Design

What’s Your Second Chance for This Year?

pottery

In January 2020, before there was any worry of staying indoors for the foreseeable future, I was on the hunt for a new hobby…

I do this every new year, hoping to enrich myself and learn something new — one year it was to go to at least one Broadway show a month!

Last year, I had the idea to finally try my hand at a pottery class. I’ve always imagined myself as the kind of person who walks around in overalls and a crop top underneath, pottery clay smeared lightly across my cheek as I sat at a wheel and made mugs and bowls to my heart’s content. But, last year, it was not to be. As soon as I had settled on the perfect pottery studio, lockdown started and it wasn’t for just two weeks like we all thought. I was bummed as my hopes of being a master potter diminished with every month.

I’d forgotten all about it, until a few weeks ago when I noticed that the pottery studio I had been interested in was opening again, with COVID restrictions. I looked at the available classes and found a beginner’s course with one more vacancy. That day, I ordered an apron and planned my future midweek morning walks to class.

Taking this second chance made me realize all the other second chances I would have this year, as more and more people get vaccinated, and the world opens up little by little. I’m looking forward to dancing on a sweaty dance floor with a piña colada in hand, seeing plays in a theater, and sitting in a quiet café. All the things I put on hold last year are almost on the menu again, and I feel grateful for the possibility of experiencing them all.

What’s something you put on hold last year that you’re looking forward to this year?

P.S. Do you have a hobby and what did you learn this year?

(Photo by Carey Shaw/Stocksy.)

  1. Tshego says...

    Trying this apothecary garden again!

  2. Laurel says...

    I’m late to the party on this discussion but this year I *finally* enrolled in a course for interior design. I’ve wanted to be a designer for a DECADE. Life happens, babies happen, etc. But last year really put things in perspective. Get busy living. So I enrolled and am a few months in! The hours fly by at night. This is on top of my job and family, but it doesn’t feel like a burden.

  3. A lot of these second chances seem like things that can be experienced in a virtual world, too. I’ve pivoted to teaching adult piano lessons and classes remotely, and it’s so fulfilling! I get to work with people all over the world, and teaching online has actually motivated me to learn more things online. I’ve taken a tarot reading course, tried new dance classes and remote personal training, and am starting a business class for growing my online work soon. I’m excited to keep trying new things online!

    • Yes, great point, Kelsey! Where I am is in an emergency zone, so we’re a long ways from opening back up again, but I’ve been embracing new opportunities anyways! I’ve picked a language back up again after a long hiatus (using Duolingo events to have conversation groups), taken a ton of one-hour classes on all sorts of subjects through Creative Mornings Field Trips, and signed up for some longer training classes too through other local programs. I’ve done two ballet classes through Zoom classes, but I lost my job so I mainly do a free approach by “meeting up with” a ballet friend by using a video call and a free online video that we time with the old 3-2-1 approach to synchronize). And I’ve gotten back into reading again this past year through ebooks from my library. And I’ve started meeting with an online writers group (London Writers Hour). And I even went to a conference using the Remo platform, which allows people to mingle, similar to in real life! I’ve been so incredibly surprised by all the opportunities that are available through the internet!

  4. Camila says...

    For so many years I have wanted to speak several languages so last year I started learning Italian which I totally love. It makes me so happy to see all the progress that I have made in just a few months. This year I’m continuing with my Italian lessons and I have also started taking German lessons. So far I can say that I speak Spanish and English really well and my goal is to be fluent in four languages by the time I’m 30 (I’m 26 but I’m a fast learner). The truth is that before the pandemic my absolute passion was traveling the world and I got quite depressed at the beginning of the pandemic because I had to cancel a trip to Russia that was a long time dream. Learning languages now is a hopeful way to think about the future, because I hope to use those languages to make the most of future trips when the world looks a little better.

    • Tara says...

      Would love to know what book/course/method you’re using to learn Italian or any of the other languages you mentioned. Thank you!

  5. We sold our house right at the start of the first COVID lockdown in Brisbane Australia. Flew to NZ and now live in a caravan. We are 4 months in and only managed to travel a small section of NZ so far. It’s amazing. Everything I hoped for and so much more. Life is slower and faster at the same time. The slow stuff is the good stuff, like playing with my nearly 2 year old and homeschooling my 5 year old. Exploring all the free things like the beach, parks, bush walks. The fast stuff is the boring stuff namely chores (I hardly notice chores now). It’s the total opposite of 9-5 life. We are also building a remote business, one that we had in Australia but couldn’t dedicate the time to, one that makes my husband so happy to do, http://www.oliverarmstrongtherapy.com. It’s totally our Covid second chance of finding meaning, success which we have defined for ourselves, and time with our children in our life. I still pinch myself that this is our real life.

