20 lessons that I learned last year.
Not sure what to write for today’s blog post, I recalled that in the early days of Daughters of Sheba Foundation blog, I shared 17 Lessons Learned in 2017.
20 Lessons Or Was It One?
Frankly, it was not immediately clear to me whether there were 20 lessons or just one big one:
Life can and will change in a flash
That must be the underlying lesson – the one that points to the others that were learned this year. This will be a simple list of new things that came on my personal chalkboard for 2020.
The First 10
- Always, always follow your gut. Okay, this is not totally new but it came to me so forcefully during 2020 that it feels like a new lesson.
- Celebrate every birthday you have on Earth. You never know which will be your last, so leave good memories for your family and friends.
- Visit places from your past that hold precious memories. A walk down some memory lane will enrich your current journey.
- Airbnb’s are really nice options for vacationing. Stayed at a couple in Jamaica during January 2020. This was my first time in such properties and the experience was good.
- Always kiss your intimate partner goodbye. You never know which kiss might be the last you ever have with them. Kissed my husband for the last time in his life at the international airport in Kingston, Jamaica late January 2020.
- Getting snail mail from a loved one, family or friend is still a wonderful thing. No matter how often you speak via electronic communication means, having that piece of paper or card from them is invaluable.
- The way a person turns up for your special occasion tells you exactly how they feel about you. Someone turning up to your big moment in their bedroom slippers, for example, is proof positive that they do not respect you.
- People will for sure grab whatever they can from your little much once your eyes are closed. Always heard about this but had to learn this in real-time the day my husband died. So make sure you write and leave a will in a safe place.
- Some police officers are not good public servants. This was my direct experience with the murder of my husband. Would read about ‘bad cops’ all the time but this was the first time that I had to learn this firsthand.
- Grieving is a personally intense process and comes in ebb and flow, go with it. Experienced loss before but not the death of an intimate partner. Have supported clients whose loved ones died but realised that grief is so different for each of us.
Next 9 New Lessons
- You never know when a pandemic will hit. The last one was 100 years ago. Some scientists were warning that another was coming. Very few took them seriously until COVID-19 swept in.
- Social media has awakened the worst in women. Every day, women take to social media to attack each other. Being on lockdown seemed to have released the demons in them.
- Ignorance, racism, hatred is alive and more than well in our world. This should not be a surprise or a new lesson but it is. The level of venom and vitriol that I saw in our world, largely because of one individual and COVID-19 requirements, was astounding.
- A job will ghost you. It is one thing to resign and another to be fired. However, so many have been ghosted by employers during this pandemic. It is confirmation never to put too much store on the idea that you are irreplaceable or invaluable to any employer.
- Reconciliation is something that not everyone will embrace happening for you. Until this year, it was my belief that friends would support you reconciling with someone who you thought did you wrong in the past. I learned that that is not true.
- Grocery shopping online and delivery is a wonderful thing. Into about the third month of COVID-19, I started doing my grocery shopping this way. It has been a blessing.
- The cancel culture, if you pay attention to it, will crucify you. Always knew that not everything is for everyone. However, the rise of the so-called cancel culture is destroying talented and educated people who have much to offer.
- You are 55-years-old only once. Spent this anniversary without any fanfare. Not one for regrets but seeing how the year progressed, maybe I should have done more.
- Buy your eldest grandchild, at least, a cell phone. My six-year-old granddaughter has had devices since she was eight-months-old. However, getting her a cell phone for Christmas 2019 was one of the best gifts as since we are social distancing, that’s our primary means of contact.
And The Final Lesson
As it is every year, the final lesson is the old one.
There will always be more lessons.
We all have pinned a lot of hopes on this new year. How it will turn or, evolve, no one knows. Many will not see the year to the end, that is just reality, and I might be one of them. So, what to do? Try to embrace the 20 lessons that I have shared and learn some new ones for as long as you have.
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Continue to have a great day.