Listen, 2021… We Need to Talk


I hate it when relationships get to this point. 

It’s bad, y’all. I feel like it’s ending. I’m having some doubts about our future. We’re in a weird place. Can we maybe just sit and talk a while about where we want this to go? Do you see this being successful? I’d like to set some goals for us. Maybe we should talk. Yes, I think we need to talk. I feel like you don’t care about my feelings, 2020.

I’m not getting enough time with the people I love. I’m doing everything and getting nothing done all at the same time. I need a break. I need a vacation. I need to see my therapist. I’m not happy with our current situation.

See, 2020, you’re just not good for me. I think we should break it off.

Gals, if 2020 gave us anything, it’s the unimaginable proof that it can always get worse. Good Lord, this year has been one thing after another. Remember when we all stared at the pictures and videos of the Australian wildfires and thought, “Man, I can’t believe 2020 is starting off with such awful news!” Little did we know, right?

There is some solace to be found in this breakup, though. I always tell people that there’s a lesson in everything, and man, this year has been full of lessons. What have we learned? We’ve learned that a majority of those meetings could be emails, after all. We’ve learned that a lot of employees can work from home successfully when given the opportunity to try. We’ve learned that both kids and adults thrive on social interaction, and need extra support when they don’t get it. We’ve learned that kindness and empathy can help a lot more than we ever thought.

Through the timely accessibility of trash television, we’ve learned that tigers and sequins and drugs can definitely go together and that some of what you lack in talent can be made up for with an overabundance of confidence. (Thank you, Joe Exotic!) We got more time with our kids, our partners, and ourselves. We learned to make sourdough bread – well, maybe you did. We road tripped. We camped. We rode bikes. We went outside. We zoomed with no pants and with wine in our coffee mugs (just kidding, Big Brother, we certainly did NOT do that EVER). We learned. Those are the lessons. I’m ready for a fresh start, and I hope you are, too, mamas. Because that new relationship is right around the corner.

So, 2021, let’s talk. I want all of these lessons to push us to a good place. I want us to be successful. I want to be fulfilled and I want to see you in all your (hopefully good) glory! I want to give you what I have to give and to receive what you have for me in return. I want the people I love to be healthy and safe. I want people to love each other again and not walk around on pins and needles, afraid of real human interaction. I want to turn on the news and not watch with one eye squeezed shut and my finger on the “off” button.

Please tell me you’ll be better to us than the last one was, because, truth be told, we may be recovering from that relationship for a while. Be gentle with us – we may be apprehensive to receive all of the good stuff you may have to offer. We may even attempt to sabotage it out of fear. But please stick with us, because we crave good news, for the love of God.

And if 2021 can prove anything to those of us who just need one tiny flicker of light at the end of this impossibly long tunnel, it’s that there are now infinitely more stairs above us than below us. In this unique instance, hindsight is literally 2020, and I couldn’t be happier for all of us to move forward toward a better relationship with 2021. Out with the old, as they say. Whoever “they” are.

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Kelli is a native Okie with a larger-than-life personality and an unhealthy dose of sarcasm. She married Bobby in 2011, and they welcomed daughter, Maevyn, in 2013. Maevyn is autistic, and every day is a new adventure in discovering how her unique mind works. Life on their NE Oklahoma City acreage is never dull, and they enjoy RV camping and Sooner football. Kelli is a former law enforcement officer who now works full-time at the Oklahoma Highway Safety Office facilitating programs that keep people safe on our roadways. She also enjoys consulting for Beautycounter, advocating for tougher legislation in the US beauty industry, stifling inappropriate profanity, managing her RBF, looking for the nearest restroom, and trying not to sing Disney songs out loud in public.


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