    • Laurel says...

      Love this! NZ is stunning. Well done you!

  6. Courtney says...

    “try your hand” at a pottery class :)

  7. Samantha says...

    I have two! I held off getting a haircut because of covid for over a year, the longest I’ve ever gone! I experienced a whole year’s worth of hair discoveries: it’s curly when I don’t blow dry it! It looks really beautiful long! It’s a darker, richer brown than it’s ever been before! So when I finally got a haircut last week, I splurged on a really fun salon in town with a stylist that has a great reputation and I let her do whatever she wants and now I have a great, messy, wash and go shag which I never thought I’d have!

    Also, I’ve always, always wanted to be a writer, but I always let a fear of vulnerability, or failure, or an uncertain career path talk me out of it. But now, this year, I’m writing all the time! I told myself that I’m a writer if I write, who cares about all the other stuff like readership, publishing, even a career change. If that happens, it happens, and if not, that’s fine too! With all that pressure off, I’m having the most fun finding my process and voice as a writer, thinking of just wild, silly things I can write about, starting a blog, it’s so much fun! So not as much of a covid second chance, but a life second chance.

  8. AMK says...

    Photography! After 15 years in financial services and believing I wasn’t creative, I learned that I actually am creative! I don’t know why but I thought this, but I equated creativity with painting and drawing. After starting The Artist Way by Julia Cameron, I have had the courage to accept the deep deep pull I have towards photography (black and white photography actually). My soul and heart are alive. It’s my calling. It’s my passion. I never thought I had a calling before…but I have finally given myself the space to explore and create. I’m on IG @adrianamartinphotography and am learning so much every day 🙏🏽🙏🏽

    • K says...

      Oh wow, AMK! Just clicked through to your IG handle… Such beautiful, moving work. I am so happy for you (and the world!) that you’ve discovered your very own calling :) No doubt about it – you’re creative ;) and talented, to boot!

    • AMK says...

      Wow, K! Thank you so so much for your incredibly kind words 😭😭😭😭🙏🏽🙏🏽💕I want people – especially women – to know how truly beautiful they are just as they are right at this moment in time. I am very moved by your words of encouragement 🙏🏽🙏🏽

  9. Charli says...

    I really want to take a modern dance class. Three years ago I signed up for “Absolute Beginner Adult Ballet” because I never took dance in my entire life. It was challenging in ways I had never been challenged. I am a strength athlete and I enjoy other physical pursuits like long distance cycling and trail running and kayakying…all things where I push myself to lift more, go further, run faster, etc. A few years ago I realized that I had no concept of using my body for creative expression instead of feats of strength. I just don’t MOVE that way and when I watch amazing music videos with modern choreography (like On the Floor by Perfume Genius, Taste by Rhye, Frequency by Sylvan Esso…) I am envious. I want to do that!

    • BL says...

      Thank you for sharing. I consider myself a similar type of athlete and have struggled recently to find a form of “creative expression instead of feats of strength” that fits for me. Your words help me put words to what I’m seeking. Maybe I’ll give beginner dance a try! I’m also interested in The Class. Cheers and take care.

    • I did beginner ballet (as a true beginner) at 37 and loved it. I did it for six years before Covid, and now I just do the barre part at home. It was scary to do as a beginner, but I am so glad I did! Though I’m not as graceful as I’d like to be, I have a lot of fun (and I’m more graceful than I used to be!). Plus, it’s a form of exercise that I really enjoy. I almost always feel happier after doing ballet.

  10. Cece says...

    I’m late to this party, but I’m gifting myself another chance to feel like a whole person rather than ‘just a mum’. My kids are 5 and almost 2, and since the birth of my toddler we’ve had a run of not great luck, plus of course Covid and all its associated complications, I’ve been in survival mode for years. Between having my husband working in my living room, losing the last of my maternity leave to lockdown, home-schooling, working in an industry that’s flatlined, and trying to support my kids through all this I started to feel like such a boring two-dimensional person.

    But now, for the first time in years I have hobbies again! Admittedly they’re ‘mum’ hobbies – gardening, pilates, running, baking sourdough bread ;) but they’re all mine and they give me great joy.

    • Chloe says...

      That’s so great to hear!

      I’m right in the thick of it; my little ones are 3 and 8 months. Looking forward to being where you’re at.

