Ending 2020 with Gratitude

by Donna McBride, Pinal County Juvenile Court Program Administrator II

2020 is a year that will go down in history. Most of us are ready to bid it farewell without a second glance. There’s no doubt this has been a year of struggle, heartache and tragedy due to COVID-19.

It has affected every single one of us in some way. Some caught the virus and recovered. Others watched loved ones pass away. People lost their jobs. Students lost out on educational opportunities. Businesses closed their doors. The list goes on and on. And, it’s not over yet.

But for those who know me, I always look at life with the “glass is half full” attitude. In the midst of tragedy, communities met the challenge. People stepped up to help their neighbors. First responders and health care workers crossed the lines to keep us safe and care for those who could not care for themselves. Schools creatively found ways to engage with students. Business owners did their best to provide essential services. Parents became home-school teachers. Strangers collected food, students put together care packages for the homeless and thousands of masks were handmade for those who needed them. Families spent valuable time together.

As the holidays make their way into our homes, let’s end this year with visions of what was good and what was right in this world. Let us be thankful for those things we often take for granted. Make your list of what you are grateful for. Share it with those you care about. Own it. Believe it. You deserve it.

My 2020 Gratitude List may be different from yours and that’s OK. Just remember to keep your glass half full and bring in this next year with positive thoughts, gratitude and kindness to others.

Happy holidays!

Donna’s top 10 gratitude list:
1. Arizona sunsets. Their beauty reminds me that I made it another day.

2. Freedom. I live in the best country in the world and will never take my rights for granted.

3. Afternoon naps. Curling up on the couch on a Sunday afternoon refreshes my soul.

4. Conversations with my sons. Our thought-provoking talks make me proud of who they are.

5. Reading. Nothing feels better than to hold a book in my hand and escape.

6. Thunderstorms. Rumbling sounds from the skies remind me there is something bigger than myself.

7. Technology. Contact with family and friends across the miles is essential to my happiness.

8. Mistakes. I make them. I own them. More importantly, they teach me valuable lessons.

9. Child laughter. Nothing quite makes the soul happier than the sounds of a child’s innocent laugh.

10. Marriage. After 40 years together, Mike and I must be doing something right!