From 2020 to 2021: Reaching in gratitude past the pandemic
What a year this has been. Terrible in many ways, and dynamic in others. A year full of opposites: losses, gains, and compromises. A time of creativity, new ideas, and community. Although we missed so much by not being able to physically gather together, we also found ways to connect in a different context. Plans that were usually made around where to meet for dinner or who's going to make the salad at our pot luck, became second to enjoying one another's company on a zoom screen, a (masked) walk, or a wave from across the street. Priorities had to be changed. How important was it to pick up that item today? Could it wait until I made that next run to the grocery store where I only risked exposure once?
Yesterday, I attended a weekly zoom meeting with a wonderful group of employee assistance providers (EAP). We talked about the many things we can still be grateful for during this holiday season. So much is different, and yet so much is still the same. We have our families and loved ones to appreciate and love. Certainly a "virtual hug" is nothing like the real thing, and yet the feeling behind that is as it's always been. We still need to clean dishes and do laundry, and although they have never been my favorite activities, it means we have food and clothing.
That's not to say that we should be ignoring the pain and suffering that so many of us have endured this year, including illness, loss of loved ones, jobs, homes, and blatant inequities. We still need to grieve, cry, or even shout at times. Yet, we have faith that 2021 will bring about fundamental changes, fueled by the power of community, attention to social justice, and reaching out to claim and share what we believe in.
We, at Compris, are working hard to that end, to also bring about social change and advancement in the addiction field, first by de-stigmatizing this illness, once and for all, not just with our language or attitudes, but by how fully and comparably we assess and support whoever comes in the door.
Wishing you safe, healthy and wonderful holidays, full of community and love.
Joyce and Calvin