2020: A Year of Reflection & Resilience (Pt. 1 of 2)
A Collection of Newbridge Family Lessons in Growth and Vulnerability
Right now, we are being bombarded with advertisements, emails, and social media posts about weight loss, New Year’s goals and resolutions, and ‘New Year New Me’. While this material is intended to be encouraging, sometimes we can lose sight of what we are already doing, what we have already accomplished, and how resilient we are.
Here at Newbridge Health & Wellness, we value honoring and celebrating our victories and successes, both big and small. The year 2020 was anything but ordinary, and brought unique challenges and obstacles that we have had to overcome. 2020 has taught us important lessons in patience, resilience, community, self-care, life values and vision, and the importance of love in the presence of difficulty.
We wanted to share and celebrate some of the lessons our staff have learned this past year, and how we plan on bringing those lessons into 2021. These are lessons in gratitude, resilience, perseverance, courage, and hope.
Founder & Functional Medicine Nurse Practitioner
I am incredibly happy to be dipping my toes in 2021! Twenty Twenty was a devastating year in so many ways. YET somehow, through it all, a multitude of good things happened. One positive is that Covid forced many of us to slow down, and enabled us to practice just “being” rather than always “doing”. I have always been very motivated and ambitious, and as a consequence, have sometimes felt more like a “human doing” than a “human being”. There has always been more schooling to pursue, another medical or health conference to attend or speak at, a protocol to develop, an international volunteer trip to embark on, someone who needed caring for, homework to help with, kids who needed healing, parents who were ill and needed support, friends who needed a shoulder to lean on, an over 100-year-old house that needed fixing, foreign places to visit, a husband, children and family to love, the perfect campsite or hike to discover, a business to grow, staff to nurture, and so much more. Slowing down a bit has been good for my soul. Owning and operating a business in the middle of a pandemic and economic downturn has still necessitated much more “doing” than I’d choose, but through it all, I have worked on balancing my yin and yang, and that is good.
2020 was a year for the books. Not necessarily in the accomplishments or achievements that I can put my name on but more so in that it was a year that changed perspectives and forced us to get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Keeping a stock pile of masks in the car, having to do solo grocery trips so that our toddler wouldn’t get exposed, missing out on activities, celebrations, and holidays with family and friends, an absurd amount of screen time and just living a new normal. I really struggled with feeling homebound and had to do a lot of reflection about why I felt like I needed to get out of the house in the first place. I choose not to live with regrets or carry too much guilt but instead for 2021, focus on moving forward and embracing things I cannot change, really being present in each moment with my family as much as possible, and looking forward to another year of opportunity. With every down you have to seek out an up, and as I went through the sudden loss of my grandfather in October, we were blessed to learn in November that we are expecting another baby in August of 2021. As always, the warmer weather of Spring and Summer will be a welcome transition, too.
Just surviving 2020 is an accomplishment in itself, so if you’re reading this – Congratulations, you did it!
Billing & Insurance Specialist
The year 2020 brought many ups and downs for many of us, myself included. My year started off with getting engaged, only to have the excitement dampened by the world drastically changing around us. Then, my job was put on hold and shifted to look completely different, like so many other aspects of reality. At first, it felt as if this uncertainty would be temporary, but as we all have come to know that wasn’t the case. As the year continued, I experienced a close loss, my grandfather, which made saying goodbye more difficult than one would have hoped. A week following, my dad had a terrifying accident which required 8 hours of surgery and the outcome was very unknown. At that point, I felt as if I just wanted 2020 to be over so my family could heal and move on. However, my fiancé Jack reminded me that there were so many wonderful things that had happened during the year and although it wasn’t what we had hoped for or envisioned; 2020 had little blessings in disguise.
I learned that self-care daily was essential in my health but also something so foreign to me. Taking the time to check in with myself and others became a significant part of my personal growth and overall well-being throughout the year. With it brought a transition to more phone calls and virtual games and celebrations with loved ones. It was also a time to immerse and nurture myself within nature to focus on more “me” time. Looking back on 2020 I realized that maybe I needed to slow down, step back and focus on a deeper appreciation and love of ourselves and others.
Whenever anyone asked me how my 2020 was going, I found myself at a loss for words, only being able to respond with “weird”. How else can you encapsulate a year that has taken us through one of the most formidably unique experiences of a lifetime? A year of hardship, a year of loss, and a year of change and yet, for me, 2020 was a year of discovery. Of who I am, what I want to be, and of the world around me.