      P.S. those sound like wonderful hobbies

    • Katie says...

      Cece, I feel like I could have written this about myself word for word. I see you. I am so glad you are finding what I am now calling “autonomous joy”—something that makes *you* happy that isn’t contingent on someone else’s needs/wants/demands. Good on you, mama. :)

    • Cece says...

      Katie I never knew that was the phrase for it, it makes perfect sense! Yes it’s genuinely been life-changing to have little sources of happiness that aren’t contingent on anybody else, it’s very grounding and satisfying.

      Chloe, I hear you! Honestly schools reopening and my son’s daycare running are the two biggest factors in being able to devote even a tiny bit of time to my own activities. My toddler is still very needy when he’s around and just wants me, and I think that’s so normal. But with my 5-year-old I do get little snippets of time where she’s self-reliant – a glimpse at the future!

  11. Janey says...

    You should watch the great pottery throwdown. Like great British bake off but for pottery. It’s so inspiring!

    • Kim Rhodes says...

      Yes!! I watch it at night before I go to bed :)

  12. EM says...

    therapy :)

    i’ve been postponing the idea for months, dreading the thought of virtual sessions. but i’m at the point that i realize i need it, want it, and will just accept it as it is. no better time than the present.

    • Vero says...

      I’m so happy for you. I put off therapy for YEARS and it was one of the best things I’ve ever done.

  13. Emily Pellegrino says...

    My wife and I just experienced our third failed adoption match. We’re heartbroken. So maybe it isn’t the second or third chance, but the fourth or fifth.

    • Alaina says...

      I’m so sorry, Emily. It should be easier than this. I’m rooting for you and your wife, and sending love and continued strength your way.

    • Mari says...

      Emily, hang in there…if it’s still what you want. It happened to us three times as well over a course of 5 years and now our son is turning 2 this summer. It’s also ok to decide that you only want to try once more or not at all. We decided after 4.5 years in the process we would put ourselves out there once more and if it worked out, wonderful. If it didn’t, we would reassess if we wanted to continue on our adoption journey. I know how hard it feels now. Know that it will get better. I’m sending you lots of positive energy from afar. <3<3<3

  14. Kate says...

    My second chance has happened! Last March, my husband and I were ready to start trying to have a second child. But as the pandemic was getting worse, there were too many unknowns and I didn’t feel like it was the right time to be pregnant. So we pressed pause. We started trying again in January, and I’m currently 7 weeks pregnant :) I had the positive pregnancy test almost a year to date that we decided to stop trying. Second chances do come around.

  15. Haley says...

    Have a baby! My partner and I put off getting pregnant last year due to COVID. Deciding to wait in order to have friends and family more available for support was a tough decision, but it has provided my husband and me more time in the last year to discuss what we envision our family to be and how we want to parent. Crossing fingers for that positive test in the next couple of months, and willing to put in the work ;)

  16. Tiffany says...

    I’m doing the same! I will be turning 35 this summer and have also realized during Covid that I am not working in a career I am excited about or really even interested in… So I started taking nursing school prerequisites and will be applying to an accelerated program this summer! Life is too short to wait!

    • Amy says...

      That’s so awesome, Tiffany. Way to go!

    • Catharine says...

      Nursing is magic. They think we are angels, nope, we are bad asses.

      xo,
      A Nurse, Loving Her Career Since 2007

    • annie says...

      yes! love this. you’re making it happen. go you! (go us! go everyone making a change that matters to them!)

    • Alaina says...

      Newly 35 here and just finished a Masters program in an entirely new field. I can attest to how exhilarating it was to finally spend my days doing the thing I truly love…and just to be LEARNING again. I’m so excited for you. Good luck!

    • DJ says...

      I had this same exact revelation during covid!! I thought at 31 I was stuck in my career but I already work in education so I can take my pre-reqs for free which is a huge financial assist. I am excited to do something that better matches my skillset, allows me more freedom, and just is overall a better fit for what I want out of life. My friend who is 35 gave me great advice when I worriedly said it’s going to be a 3-4 year plan. She said “well you’re going to 35 and then 40 anyways. why not fill the time?” That was such a huge relief for me to think of it that way!

  17. Tovah says...

    Kim, I just love that going back to the theater is on your list. Our industry has been COMPLETELY shut down since the pandemic began, with no real path to a safe return for awhile still. I know this CoJ community is warm hearted, open and fun, so I really, really encourage everyone to try out seeing a play or musical as soon as it’s safe to do so. I promise there’s a theatrical experience out there for everyone, and nothing compares to the magical feeling of having a story told to you LIVE and in person. Yay for plays!

