What a curious thing it is, this year. I sit here at this desk worrying about which customer will buy and which customer will sell, worrying about the June water lateral that’s being dug in November. I worry about the wallpaper looking right and about my son’s college applications. I worry about whether or not my daughter will someday care about her grades, and I worry about this Sonos speaker that needs some unique Sonos wall-mount and there’s only one left at Best Buy in Lake Geneva. Should I buy it now, or just wait until next week when I actually need it? These are the things on my mind this morning.
But up the road there’s a young man with a younger family and he’s very sick. It’s not from Covid, which shouldn’t have to be said but during this year everyone assumes the worst, and apparently the worst is Covid. I worry about this man and his frame of mind, I worry about his wife and his children. I drive past the house on my way from being busy to being busier, and I wonder about time standing still in a household like that. I wonder about life and about today and about tomorrow, and I wonder if what it is that I worry about actually matters. Sometime this week a customer will be upset with me, about something. Should I let them know that none of this real estate business actually matters?
Perhaps what matters is the family who is struggling this Thanksgiving. My business thrived because of Covid, at least in part, which makes me even more spoiled than I already am. Imagine owning a business that has been forced to shut down. A business that was tough enough when there were no external forces at play aside from the restaurant down the road that served a better fish fry and offered it for $1.25 less than yours. Imagine being that owner faced with a crippling 2020 and the uncertainty of 2021. Imagine what that Thanksgiving looks like. It’s still better than what the family up the road is contending with, but who am I to suggest that what I have has been somehow uniquely earned?
What if this Thanksgiving we just try to pause and take a breath? This hasn’t been a great year, but it is life. Life isn’t always fun. It isn’t always fair. It always ends in pain and death. I’ve been blessed during a year that has been so very difficult for so many, and this year I’m going to be quietly thankful while working hard to not forget those who haven’t been so fortunate. Say a prayer for the family up the road, and for the business owner around the corner, and be thankful.