On the last day of 2020, we ate take-out deep-dish pizza for dinner picnic-style on the floor of our kitchen and introduced Madalena and Beatrice to their first cups of sparkling apple cider. “You like it, mom? It’s too spicy for you, mom?” Beatrice said as she casually stole my cup once hers ran low. She is my only child who calls me “mom” instead of “mama,” and I swear in this moment I caught a glimpse of her future adult self and I’m still a little bit shook.
We lit sparklers after the sun went down and shouted into the dark sky “HAPPY NEW YEAR!” with so much excitement and conviction, you may have confused our 7pm New Year’s Eve party situation for more of a stroke-of-midnight-affair.
During our last meal of 2020, we discussed together a new family word for the coming year, and settled on Grateful, a suggestion made by all three of our oldest children. The kids practiced making toasts as we solidified the new word, some toasts airing sillier, others surprisingly profound. After all, these kids (and all kids right now) have had quite the year, and I’m not sure we’ve given them enough credit for the impressive ways in which they’ve handled it.
Josh and I started a movie after all the littles were tucked in and dreaming, but I didn’t last long and fell asleep before midnight (and actually just ten minutes into the film…) A few hours later, my body jolted awake at exactly 12:05am as I checked the clock on my nightstand to be sure we’d successfully moved into the new year and officially left the last one. Five minutes into the new year felt big. My head hit the pillow and I said a prayer of gratitude.
And while 2021 showing up doesn’t automatically change our current world or cure the pandemic or solve the struggles, it does prove we all made it through. And that counts for something.
I hold a lot of hope for the coming year. No big resolutions or massive goals set over here, but a prayer of gratitude for the lessons 2020 brought, for the big changes I’m doing my best to lean into and for the renewed sense of priorities the last many months brought my way. Looking forward to carrying a full heart of gratitude into 2021 with clearer intention and stronger commitment to my family, my community, and myself.
I am wishing you a happy and healthy new year! And sending you a whole lotta love….