For many people around the world, 2020 became a time to re-evaluate, reset, and delve into creative outlets. For others, it was a time to figure out how to survive (in more ways than the obvious). I fell into that latter group for sure. Though I am grateful for the countless ways in which my family and I didn’t struggle last year (we had childcare options; our kids were not yet in real school; we didn’t lose our jobs; we had a home and food to eat), we did face our fair share of challenges. But so did everyone on the planet! Nobody escaped 2020 without facing immense pain and loss. However, it was also a year of change, growth, reform, and reckoning.
We all saw, heard, and experienced so many life-changing and history-making events in 2020. Normally, these are things I would sit down and write about on this blog to share my thoughts and receive feedback from others. The outlet of writing has, since my youth, been a source of comfort and processing. However, I could not have find the energy (physically, mentally, emotionally) last year to channel my musings onto the page. Between having my third baby in March 2020, returning to work in a hospital in the midst of a global pandemic, studying for boards, and getting COVID myself, focusing on getting through the days (and nights!) was all I could accomplish. Things were finally starting to look up this Spring with the declining COVD cases and increasing vaccination rates. Then the end of summer came, and with it, the Delta variant. My healthcare colleagues and I felt utterly dejected and disappointed that we were being forced to re-endure this trauma when it was now preventable.
Needless to say, processing emotions and writing down my feelings dropped off my list of priorities. I still made an effort to focus on self-care and strengthening my mental endurance, largely through audiobooks and podcasts. I am also forever grateful to my OB/Gyn who convinced me to start an anti-depressant at my 6-week postpartum checkup. I am a true believer that there is no shame in asking for and taking help when you need it! I started to slowly focus on prioritizing my physical health as well by eating nutritious foods and exercising. I talked with fellow healthcare workers about our experiences, and many times, we simply understood what the other was going through without the need for words.
All throughout the last year and a half, I have had a desire to get back to writing, not only for myself but to provide a meaningful experience for you, the reader. Of course, it was always easier to flop into bed at the end of a long day after work, after dinner and nighttime routines with the kids, and mindlessly scroll on social media as a way to “unwind.” Procrastination is such an easy way out of doing the things we wish we could do! I kept this bad habit up for quite some time.
Then, I noticed that during all of those self-help podcasts and audiobooks, I would hear reminders to take small steps towards my goals and dreams. I would hear over and over again the importance of limiting social media and instead setting aside a few minutes a day to do something good for my mind and soul. Whether that meant reading a book for 10 minutes before bed or listening to a meditation, I tried harder to make these small changes more often than not. Still, I put off sitting down to intentionally write for so long.
Then, just recently, I had a very surprising and unexpected encounter that drove my motivation to write sky high. I received a bit of positive feedback on my blog from an almost complete stranger, and it was so moving that I questioned why I stopped writing. Because of this person’s thoughtful and structured feedback, I made a conscious decision to get back into blogging, and to be purposeful and consistent with it.
So here we are! I started this blog nine years ago (here is my very first post!) Sometimes I have been very active with writing, and other times I have been very quiet. This post is only my second post this year, but it will be the first of many more to come. My goal is to write two blog posts per week to share with all of you. I am so excited to continue this journey, and I would love for your input and comments along the way!
Here’s to hitting refresh.