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A coworker shared an article from 2018 this week on why 536 AD was “the worst year to be alive.” The thought of cold, famine, death and darkness for a year in what was already considered “the dark ages” (modern scholars avoid the term) definitely doesn’t sound pleasant. Folks from that age would be rightfully concerned that the apocalypse was near.

In comparison, 2020 might give it a run for its money. Nearly two million people are dead from a global pandemic, taking the year out of the running for best ever by a wide margin. Here in Nashville, we endured the economic fallout of that – bookended by tornadoes, a derecho and a terrorist attack on Second Avenue.

But there’s reason to hope. The country chose a different direction in November and I have more confidence in the incoming team’s ability to get the pandemic under control. The city will pick up the pieces again, just like it did after the 1998 tornadoes and 2010 floods. Samantha and I will get better at the whole being-a-parent thing (While still maintaining a career). Someday, we’ll see our friends again on something other than a computer screen.

This is the year that was:

  • Marked three years with VUMC in January.
  • Traveled to Atlanta for a Carlson Leadership Academy for SigEp.
  • Completed Young Leaders Council as part of the Nashville 74 class.
  • Began a year-long YLC Board Internship with Transit Now Nashville.
  • Went to very few Nashville Predators home games, but the last one was a win.
  • Rode the bus for my daily commute until everything shut down.
  • Left my work office one afternoon in March and still haven’t returned.
  • Much fewer trips to the dog park, which has our dog persistently depressed.
  • No concerts or weddings this year.
  • Worked with my college fraternity for another term as the alumni association president.
  • Avoided any major expense on the house this year, which was a nice change of pace.
  • Became a parent and got a lot less sleep.
  • Walked around the neighborhood nearly every afternoon if the weather cooperated.
  • Played a lot of “Among Us” and Mario Kart Tour.
  • Lost count of the number of bottles I’ve made / washed or the diapers I’ve changed after doing zero of those things prior to this year.
  • Replaced my personal laptop with a Mac mini (on account of not needing to travel).
  • Voted in my fifth presidential election (3-2 record).
  • Did most of my post-March socializing via Zoom.
  • Spent too much time looking at Twitter.
  • Received the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine, for which I am incredibly grateful.
  • Rang in the new year from our home in East Nashville with the baby already in bed and dog laying at our feet.