Listen, I know it’s a long shot. I understand that when the ball drops on New Year’s Eve and we move into a brand new year, things won’t magically switch to normal. It will be a long road before we can even begin to toss that word around as a description for our lives again. Yet after the last 12 months, let me hold onto this hope.
If I had known that the last time I would see you was in February, I would’ve never left. I would’ve hugged you for 12 hours and frozen time as long as possible. Of course, we didn’t know what would follow. How being able to see each other face-to-face would become a distant memory rather than something to be expected. We didn’t know we’d spend more time on screens out of necessity.
As the year comes to a close, I know it’s taken its toll on so many. I know how important it is to keep your loved ones close, now more than ever. I know that we should never just assume someone will be around when assume they will- we might not get the chances we want to say how much we love them. We have gone through so much, to the point where holding out any kind of hope feels both unrealistic and yet necessary at the same time.
So next year, I hope we can make plans to see each other again. I hope we can safely meet in our living rooms and talk about everything. I hope we can sit in our favorite restaurant and sip on wine we’ve never tried and laugh like we haven’t in ages. I hope when I say “I’ll see you later!” it won’t be an empty phrase, but a full-fledged promise.
I hope that next year, we are more aware of how lucky we are to still remain close, after so much division that ripped the world apart. I hope we don’t take any chances for granted and assume we will always have tomorrow- because we can’t fully know for sure. I hope we are able to see more of our friends and know we can all gather together without putting anyone else at risk- we can just exist together like we once did every week.
I hope that even if things don’t ever return back to how they were before, that we can still create a new type of normal that doesn’t involve only facetime dates and texts trying to squeeze in every detail.
I hope the next year, I get to hug you again.
If I do, I promise I won’t let go.