Empower

7 Things I’ve Unexpectedly Learned to Love in 2020

As I’m forcefully trying to find the silver linings of 2020, there are some things I have unexpectedly learned to love and appreciate.

  1. Jojo Siwa

I’m starting light-hearted with my adoration of one of the cutest, spunkiest kids on TikTok. I can’t wait for her to turn 18 and be out of her contract as the 2010-version of a Lisa Frank superstar. I stopped watching Dance Moms before she joined, but I have learned to love Jojo this year.

2. Sparkling Water

I’ve never understood the LaCroix hype. Sure, I would drink it at the pregame for a vodka soda, but I could never drink a can of sparkling water at the office, even if it was free. Now, I’ve come to love (any) sparkling water with a splash of cranberry juice. One might call it a mocktail, but that’s definitely not intentional. I think I just like my sparkling water a little sweetened. I’m trying to not overanalyze this.

3. FaceTime First Dates

First dates are tough and exhausting, so I’m glad that FaceTime dates have become a thing in 2020. For one, it’s great to ensure you’re not getting catfished so you don’t die on a first date, and it also prevents you from meeting up with people unnecessarily during a pandemic. We must be selective and prioritize! I’ll never forget my first FaceTime date in May… he kept sneaking rips of his Juul when he thought I couldn’t see. After two hours of chatting and realizing he wasn’t my person, he told me I would “forever be the one that got away in quarantine.” Thankfully, none of been as bad as that since. I did create a great spreadsheet to keep track of the dates since virtual can be hard. Let me know if you’d like the template 🙂

4. Sleeping in

Before the pandemic, I was a proud morning person. I would teach and/or workout at 5 or 6am most days of the week. Now, I can’t imagine such unnecessary torture. I now prefer my workouts mid-late afternoon, and I like to relax in the mornings. And, it helps that since moving out of my apartment where I was blinded by the lack of curtains, my insomnia has significantly improved. I no longer need sleeping meds to sleep, which makes it that much more luxurious to sleep in on my own.

5. Les Mills Workouts

You have no idea how much I miss group fitness classes. I fantasize about throwing around barbells and high-fiving strangers. Alas, home workouts are super convenient, and Les Mills has been my favorite, thanks to a gifted membership via aSweatLife. Even without, it would be worth the $10 monthly fee. Their BodyCombat classes have reminded me how much I love kickboxing classes (which I’m now teaching virtually at Jax Yoga!). My other favorites are Grit and CxWorx. 

6. Painting

I first bought painting supplies in April because my room at my dad’s new house needed some décor that wasn’t just photos of me. Everything was on backorder, so I decided to get crafty and paint for myself. My dad thought I was crazy. I mean, I probably am, but I’m actually pretty decent at painting, and it’s been an incredibly fun and relaxing hobby for me. Acrylics and watercolors have been my two favorite mediums. As for random 2020 purchases/endeavors, I’m much better at painting than I am at rollerblading!!

7. My Dad

The biggest surprise has been living with my dad for six months of this year. I have spent more one-on-one time with him in 2020 than I have in my entire life. Yes, he can annoy the hell out of me, but he also cracks me up, and I’m realizing how much I resemble him. It’s been great to build more of a relationship with him, especially as an adult. I don’t see my mom and sisters as much since we’re not in the same household, but it is incredibly nice to live in such close proximity to them, too.

Alas, I am more than ready for 2021. I miss Chicago, I miss my friends, and I MISS CLUBBING. Let’s hope 2021 is at least marginally better, and I hope you find your own silver linings as you reflect upon this chaotic year. 

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