2020: A Developing View

This blog started life like a little maggot-y thing. Small and moaning and grim. Trying to pretend it was logical and thoughtful and dispassionate and realistic.  

I didn’t like it one bit, but there it was. Off it went to B. Then there was a Thought in the Night! And now it’s a winged creature of beauty — from miserable beginnings great things can grow, you know. 

The Maggoty Version 

2020 has been, fundamentally, rubbish. I did a count of some of the personal bad and good bits, and the bad outweighed the good by a very long way. You want to see? 


  • Painted fence 
  • Got dog 
  • Enjoyed children 
  • Got better at my job 
  • Climbed all mountains in Wicklow 
  • Fabulous new bike 
  • Kind friends 
  • Ignite babies 


  • Most excellent friend passed away 
  • Father-in-law passed away 
  • Lots of serious injuries, long-term conditions and health problems in friends and relatives 
  • Lost hope in dearly-held dreams 
  • Bike stolen 
  • Unbelievable series of expensive and logistical difficulties in every area 
  • No hugs 
  • No proper plans 
  • No music 
  • No live Ignite 
  • Pandemic 

If you actually count the bullet points, the bad list is only one item longer. But that’s because I made it more compact in this version, and anyway, the magnitude of each item is greater. (And the fence is only a stop-gap.) 

The maggoty conclusion:  

I don’t like moaning. I’m pedantic and always look for the other point of view, even when it’s to my disadvantage. I don’t usually add up the score of a year and hold it to account (partly due to a very bad memory for dates). I don’t believe that an arbitrary thing like the invention of the calendar should be used as a measure of human experience. But this year (and it’s perfectly justified, you know): 2020 is a rubbish year and that’s the best I can say of it so there! 

The Winged Thought in the Night 

Yes, well, this is harder to express. Bullet points can’t sum up human experience either, I suppose, any more than a calendar can. I’ve lost hope in lots of things; probably we all have. Life doesn’t look like I thought it would. I don’t know how long my patience will last and I think I’m pretty near the end of the rope; the bottom of the pit. But actually, the rope has never yet reached the end. There are always further depths to plumb. Metaphors can always be stretched a bit more. I think I’m finding a bigger kind of hope. I can wait a bit longer to find out how life should look. There are small adventures to plan, and I can see friends smile, if I can’t hug them. I’ve discovered I want to hug them — I never knew I cared very much anyway! And I really can’t see the point of complaining. There just isn’t one. Hope isn’t about now. It’s really, really, really long term, even when it seems quite unjustified. Maybe that’s the definition of an optimist? One who hopes when hope seems lost? (I hope it isn’t the definition of folly.) 

Yes, mostly it’s about hope.  The Maggoty version was all about small, obvious hopes being properly dashed. The Winged version is all about the discovery of new, more important, transcendent hopes. Then translating them into real life.  

I’m not quite sure I’ve reached the final butterfly version, and I’m not going to try to put this into more concrete words. You can do your own. So: 2020 has been interesting and a valuable learning experience. Could we have break time now please? 

Image: Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

One Response to “2020: A Developing View”

  1. Marie

    Adeleh, what a wonderful blog – I love the way you have captured your own internal processing and sharing it so succinctly. In the words of an old Jim Reeves song “Whispering Hope, oh how welcome thy voice, in my sorrow rejoice”

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