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Commentary: Let's make the most of the holiday season

Steve King
Suburbanite correspondent

Merry Christmas!!

To many, the holiday – and the holiday season – are not very merry this year, to say the least, no matter how many exclamation points are affixed to the end of the greeting.

Steve King

Rather, it's been a sad, excruciating and devastating – just to name a few descriptions – 2020 thus far, particularly over the last 9 1/2 months since COVID-19 arrived. And it's not quite over yet. We've still got a week left, so keep your seat belts buckled and continue to hold on tightly.

It's easy for us – in coronavirus years and otherwise – to bemoan what we've lost, and it's easier than ever to do that this year. To be sure, we've lost a lot – people, possibly some family members and friends, unfortunately, along with jobs, careers, businesses, livelihoods, professional and personal, some of our hopes and dreams and, just plain hope.

None of them will be easily replaced, and many not at all. You get only one mom and dad.

It's what everybody is focused on, and that's understandable. That, as mentioned, we humans always seem to dwell so much more on the negatives, serves only to make the situation worse -- much, much worse.

In every dark cloud, though, there is a silver lining, even if, like this year, you have to look really hard for it. It's there, and it's surprisingly amazing and incredible. It's beautiful, really.

The gift that's under all of our trees this year?

The tough, but important and even life-changing lessons we learned.

What this pandemic has done more than anything else – much more than anything else, in fact – is to slow us down. Yes, less is more in this case – less running around frantically, trying to do too much of this, that and other, and attempting to acquire as much wealth and as many material things as possible.

We needed that lesson. Boy, do we ever need that. We were going too fast, and every time you do that, you make mistakes. And we did. We forgot our families and those closest to us. We failed to give them the time and attention they deserve.

The coronavirus has kept us cooped up with one another. Yes, we've gotten on each other's nerves at times but so much more than that is the fact we got a chance to grow closer to those we loved. We remembered why we began loving them in the first place.

It has stroked our hearts and souls in ways we can't describe.

When this is all over – and it will definitely be so at some point – let's make sure that this special gift is not one we place onto a shelf and forget about. It's way too valuable for that.