t seem so perfect so far.
The start of 2020 felt so strong, exciting, promising, and just fresh. I turned 30 two days before the start of a new decade and was walking into the new year with so much hope and excitement for all that was ahead. The world walked into a new decade, but so did I – one that I knew would be huge and life defining in a lot of ways.
And I pictured it more like this:
I was looking forward to lots of travel in 2020, meeting new people, expanding some areas of my life, and continuing to settle into my home and truly making it a home. I was looking forward to potentially meeting my ‘forever’ person and beginning a life together. Leaving much of the past behind – the memory, some people, personal hardship and struggle of the last decade.. and walking forward with such a fresh heart, perspective, healed soul, and more.
It started so high – I could just FEEL it. That it was going to be good. And then a short two months into the year, and we were hit with this life halting situation that has dramatically changed, shifted, and seemingly pretty much stopped everything in it’s tracks.
I have to be honest and say: it just plain stinks. We’re about halfway through the year, and I said to my sister the other day – ‘so much for a great 2020. It feels like a repeat of 2019’, just in a different way.
A side personal note here: I’m learning and growing in a lot of ways in my life right now, and one of those ways is allowing myself to be with, sit in, and really identify my own feelings – rather than push them aside. This is hard for me, since I grew up in an environment that didn’t validate the feelings I had, so I’ve, to put it plainly, learned to not know my own feelings and rush to tend to other, abandoning myself in the process. The damage this has done for the relationship with myself is deep, but I am working hard to reverse that and unlearn those patterns. In this whole process, I’ve learned that it’s okay to have feelings – it’s actually quite normal (ha) and we NEED them. Feelings are identifiers for us, and to experience a feeling is not bad! It’s also not my job to tend to others feelings, I have to tend to my own first before I can do so adequately for others.
Soo that being said, rather than push away the disappointment and let down of the expectation I had for this year being somewhat smashed (so far), I let myself just ‘sit’ in that for a bit. And be disappointed and a little mad at how things have turned out. On top of that, dealing with my back going out the last few weeks, I’ve felt even more restricted/discouraged as it is. Once I did this, I was able to work through that disappointment.. and just validate myself for it – “yep, Maris.. this does stink. It does stink to have plans and dreams put on hold, canceled, or feel crushed. You absolutely can feel disappointed about that. It’s normal!” It feels pretty good to just let yourself feel that way for a bit – and not go ‘outside’ of your own feelings, discredit them, and say well it stinks for me, “but it would be worse if……. *fill in the blank*”.
We can validate our own feelings and position without demeaning value to someone else’s feelings or position.
Did you catch that? Read it again: We can validate our own feelings and position without demeaning value to someone else’s feelings or position.
You are allowed to have feelings and be disappointed, regardless of whether or not your life is the worst, best, mediocre, affected drastically, affected differently… you get what I’m saying. (I hope.)
Another honesty moment here: I feel like there’s so much judgment right now – people are quick to judge or respond and harshly invalidate another human. Can we stop this? We are all working through and dealing with so much more than meets the eye – I can say this for one, as an influencer, who appears to show the pretty moments of my life and not always the not so pretty ones.. that I have worked through and walked through some not so pleasant things over the last 8 weeks that no one on the outside would see or know. It’s easy to say oh, she doesn’t have it that bad.. But FRIENDS, you have no idea what’s on the other side. The unseen struggle that others go through. The deep wounds that others are healing from. The emotional turmoil that others are experiencing.
More than ever, we need to give one another compassion, grace, love, and the space to grow.
Which brings me to my next ‘realization’ in this process. After I sort of sat in my disappointment for a bit and reflected on what I thought this year would be (and has not been), I realized that there’s still something here. There’s still something for 2020 to be and hold. A purpose, that may not be something we all know or see for a long time.
What’s the growth here?
What’s the personal discovery here?
What’s the realization or awakening to more and deeper things?
In a time when all of our surface level things and busy schedules are removed, when we’re stripped down to the basics and forced to face things we may not normally face… what are we learning?
When I asked myself those questions, I realized there was a lot, and that I also needed to give myself credit and validate those things as well.. I’ve worked through some difficult things, and still am. Dug deep into emotional wounds that are not pretty to face. Had some hard but truthful conversations with people close to me. Accepted some realities that I was not wanting to be true. Exercised boundaries over my emotional and mental health in a new way. Realized that I should let go of some things. Those are BIG things. They’re transformational and life changing things. And have impact far outside of just a day or week.
See – this may feel like an absolute tornado of a storm, but there is still beauty to be found here. There’s still growth to be had, and lessons to grasp. The perfect idea of 2020 that I had may not be shaping up to be exactly that, but it is proving to be huge.. just in a different way. This isn’t a wasteful time. Or a ‘wash’ of a few months.. at least, not for me. In fact, I think/hope that we will all look back on this time and realize there was more to it than we even realize now.
I’ll still get to travel, settle into my home (and have!), meet new people, explore new places, and meet the love of my life. But not having any of that right now does not mean that 2020 isn’t still good.
So what are you struggling with through all of this? Canceled plans, crushed dreams, downed expectations? Of course. Girl, I know. I wish I could hop through this screen and hug you right now. Give yourself time to work through that disappointment and sadness.
And then, when you’re ready, look for the silver lining in the craziness. The growth you’ve had, lesson you’ve learned, luxury you’ve appreciated.. whatever it is. It doesn’t have to be some huge thing, but I’m sure there’s one thing, small as it may be. It’ll be your ‘2020 thing’. And it can feel like this:
I’m a huge journaler, always have been. I used to love writing in my diary when I was little (gosh I need to find that!!) It’s therapeutic, but also so amazing to go back on times in my life when it felt like the/my world was ending, changing, uncertain… I usually go back and read them, and see that there was SO much growth, realization, beauty, and purpose.
I know 2020 will be the same.