Column: Fortitude for the season

Photo by Gabby Orcutt

By Kevin Hartung

Seems like there is extraordinarily little to be thankful for this year.

COVID is still with us. The election has sparked more contentious actions. Unemployment has left families with few resources to sweeten the Christmas season. Businesses are attempting to recoup losses after a devastating lockdown and a population left in short supply of expendable capital. Even Hollywood is generating entertainment in a restrictive environment despite theater chains closing their doors. One might claim that there is little rationale for celebration.

Yet, the holiday season is just around the corner, and Americans are not defined by their politics. We are not shaped by our sufferings. We find the reserves to survive and to commemorate the season. As always when families gather and enjoy their traditions. it invokes a kindred spirit. As people pass along season’s greetings, we hear the hope resonating in their voices.

This is as it should be. Together we endured a malevolent year, and we are right to expect a restorative year ahead. There is always promise and possibilities in a new beginning and a new year.

To the naysayers, we say there is every reason for holiday observances if we trust that in each of us lies a compassionate nature. We can forgive, forget, and move on with our lives. Try as they might, dissenters can never divide loving families along political lines.

After all, how much changes in our individual lives because of political outcomes? We have our families and our resolve to endure the gravest situations. The prospect of regaining our livelihoods persists and our resilience is inescapable. Look around, Americans maintain an ability to recover from devastations and not surrender in the face of misfortune. Our gift is determination.

Politics be damned. Forward and persevere are the battle cries for the year ahead. We are survivalists, both ourselves and our nation. We have been tested. We were lacking at times, but we endured and maintained the momentum. We will not be crushed by adversity.

We have always been able to put our best selves into the holidays. We understand that we get out of the season as much as we willing put into it. We need to renew our vitality in the year ahead. So, let’s rejoice and find pleasure with others during the coming season. Trust yourself to make the circumstances better just by spreading holiday cheer wherever you go.

This season especially, give thanks for your family, their survival, and your will and strength to carry on. Celebrate the season with your loved ones. Celebrate with passion and with a renewed spirit of trust and optimism. We are indestructible people.