As we move into the new year, the high hopes the new year usually brings, have left us waiting. We are waiting for the cheer and excitement that the turn of the calendar usually brings. We are waiting for hope to make its presence felt.
Wait we do. Wait we have. And wait we feel we can’t no more.
2020 has been a heck of a year. And whilst 2021 is looking more promising, the endurance the previous year demanded of us is depleting our last reserves.
We are scrambling for energy, sources of joy and for those inhabitants of Berlin, we are searching for the sun. A persistent blanket of grey has covered our skies and our minds with it.
The usual new year expectations not being met, have people worried. Where is the feeling of joy that we have not felt intensely in what seems like an eternity?
Where are the shimmers of hope that vacation planning at the beginning of the new year usually would bring? No vacations to plan. No escapes from our daily lives in sight.
We are waiting for things to change, above all for things that changed to change back to being the same. Sameness is comfort. Sameness is safe.
Most things have not been the same for a while now, even too long of a time, many people would say.
Yet, sameness might be lying just under the surface. The surfaces of ourselves.
The sameness of how people are feeling. A thing that is not so often shared or discussed. A thing we keep to ourselves in the hope of it passing without leaving too many scars on our seemingly fragile souls.
The sameness might not lie in shared experiences of joy these days. Yet sameness can be found in feelings of shared boredom and fear. A worrisome combination, pulling on people’s hearts.
The fear stems from feelings creeping up that many people might not have felt before. And those who have, might for once, be at an advantage.
Feelings of depression and anxiety are on the rise all over. Usage of employee support programs seems at an all-time high. Which is good news, in a way. It means people are making use of the support some of their companies provide.
Pretty much no one started 2021 energized and excited or refreshed. Whilst the Xmas break was supposed to bring us peace and the opportunity to recharge, it left us feeling worried why exactly that did not take place as the first day of work in the new year peeked its head around the corner.
With the mental pressures of Corona having been, Corona still being, and other world news not exactly highlighting the beacons of humanity that we could all need so dearly right now, we are left with a winter that, especially in Berlin, has always been defined by major tones of grey. You do not see the sun and wonder if it exists at all. Has it been a myth told in tales of innocent glory? A hope we do not dare engage with, in fear of it never having been true.
And yet, whilst the world seems like an uninviting, inhospitable world these days with no place for joy, newness or sharing, we have each other. And this might be the time to leverage this resource which we might have forgotten is the most potent of all: each other.
Giving each other a peek under our surfaces, that we are all so diligently trying to uphold as an image of strength, resilience, and perfection, might just be the cure. Not for Corona, for sure, but for the collateral damage it has brought most of us.