I changed my mind about a lot of things this year. I’ve known better for a long time, but I did not necessarily do better. This past year saw me continue to wrestle with doing the right thing for my physical, mental, and spiritual well-being. If I apply “As a man thinkers, so he becomes,” then I was clearly a poster child for confu-stration and potential denied. Doing the right thing was not as habitual as I would have liked, but these alternative ways of living and being were much more present in my mind and vision.

I learned that chronic dehydration may have been a major culprit in my health struggles. When fully hydrated, bouts of lightheadedness, dizziness, and brushing against door frames and walls when turning corners is far less likely to occur. While I was able to defeat the infection that greeted me at the start of 2019, I was unaware of the many agents of destruction and dysfunction that were waiting for their turn at bat in 2020.

As I consume more water and soup I feel better. My sense of purpose and hope grow stronger. 2020 presented me with multiple crossroads and intersections, yet I was able to move with purpose and a clearer vision. I’ve embraced creativity as a writer and creative creation as an entrepreneur at the intersection of artistic expression and commerce. It appears true that, “Real G’s move in silence.”

If I had to describe the evolution of my masks over the course of this year, then they would be:

🤔 —> 😦 —> 😢 —> 😑 —> 😄 —> 🤫 —> 😬

This year began with countless questions and possibilities. This year comes to a close with cautious optimism, goals, objective, and next steps. I’m cautious because 45 still has the keys to the castle and his ego has been devastated by his election loss.

It was a tough year, but I got through it. I was nearly shaken loose from the mortal coil a couple of times, but I was blessed by the expert care and kindness of strangers. I’m still in the game, working with the windmills instead of tilting against them.

Money showed up to help me secure life essentials such as shelter, food, love, and belonging.

Words seem insufficient to embody my gratitude for my family, friends, and the many places and people to whom I belong. Just know that my heart is beating with pride and exuding radiance when y’all come to hang out in my mind for a spell.

And, most importantly, I rediscovered freedom lost to me for decades while I sheltered in place.

Nonetheless, a summary rating of 2020 would have to be on a 5-point Shit Scale with 5 turds being the absolute worst. My rating is

💩 💩 💩 💩

Yes, 2020 has been a significantly shitty year, but we cannot wipe it away. There is no mulligan. However, the emergence of imagination that fed hope that inspired change enable me to lower the Shit-O-Meter rating from 5 stars to 4 stars. 2020 was some bullshit, but there was room for more and fouler shit, so I shall err on the side of gratitude. Goodbye, 2020.