A bit of frost on a Gorse bush – beautiful!

So today we finally say goodbye and good riddance to 2020. We marked it with a lovely walk up on Devil’s Dyke (see photo above).

My natural tendency is to look for the positives, but that can feel a bit forced, and a bit ‘everything is marvellous’.

For me, the secret is probably the way in which we choose to re-frame things. The stories we tell become our own reality, after all.

So yes, 2020 was the year we all got locked down.

But it was also the year we got to spend more time with our families.

2020 was the year I could no longer afford my car.

But it was also the year I became a far more competent cyclist and can now commute to work on my bike.

2020 was the year I could no longer afford my rented office.

But it was also the year I got a garden office that has proved a wonderful addition.

2020 was the year a doctor finally confirmed that I had severe ADHD and had had it since birth.

But it was also the year I got help and medication for the condition: and it’s working. I am learning to forgive myself for past under-achievements.

2020 was the year I lost virtually all my consultancy work. And with it, my sense of purpose.

But it was also the year I took up teaching again and have loved every single minute of it.

2020 was the year I haven’t seen my extended family since March.

But it was also the year that my brother survived Covid and got promoted, and my parents and M.I.L. avoided the virus altogether.

2020 was the year my website died.

But it was also the year I learnt to build it back, bigger and better, with a better range of resources than ever.

2020 was the year schools were restricted for months.

But it was also the year that through technology I managed to connect and work with more teachers than at any time in the past ten years.

2020 was the year I had almost no work for the entire summer.

But it was also the year I had the time to be able to turn Maths Week England into the largest national maths festival in the world.

2020 was the year our church closed its doors to live services.

But it was also the year it was able to reach thousands more people than before with the good news of Jesus through the power of the internet.

So yeah, it’s been pretty terrible, let’s be honest. But maybe, just maybe, what they say about silver linings was never truer than it was this year.

I hope your 2021 will be rich with blessings.

7 Responses

  1. And Brighton may have only won 5 games of football in 2020…but we’re still a Premier League team!!!

  2. 2020 was the year I heard about your work on Twitter- thanks for the virtual input through the various courses you did for OU. Hoping 2021 is another year of discovery for you too in faith and life in general.

  3. Powerful reflection Andrew.
    I love your honesty. I hadn’t realised the extent of restrictions but amazing to also hear how many more people you reached.
    Love what you do.

  4. Lovely reflection and well done for finding so many positives! I have quoted your ADHD webinar many times as a parent and a teacher, so please can you add to your reflections how much you have helped others by sharing your experience of having ADHD.

    You still managed to make a difference and that is the most important thing!

  5. All good wishes for the coming year and many thanks for the excellent and informative maths forum you have provided in your monthly newsletters. So glad you have rebuilt your website so that you can continue to bring the magic to maths to many more schools and pupils.

  6. Thank yo for sharing your reflections – very moving indeed. A real testimony to the lows and highs of 2020. May God bless you this year, and going forward!

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