Lost in wall-to-wall negativity about a year that, frankly many would rather forget, stories of life-affirming good news about 2020 have been hard to come by. But if you look closely, you’ll find …
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Lost in wall-to-wall negativity about a year that, frankly many would rather forget, stories of life-affirming good news about 2020 have been hard to come by. But if you look closely, you’ll find them.
Two COVID-19 vaccinations were rolled-out in December, 10 months after the search for one began. We saw the largest voter turnout for a U.S. presidential election in 120 years. Across Jefferson County, volunteers gathered, donated and worked to feed families in need. Coloradans pitched in to help victims of destructive wildfires and marched to bring attention to age-old issues around race and inequity.
But did 2020 bring everyday Coloradans anything they’ll want to embrace in coming years?
Heather Davis is a mother to a young daughter, a student and fledgeling journalist. She said the year that’s just passed has been a challenge, but good things have come her way in the form of a new freelance position and an internship. She’s in the top of her class at Metropolitan State University and says overall, 2020 gave her a lot to be thankful for. But digging a bit deeper, she says the truly good things 2020 gave her are more important than jobs or grades.
Davis said her relationship with her daughter has improved because of the additional time they’ve spent together and the challenges they’ve overcome.
“Even though working from home is hard most of the time, I feel like it gives me the ability to be here and know what my daughter needs when she needs it, as opposed to finding out only when calls come in from the teachers,” Davis said. “But I think it’s brought us closer too. We are there to actually see what each other deals with and it gives both of us the unique understanding of what the other is going through. That is something I will take with me.”
Colton McKenna of South Jeffco said it was the year he was able to start a small business doing something he loves.
“A lesson I learned in 2020 is that no matter the circumstances, life is way too short to wake up every day being unhappy,” he said. “I realized how important is to make changes and decisions that better myself.”
Therese Rednor from Lakewood said in 2020, it was the simple things like spending time with her son at a secluded Minnesota lake over the summer, that she’ll hold on to.
“It was there that I allowed myself time to slow down, and delighted in the many games of corn hole that were played, conversations that were had and laughs that were shared,” she said.
“Each day I try to say one thank you — even if it’s just for a beautiful day outside, and learning to take deep breaths, not feeling like I have to rush to get something done.”
Now that 2021 is underway, the reality is, not much has changed. Jeffco remains at Level Red on the COVID-19 Status Dial, and in the near-term, at least, the future of our schools, businesses and daily activities getting back to the way they were in the pre-pandemic era is far from certain. But Davis has some thoughts about this as well.
“When we finally are able to get back to normal, I know this is a year we will never forget and never take our relationships for granted anymore,” she said. “We definitely appreciate each other more. Hopefully everyone will hold on to that too.”
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