A New Year – 2022

It is hard to believe that we are at the end of another year. It doesn’t seem that long ago that we were relieved to see the end of 2020. The Covid-19 pandemic threw the whole world into a spin and we saw things that we could never have predicted: closed borders, local and national lockdowns, social distancing, obsessive hand washing and an uptake in technology like never before. Who could have imagined that we could do so much over Zoom! This time last year we had high hopes that we would be putting Covid behind us.

Instead 2021 has rolled out more of the same. Covid has dragged on and on with new variants, massive national vaccine roll-outs, and political arguments about the best way forward. There was also the ongoing catastrophe in Afghanistan and Australians embarrassment at our federal government’s continued environmental blindness. Thank goodness we had the Paralympics to lift our spirits. All of a sudden though, we are at the end of 2021 and it feels a lot like deja vu. 2022 will be much the same…Covid, Covid and more Covid. Pandemics apparently run a course of between 3-5 years, according to history. Three more years to go?

As Queensland grapples with its first real experience of the pandemic, the rapidly increasing cases put a real dampener on any New Year celebrations. I guess we’ll be just doing more of the same – staying home and staying home and staying home. Until recently, Queensland had been pretty much Covid-free, and while I understand we can’t just live in total quarantine for the next three years, I am not impressed by some Australian states who seem to have just given up and let Covid run free. Living with Covid doesn’t mean we should just throw the vulnerable and the more at risk under the bus. Now it’s just a total disaster. So much for a Happy New Year.

So, do we even bother to make any resolutions? It might seem like a complete waste of time when we don’t know what the year will bring. On the other hand, do we ever know what is around the corner? Sometimes it is better to not know.  Even before Covid, we made resolutions and plans for the new year, only to throw them all out the window when the proverbial shit hit the fan. In those times we would heave a big sigh, shrug our shoulders and say: Such is Life. Is it really any different now?

Making resolutions or goals or even just vague kind of ideas about the future, even if they don’t pan out, can still have value. It can give us a more hopeful frame of mind for the new year. After all, we have already had two years of Covid, how could it get any worse? There are still things we can aim for, like being nice to our families, caring for others in our community, respecting mandates for the sake of others, using our time wisely, and making the most of the technology available to us. We can still give up bad habits, lose some weight, read more books, smile at strangers and so on. Little things still count. Besides, it will give us something else to think about.

I am not usually one for making resolutions but there are some things we hope to keep working on during 2022. They are more a continuation of things rather than startling turn over a new leaf goals.  Over the last couple of months Bec and I have made some lifestyle changes which have been paying off.  Simply cutting out preservatives and additives, avoiding convenience and junk food, and making meals from scratch has made a noticeable difference to Bec’s migraines and we just both generally feel a whole lot better. So there will be a lot more of that.

And then there is just more of the usual things, like reading widely, getting out in the garden, studying hard and continuing to develop a full and meaningful life for Dan. Sometimes it is just the ordinary things we do in our everyday life, the little things, that can make the most difference for us and the people around us.

Will you be making some New Year resolutions or will you just go with the flow?

 Which ever way you fall, I wish you a healthy, peaceful and happy new year.

15 thoughts on “A New Year – 2022

  1. I used to make resolutions but not do much now. One year it was simply to give up tissues and use handkerchiefs. I didn’t fully achieve it but ever since I have certainly reduced my tissue use a lot!

    This year I’d like to keep focusing on things I have doing in recent years like healthy eating, regular yoga.

    And I’d love to read more books – and reduce tide TBR pile. That would be great.

    Still all the best to you Karen. I love hearing from someone living on the Downs!

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    • Thanks for reading. Have you ever been to Toowoomba? One day, when Covid is a memory, I can heartily recommend the Carnival of Flowers held every September. Your focus points for this year sound very much like mine, healthy habits I’ve been trying to cultivate in recent times. Just more of the same rather than anything new. Have a great year with plenty of reading!

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      • I hope so too if you like it! I love large country towns… they are the best. I lived in four places in QLD, then Sydney, but Canberra was MY choice and I love it. However, with both our children now in Melbourne we might end up there in our dotage!

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      • I’ve only ever been to Canberra once, when I was in primary school and my parents decided we needed to know about Parliament House and see all the embassies. I remember the round-abouts most of all. In my family, my parents still live in Adelaide, but the rest of us are spread across three different states, but they always found Adelaide to be fairly central. Until Covid. Border closures have made things quite difficult when you have ageing parents. Hoping for a better year.

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      • Of course you know that Canberra has a carnival of flowers to don’t you? Floriade. Until Covid anyhow. The last two years have been a bit different!

        I feel very sorry for people with aging parents during this time. Both my parents died during the pandemic, but not of COVID. Fortunately they had moved to Canberra in 1997. Mum spent the last month of her life in hospital during the original lockdown, so only I could visit her. But at least I could. The idea of not being able to see her … we’ll I’m grieving enough but if that had happened, I’d be a basket case still I think.

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      • Actually I didn’t know Canberra had a carnival of flowers too – one to put on the bucket list when Covid is just a memory. So sorry to hear of the passing of your parents, but I guess it is all part of the life cycle. It would feel strange though to not have them around anymore. My dad has dementia, which has been particularly challenging. He gets quite fixated on covid, but they are both physically well, which is a relief. But it must so hard for families when the aged-care centres are forced into lock down.

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      • Haha… whenever that is. It’s actually called a Festival but same diff I expect. We’ve had it since 1988 I think, do newer than yours.

        Ageing parents are difficult but I was lucky that mine were all but 91 (Mum) and 100 (Dad) when they died, and both were mentally fine. Mum was a shock but it was fast. One month in hospital and a peaceful death. Dad then moved into Aged Care as he had significant physical care needs, but he too died peacefully. Started going downhill the last two weeks. Took to his bed a few days before he died but was still alert the day he died. Just went in his sleep. In many ways I was very lucky but it’s always hard.

        Dad went into aged care and died between lockdowns. There were some visitor restrictions but none that impinged on him in any serious way, ie I could always visit. I don’t know how he would have coped if I couldn’t have visited.

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  2. Happy New Year to you Karen. We had a pleasant socially distanced celebration, and were blessed to have my sister visit for a week. She just went home today. She has much stress in her life, but we got 2022 off to a good start for her: picnicking and driving to scenic places, walks on the beach and botanical gardens, good eating, stretching exercises, a home spa day, meeting a variety of people who live in our over-55s, stimulating conversations, more eating (hahaha). Lots of laughs and finishing each other’s sentences. I’ll miss her!

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    • We had a lovely Christmas with all of Paul’s family. First time since we’ve been together. His mum has terminal cancer and this was probably going to be her last Christmas. We are all vaccinated so it was fine. We’ve all had to take the Covid restrictions and practices very seriously to protect her. It’s a small price to pay to protect the ones you love. Sounds like your sister enjoyed her time with you. Hope this year is better for her.

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