Some of the most profoundly impactful parts of this year for me were, ironically, the parts spent alone. Time free to explore myself, and reflect on my identity, expression, and intuition, was uncomfortable, and hard at first, but it has brought me an ultimate sense of self awareness and respect for who I am. Investing in myself through performing rituals of self discovery, like shadow work, meditation, and mindfulness have been welcome moments of emotional growth and restoration, and dissecting philosophies of life and thought have given me new perspectives on meaning and experience.
Continuing on the theme of meaning and experience, this year has been one where I have been forced to engage with my innate desires and forge the path towards who I want to be. Through grounding myself in the little things: the way I can feel the excitement bubble inside me when speaking about things I am passionate about, the blush of joy I feel when greeting a new patient, and learning how to take those feelings and make them into something bigger than myself has been transformative. Focusing on the study and practice of healing, learning how to support, care, and uplift others, and the overwhelming beauty of nature and the human body, and bringing those lessons into my life makes me proud of the person I am becoming and at peace with who I am now.
Undoubtedly the most formative part of my year was building and engaging in the community around me. Being present for others, through advocacy, organizing, and activism, and making a commitment to fighting for change, justice, and equity was a vital part of my year. The connection to humanity I have felt during protesting, a collective outpouring of raw emotion, entangled with the pain, strength, and resolution of so many, is one of the memories I will never forget. Acknowledging our history; as humans, as a nation, and as individuals, and confronting not with performative action, but with the tools of resolve, empathy, and change, will be a lesson to take forward in 2021.
I believe 2020 was meant to teach us something as a community. This past year was one of global change as well as personal in so many ways. This year, I graduated university, applied for my first full time job, received my first rejection letter, moved halfway across the country to a place I had never been before, made friends, lost family members, and voted in my first presidential election. While there were many days I felt hopeless, directionless, and unsure for the first time in my life of what comes next, there were also many days that I felt proud, resilient, and absolutely content with the small things in life.
This year also challenged us in the ways we may be able to be better members of our community. We were forced to think about not only our own needs, but the needs of the people around us– our neighbors, our houseless community, our teachers, our essential workers. In times of uncertainty, we are given the opportunity to rise to the occasion and ask ourselves what we are able to do to make life better for those around us and discover our integral place within a community. These are important challenges of growth and solidarity.
While 2020 brought pain and hardship, it forced a growth in all of us and taught lessons we won’t soon forget. For me, it made me take stock of my privileges and the wonderful gifts I have been given and made me even more determined in my goal of helping others. This past year, I have done things I never thought I was capable of. I am grateful for what I have learned and I hope to bring that strength and love into all the years to come.
CranioSacral and Occupational Therapist
2020 was definitely a year that will be remembered by all of us. It was filled with the most amazing opportunities and difficult challenges, time for self reflection and personal growth, and recognition of our shared humanity and need to support one another. It was a time to reset priorities and recognize what is truly important in life. In many ways, it has pushed me to take a long hard look at what I have and have not done to contribute to my community, country and the world and to consciously seek opportunities to be a positive presence in my space.
The emergence of Covid – 19 revealed great inequities in our society and rightfully made many of us uncomfortable with that. The death of George Floyd in the city I called home for decades and the subsequent protests brought to light another inequity and an opportunity for self reflection regarding what I can do to support others. The discontent of other people was also heard in unsettling ways, offering yet another opportunity for finding ways to hold space for empathy and compassion.
Throughout this entire process, I have been blessed to work with an amazing group of people at Newbridge. I have met so many wonderful people as my practice has expanded. Opportunities for growth abound every day as I join people’s stories and walk with them for a time in their healing journeys. I have a job that allows me to work with people across the lifespan, often seeing a newborn one hour and a senior citizen a couple hours later. The work we do together is sacred in so many ways and I am honored to be in that space. Circumstances at another job changed when Covid hit and initially that was a bit scary. Looking back, I realize that the timing was perfect and I would not have had the time to expand my practice and the roles I fill at Newbridge without that change in circumstances. The timing was perfect, things have progressed as they should and my heart is full of gratitude. Looking forward to 2021, I am expecting more opportunities for growth, collaboration with co-workers and time in that sacred space we call healing.
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Our staff work collaboratively to ensure that our patients are receiving the personalized, holistic care and treatment needed to help bring about optimal health and healing.