I Made 2020 My Year, and You Should Too

Strawberry Lake, Kalispell, Montana

Complaining about 2020 is easy. There is a lot to feel down about. All the lost lives and suffering. Unemployment and the plummeting economy. Racial injustice. The divisive election. The list goes on.

Being grateful for 2020 is not as easy.

I had a lot of to-dos for this year that did not come to fruition. I wanted to go on an African safari; instead, I haven’t flown since February. I wanted to hike Havasupai Falls in the Grand Canyon; since March, travel permits there have been suspended, indefinitely. I wanted to challenge and stretch myself musically this year (I’m a vocalist); instead, karaoke is nearly impossible with a mask (if it’s even open!). 

Despite my failed plans, I accomplished a lot this year. 2020 has been a blessing.

I went under the laser and had eye surgery, giving me 20-20 vision for the first time in my life. This is an incredible freedom, as I struggled with debilitating poor vision that limited my participation in many activities.

View this post on Instagram

Ignore the goofy getup, the drugged smile and double chin… this post is about ⚡️FREEDOM⚡️. And it’s in the palm of my hand (or more aptly, the center of my face)! For a few years, I had been chewing on the idea of #ICL — implantable #contactlenses — my vision SO horrible I was ineligible for #lasik — and what held me back was the incredible price tag ($7K for both eyes) and the scariness of going under the knife especially for someone with an #eyephobia… But FREEDOM kept calling. With all my #traveling and #adventure, I felt like I was more limited without the surgery. Surfing off the coast of Hawaii? If I lost a contact, I would be SOL. I wouldn’t know which way was up. Headline reads: lost at sea. Glacier hiking, desert dune-buggying, underwater cave exploration? Lost a contact = consider me a missing persons. But far more regular was for me to wake up in a foreign place and be completely ignorant to anything going on in front of me until I could scrabble for my glasses. (I couldn’t identify a single soul in a lineup.) MUCH LESS having to bring along weeks and months worth of daily disposable contacts that, for a #backpacker, takes up coveted packing space. So I did it. I did the consult. I put the max into an HSA. I made the appointments, I beat my phobia and I got it done. And already I’m so pleased with the results. 20/20 in 2020 is not a bad way to be. Shoutout to Dr. Duncan and his team at @horizonlaservision2020 for taking great care of me! And anyone out there with poor eyesight, who’s on the fence but wants freedom and #2020vision like ME 💗 it’s so worth it 💫

A post shared by Julie Rose / juliedevivre.com (@juliebrose) on

I bought an SUV, took up car camping, and visited five national parks (this year so far) — Badlands, Zion, Glacier, Yellowstone, and Grand Tetons — and more to come.

I sold my 1,600-square-foot house and downsized into my SUV, purged 98% of my earthly belongings, and embraced a minimalist, nomadic lifestyle. By the end of 2020, I will have visited (or temporarily-lived in) seven new states this year: New Mexico, South Dakota, Wyoming, Idaho, Montana, Arkansas, and Oklahoma, meeting incredible people and seeing beautiful things.

I turned 35, and while I had a few more disappointing false starts in the relationship arena, I have a sunny outlook that the man who’s right for me is out there, and I’ll find him when the timing is right for us both. 

Sure, 2020 is not what I expected or planned for, and it’s been uncomfortable and demoralizing in a lot of ways, but I take this approach: I take stock of all my blessings. I have what I need to live (which isn’t a lot, as I’ve discovered), I have my health, and I have independence and the right to think and act for myself.

We’ve got two months left. Are you making the most of it and appreciating all the good things you have?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s