by Transmute Jun
If 2020 was a recovery from an unexpected bad event, 2021 has been a series of sucker punches. Multiple times, we have felt like things were getting back to normal, only to be told that we have to step backwards (most recently with the Omicron scare). People clearly want to travel, to see friends, and to attend events again, yet the hurdles keep re-appearing, just when we think that they are gone. And in a holiday season known for gift-giving, supply shortages and shipping issues have made things difficult.
What all of this has taught us is that we need to focus on what we can do, and to take full advantage of opportunities when they arise. There are so many things that I used to take for granted, yet they have now regained their special luster. Naturally, I have spent a lot of time with my immediate family (in our home) over the past 2 years, but I have seen little of my extended family, or my friends. And while I still gave gifts over the Christmas season, what was truly special was the ability to see people again, to give them hugs and speak with them in person, rather than through an impersonal screen. This was by far the best part of attending in-person conventions this year, particularly Comic Con Special Edition (CCSE).
Yet the most important thing of all is that we have to maintain our hope in the future. It is hope that gives us life and keeps us strong. While there were many setbacks in 2021, there were also strides forward. As we learn to live with a virus that is quickly becoming endemic, we have to imagine the future that we want and work to achieve it. As we see others working to meet their goals, we should do what we can to help. It is only by coming together and working together that we will make it through, and deep down, I know that we can.
Ultimately, my wish for 2022 is that we can all take these lessons to heart: to cherish our families and friends, and the time that we can spend together (whether at home, at cons, or elsewhere), and to make the most of the opportunities we are granted. We can work together as friends, as con-goers, and as a society, to find our way back to a world of peace and freedom, and without fear.
May your New Year’s 2022 celebrations be filled with hope and promise.