In just a few days, we’ll be halfway through this monster of a year.

If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that we can keep going. We’re going to see this to the other side.

The second half of a “normal” year brings us things like the First Day of School, Halloween costumes, family gathered ’round the table, pine-scented candles and lights on the trees. (These are a few of my favorite things.)

But this year, all of our favorite things are in question. Will our children return to school at all, or will they meet their teachers through a screen? If they do get to walk the halls, will they be wearing masks with the outfits they laid out carefully the night before? Will they laugh with their friends at lunchtime? Will they run joyfully through the playground … or could an innocent game of tag land them right back at home? 

It’s touch-and-go, with far less touch and not enough “go.”

It feels like a game, this year, but not one we want to play. Too much stopping and starting, waiting and wondering. 

And now we find ourselves at the halfway point. What do we know about that?

“Never do anything halfway,” we learned as children who wanted to give up. 

“Meet me halfway,” we were told at a difficult point in a relationship. 

If you watch a lot of movies, you know that the halfway point is crucial. The happy ending, if it comes at all, is hard won. Hugh Grant’s never gonna get the girl and Moana’s not gonna make it to Te Fiti without a fight.  

So here we are, halfway. There are battles to be fought and mountains to climb and hearts to restore.

We’ve been taking a lot of hikes as a family, with kids who are nine, five and two. At times, we have to carry them on our shoulders. At times, we have to encourage them with our words. One minute they are happily trudging through the mucky mud and the next their tears are part of the puddle.

But we pick ourselves up. We make it to the top, and we take in the view. Maybe we snap some photos and have a snack. Then, we are humbly reminded … we’re only halfway. 

That’s life. This is the year we’ve been handed, and the only thing we can do is keep going. We’re halfway there, livin’ on a prayer, and I know there are better days to come. Prettier views, sunnier skies, and happier times when we won’t have to worry so much about the world our children will grow up in. 

Let yourself be carried when you need it. Lift up the ones who need you, and have a good cry in the mucky mud if that feels right. Then pick yourself up, and carry on.

Your kids need you. The world needs you. The second half is when we pick up the pieces, and start putting things back together.

I’ll see you on the other side. (Even if I’m covered in mud.)

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