As the year starts to wind down, open enrollment comes to an end, and we prepare for the holidays, I thought I would reach out and wish everyone a very Merry Christmas, and let’s make 2021 a Happy and Prosperous New Year.

To say that 2020 was a challenging year is obviously an understatement. If I look back at this time last year, 2020 looked to be a bountiful and wonderful year and optimism was everywhere. Deb and I had just returned from Norway after seeing the Northern Lights and having a wonderful time with the people we met there. All was right in the world and we were excited for Christmas and watching the eyes of our grandchildren as they opened presents and watched for Santa. There were no concerns of getting together, that Santa was diseased, or that we would spread droplets of death on others. I recall having a really bad cold and worrying that I might give it to others, but this time of year always presented that issue. I also remember thinking of all the things that needed to happen in 2020 and I was planning on how to make them happen. It is so funny how our plans can be changed so quickly. With that said, I hope each and every one of you is taking the time to plan for next year. When the calendar turns to the new year, will you be ready to capitalize on it? Now is the time to begin for success next year. Over the years, I learned that if I got off to a good start in January, the rest of the year was much manageable. I also found that if I had a bad January, it seemed that I was always playing catch-up the rest of the year.

I know a lot has changed and the methods I may have used are outdated and I have to consider the “new normal”, but I am too old and ornery to adjust. I like the old normal where people met, talked, and enjoyed each other’s company. We didn’t fear each other or hide. We took the risk that we might catch a cold and/or the flu and unfortunately, it could be serious. I also took precautions, especially during this time of year. Washing hands, covering your mouth when coughing or sneezing, and most importantly, not going out when I didn’t feel good. These seemed to work well but obviously, they were not failsafe. With all of that, I didn’t lock myself in my room and wait for spring. I enjoyed life, worked constantly, went to church regularly, and kept stress to a minimum. I will continue to do these things in 2021 just as I have in the past. I refuse to be part of the “new normal”. Others may like the “new normal” and that is perfectly fine. I will not impose on them and it is my hope they return the favor. To ask me to join in their fear, isolation, and hypochondria will fall on deaf ears. I will not subject myself or others to solitary confinement and will do my best to continue to earn a living for myself and our team. I am not sure how those who get paid by our tax dollars can tell someone that they can’t earn a living but have to pay taxes anyway can get away with it. I have said from the beginning of this pandemic, if you want it to end quickly, stop paying government officials, government employees, and all academia their wages and see how fast the whole thing ends. It is so easy to say that others will have to make ends meet without a job when you are still getting paid like normal. Stop compensating Dr. Fauci, State Governors, or any of these so-called experts and see how they cope. They don’t live in the real world where every dollar is spent before it’s even earned. Have them explain to their children why Christmas is being canceled. They have decided that they don’t need to live by the same rules as they decree.

Of course, the first thing I hear is, “the science and experts recommend” this or that. Well, science is never absolute and experts can easily be wrong. It wasn’t that long ago that science and experts thought that blood-letting was a cure-all. It wasn’t until someone stood up and said that it might not be useful in all situations. Today, we would cringe at the idea of draining blood to cure a disease and if you asked most people, they would state that science has proved it to be a bad idea. Yet, believe it or not, there is a part of the “science” that still holds true. All science is constantly adjusting and if no one is questioning the experts then advances can never be achieved. We always need those who question and defy what the experts state.

I will wrap up by telling you to celebrate the holidays, stop worrying about what tomorrow might bring, and love the people who are most dear to you. Make 2021 your best year ever and start it now. A positive attitude is more healing than all the medicine in the world and a hug from a grandchild will warm the heart and clear the mind. Don’t deny that to those who need it most. Oh, and celebrate the birth of Jesus, it is the reason for the season.