It's the hope that kills you

Every year I make a wall calendar with pictures of my family from the previous year. I was dreading compiling pictures for this year's calendar. Would I even be able to find 12 good pictures from 2020?

There were a few months of life "before." A Disney World trip to ring in the new year. Finishing my daughters' basketball season. Pictures from Kennedy- the Catholics in the Community project, Fiddlesticks (the winter production), a District Boys Basketball title, Dueling Pianos.

Mid-March. Shutdown. Pictures of baking, playing cards, and building forts. Screenshots of Zoom meetings. Pictures from Kennedy- National Honor Society inauguration, celebrating our student-athletes through signing day, graduation celebrations I poured my heart into.

Slowly, some normalcy crept in. Small outdoor picnics with friends and family. Being at the pool and golfing. Home improvement projects (My husband built a deck and I helped, and that was the hottest week of the summer).

Back to school pictures- masked and unmasked smiles. Fun times like Homecoming and fall sports, and a football season that took us all the way to the end. Projects in Entrepreneurship, WJFK episodes, and Spirit Week costumes.

And the most recent month...for my family, back to staying home. A Christmas tree that went up on Halloween (don't judge me). Baking again. Playing hoops in the backyard instead of the gym. 

As I made it to the end of the photo compilation year with plenty of pictures to choose from, I thought of the phrase, "It's the hope that kills you." It's a popular phrase in England used in "football" (soccer), in which the optimism of your team winning and then not...well, it makes it all the more crushing. (Please someone watch Ted Lasso so we can talk about this)

Is the hope killing me? I thought it was. The hope of real normalcy; it was crushing when I thought of starting this project. I thought I was just going to be sad. Instead, I found myself laughing, thinking of events with fondness, and congratulating myself on getting through some really tough times professionally. No one likes what's happening in the world right now and your reasons can stay your own. I respect however you feel about the reality of our situation. Any which way, it can't be the hope of getting to a normal (that doesn't seem to be moving very quick) that kills us. Instead, as Desmond Tutu is quoted, "Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all of the darkness.”

2020 is almost over. This year wasn't great, but there was good in this year. I am glad my photo memories reminded me of both the light and the darkness. Without the dark, how would the stars shine? 

It's the hope that kills you....if you can't see that there is light despite all of the darkness.


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