This 2020 Holiday Letter Is One That We Can All Relate To

The final month of 2020 has blessedly arrived. Can I get an “Amen?” 

We’ve all been more than ready to be done with this year for months, as social media has proven, showing us fully decorated Christmas trees that have been up for weeks in many homes, providing beacons of shimmering light to guide us into a new year. 

But what do we think about the holiday cards tradition this year? In the past, we acknowledged that we had grown a bit weary of all the bragging and exotic excursion photoshoot letters. We wanted to see a little confirmation that everyone else’s lives were as messy and as real as ours.

Now we have one of the messiest and realest years ever on our hands. If you somehow managed to make it to a tropical island this year with “just a small group of your besties,” we really don’t want to see or hear about it. (All eyes on you, Kim Kardashian West.) 

I think we want to commiserate and wallow in our shared despair. So, give us your salty and irritated best, America. Here’s what we want to read as we sip our souped-up eggnog this year… 

Here’s my VERY honest holiday letter for 2020. (Twenty20 @ilona.shorokhova)

Holiday greetings from our house to yours (2020 Edition)

First off, sorry this is written in purple crayon and photocopied on office supply paper this year. The Wi-Fi is currently down in the house so I can’t access Shutterfly and I’ve lost all their coupons, along with my sanity. Also, no one wants their picture taken in their wrinkled, three-day-old athleisure wear and pathetic pandemic haircuts.

Our year started off in typical fashion, with bone-chilling cold weather, the usual post-holiday debt, and no one actually using the gym membership we resolved to “enjoy” in 2020. Who knew it would only get more bleak from there? 

Pandemic hell broke loose

The first whiff of spring had finally arrived when pandemic hell broke loose. We reacted appropriately, by panic-purchasing toilet paper and bleach wipes, as if we’d all be struck with weak bowels for months on end. 

Sophie, who’s now a high school sophomore and Tik-Tok addict, makes infrequent appearances downstairs to complain there’s not enough frozen fruit for her smoothies and to repeatedly declare that her “life is no bueno” because she’s missing out “on lowkey everything” and she “only likes the dog.” On that one point we can all agree.

Ethan is currently “colleging” from his makeshift basement bedroom, majoring in Business and minoring in Call of Duty-War Zone. Every other day is a “big yikes” because we run out of milk and cereal and “Bruh, I’m starving and can’t focus while I’m owning those noobs playing NBA2K.” 

Mike and I have both been working from home since mid-March, which is a bit of an adjustment, but no worries we started virtual couples therapy in April. It forces us to remove our noise-canceling headphones once a week and speak actual words to each other, rather than rely on the rudimentary sign language our family has perfected over eight months. 

We both have also developed some new hobbies and skills this year. He mixes up innovatively potent cocktails every afternoon around 3pm while I stress-knit half scarves that no one will ever wear. I have made it a point to prioritize self-care this year though, with frequent YouTube restorative yoga sessions while locked in my closet and re-watching of Schitt’s Creek episodes nightly in the tub, armed with a little Moira Rosé.

This summer we even tried camping

Over the summer we decided to drive a few hours to the mountains to try our hands at camping – a family first. We lasted for three hours in the wilderness, at which point the kids had consumed all the food we’d brought for four days, we’d been devoured alive by mosquitos, and we realized we’d left our stash of toilet paper at home. 

Fall brought numerous false alarms about school-reopening and several rounds of panicked COVID-testing after social-distancing fails. It was a glum Thanksgiving at home, sans extended family, due to concern for the grandparents, and the fact that so many extended family members are no longer speaking to each other after our protracted election season. 

As December begins, we’re all looking forward to the excitement of the holidays. More days spent in sweatpants, more bread baking, utilizing the new fire pit that Mike bought in October and is still attempting to put together, and bickering over what we’ll watch on Netflix for Family Movie Nights. 

So, friends, not gonna lie – kindly do not drop by this year to spread any holiday cheer – or germs. We’re hunkering down (still), eating all the carbs (still), and simply dreaming of normalcy (still). 

Check your list, Santa. Unless you’ve got vials of vaccines in that bag of yours, keep moving along and just make room for Dr. Fauci. We don’t need any new clothes (Why would we?) or gadgets – thank you, Amazon Prime. 

Wishing everyone a healthy 2021 and a speedy return to precedented times!

The Jones Family (Cousins of that other Jones Family)

More to Read:

Kids, I’ll Try Not to Be a Pain About the Holidays

About Marybeth Bock

Marybeth Bock, MPH, is Mom to two young adults and one delightful hound dog. She has logged time as a military spouse, childbirth educator, college instructor and freelance writer. She lives in Arizona and thoroughly enjoys research and writing - as long as iced coffee is involved. You can find her work on numerous websites and in two books. Find her on Facebook and Instagram

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