Our 2021 Christmas letter

Every year we get lovely Christmas update letters tucked into cards from friends and relatives that summarize their year. While some of these letters mention the curveballs that are sometimes thrown, most of the time the letters gush with news of grandchild births, graduations, promotions, exciting travels and overall good fortune.

I view these letters as precursors to the social media status updates where people pick and choose what information to share with others. I’ve actually participated in this letter-writing ritual from time to time. But not for a number of years.

This year, I come to you with a version of what our 2021 family letter would sound like if I were to actually send one. I hope you will read it with the understanding that I’m not complaining because, despite how difficult the year has been, I’m grateful for the tender mercies that have been given to me and my family. This letter just expresses the raw reality of our year. So, my summary will include a heavy dose of sarcasm to get me through it. Here goes……

Hello friends and family,

Well, another year is on the books and Casa Fischer is still standing. It’s been quite a year and we can’t wait to share it with you.

Coming off the pandemic, we had high hopes for 2021. Just two months into the promising new year, headaches began to bother Entrepreneur again. Since we didn’t have any vacay resort fees or airline tickets already paid for, we weren’t sure what was going on. A brain MRI affirmed the news that his original brain surgery area was lighting up the scan like a left over Christmas tree. Only after another trip into his brain did the glorious news of no new cancer end our anxiety. He’d suffered a minor brain bleed that pooled in that area and dried. A quick clean up of the dried blood and he was back in business.

With this good news, we began to (re)plan an anniversary trip for September. In 2020, our 40th anniversary European river cruise trip was canceled due to the pandemic. Since travel opened back up, we thought a trip Mexico the end of September surely would lift our spirits and give the virus time to die out over the summer. We coordinated our trip with friends, packed and dreamed of turquoise waters and champagne-colored beaches all summer long. We dutifully got our booster shots. Two days before our flight we were exposed to Covid. Of course, resort fees and airline tickets were already paid. 

Our Covid exposure was through Entrepreneur’s parents….also fully vaccinated. This began our long decent into an unforgettable tour of hell for the next two months. I will be leaving a scathing TripAdvisor review.

Entrepreneur’s father was immediately admitted into the hospital with breathing issue and never recovered. Covid destroyed his lungs in short order even though he was vaxxed. We quarantined until we both could get tested which, miraculously, were negative. Despite valiant efforts by hospital medical teams, after one month on oxygen he left this world the end of October for one that is covid free. His mom weathered the virus at home….alone…without the fun antics Kevin coordinated for intruders.

After we laid him to rest with military honors, Entrepreneur’s mom was literally home alone and we began the uphill climb to settle all his dad’s accounts and ease her into a new life. New routines can be fun…unless you’re prone to anxiety, which causes your blood pressure to skyrocket faster than Elon Musk’s SpaceX starship.  For that, she was checked in for a quick stay at a local B&B called the Emergency Room.

After she came back to earth, all was going well until she fell. Because we didn’t have enough to keep us busy, she added a concussion, brain bleed, black eye, bruised face, fractured wrist, and broken bone in her pelvis to the schedule. A week’s stay in another B&B had us clearing our schedules to stay with her every day until she was improved enough to move to a nicer B&B called a rehab center.

One family member sent a beloved pet over the Rainbow Bridge during this time and another suffered an ectopic pregnancy resulting in surgery to remove the ruptured fallopian tube. When it rains……..

But, back to the pandemic…..2019 and 2020 forever changed the way people purchased things they couldn’t live without and the check processing service our business provided to community banks finally up and died of unnatural causes. Without the benefit of the pandemic, the industry could have lasted a few more years. But, because significantly fewer people were writing checks, we were finally able to close the business and try this concept called early retirement. Maybe we’ll try and plan another vacation.

May your holidays be bright and your cocoa warm this season.

Obviously written tongue in cheek, there’s only two ways to look at 2021. One is to descend into despair at the cruelty of life and become cynical and pessimistic. The other is to learn the art of pivoting and understand flexibility is the key to not getting bent out of shape (the Gumby philosophy on life). There’s more going on in my world, but this is enough depressing news for now. Our faith is getting us through these hard times and helping us to gain perspective.

I do wish each of you light during the darkness and to encourage everyone not to lose hope if  you struggle with the heaviness of anxiety or depression. I wish peace for everyone who has suffered significant loss this year or feel discouraged by the uncertainty of the future. I wish you holidays filled with hope.

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with righteous right hand. ~Isaiah 41:10

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in faith so that you overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. ~Romans 15:13

And, here’s a little something to bring a smile to every face.

8 thoughts on “Our 2021 Christmas letter

  1. Your years lately have been challenging, to say the very least. I send virtual hugs in a bushel basket, for any and all who want one. Anxiety/Depression can be killers – just did a bout of that myself this fall. Perhaps one day I’ll be moved to write a blog post, but my muse has not been pushing me that direction lately.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m trying to remain optimistic. But people really keep descending into doom and gloom. I’m not a toxic positivity sort, but really, you do have to start off with a good attitude….

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow and see no no matter how life is going there is someone having it tougher. So true the anxiety when we lose a love one. My , BP, anxiety and heart went irrational after John passed. My year was 2020 spending lot of time in a B&B as you call it lol. But 2021 some better. But oh my, your year has been one for the books and so sorry to read about your loss. Blessings to you guys in the loss of you FIL. That had to be so rough to go through. Many hugs and prayers that 2022 blesses you guys with a great year.

    Liked by 1 person

Thank you for taking time to comment. I appreciate each and every one.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.