  18. Lizzie says...

    I feel silly writing this, but I would love to have a second chance at making new friends. About 4 years ago I moved to a new city, and while I have a couple of close friends here, I would love to have a few more women in my life here. As an introvert who has a pretty extroverted job, I am often drained after work and find it really hard to put myself out there in my downtime. I set this as an intention in January 2020, but COVID derailed things, so I am hoping to get back on the horse and find some like-minded women friends in 2021… Wish me luck!

    • AW says...

      Good luck!!! You’re gonna do great :)

    • Aj says...

      Lizzie – I feel your pain! Introvert with and Extrovert job + total exhaustion. I’m in need of making new friends, especially with similar interests!

  19. Ms. Jean says...

    What an apt time for this post –
    I got in a horrific car accident two days ago, and by all reasonable means should be dead. I was a passenger in the car, and my friend and I had been out bar hopping for ‘SundayFunday’ and bent down to change the music, and in a split second we were in the lane of oncoming traffic.

    A few things after that cross your mind. A second chance on life, in a very literal sense. A second chance to be more intentional in your actions, get your head out of your own personal space bubble and realize that when you’re in public (driving, walking, meandering the grocery store), that you are as equally in OTHER’s personal space bubbles, and paying as much attention to the world happening around you as with the inside of your own vehicle.

    A second chance to spend days off a little differently. Drinking to fill the time, bar hopping – try, rather, to take a hike, surprise mom with bagels on Saturday. I bought roller skates to give myself a new challenge and goal, a something to work for.
    It comes to a realization that my whole life became a second chance. You wake up and truly feel like a reset button has been hit, but in a fortunate way that your job, home, and health are still in order. So you have the room and means to change and grow. Something I wont be taking lightly..

    • Lizzie says...

      Thank you for sharing, Ms. Jean. Your experience sounds terrifying – I am glad you are alright and am sending you a big hug. Here’s to second chances!

    • CEW says...

      Glad to hear you are okay. Please consider sobriety.

    • Maria says...

      Sending so much love! These things can happen so fast, and to anyone. Thank you for the reminder to see the preciousness of our life.

  20. ang says...

    Ive finally ((FINALLY!)) dusted off my old keyboard and mlved it in front of a window downstairs so I can start to learn how to play it again. I took a class in college and it’s importnat for me as a mom to be able to have music in the house and to model practice habits.

    I have relearned 2 major scales, a simple version of Pachelbel’s Canon in D, and I’m working on an arrangement of Concerning Hobbits from a youtube tutorial. All I need is a recital venue. Adult beginners are the bravest people. Who cares if we look foolish?

    My ultimate goal is to book a background gig at a supermarket or something during the holidays.

    • Rebecca says...

      Ang, I have to tell you how much I love this! I am a piano teacher and adult students are my favorite. I get so excited for them starting a new hobby and stepping out of their comfort zone. If you are looking for more music, I always use the adult Faber books – there’s a Classics and a Popular book that are both nice. Wishing you well with piano!

  21. Sue Harris says...

    Our daughter’s wedding. Postponed twice because of the pandemic. Honestly, just being able to see her and her almost-husband and hugging them and talking with them in person and not over Zoom would be so wonderful. We are all waiting for a few more weeks until Her fiancé is fully vaccinated, as the rest of us are already.

  22. Julie says...

    I too had a goal of taking up pottery a couple years back (overall visions and all). I ended up really struggling to get the hang of it and never completed one thing during my class! It was a total letdown but I want to give it another try. The class was a “beginners” class but majority of people were doing pottery for years and little instruction was given.

    Does anyone have recs for pottery studios in Manhattan (I live on the UWS) that really cater their classes to beginners? Would love some tips!

    • Diana K. says...

      I’ve heard good things about mud matters in hells kitchen.

    • Kate says...

      I also had a bad experience with my beginners pottery class – I think it comes down to having a good teacher and I hope to try another class in the future! I asked a ceramicist friend for her best tip and she said wedging the clay is the most important step! She said most people don’t have enough patience to take the time and really do it properly. We barely covered wedging in class – we kneaded the clay on the table a bit and that was it :| Pottery definitely looks easier than it is.

    • Julie says...

      I’m glad to hear I’m not alone, Kate! I still get made fun of by my family for never completing one thing. Whoever has visions of creating full dinnerware sets after a few classes, it was more of a collapsed bowl into an ashtray sort of experience for me :)

    • Grace says...

      The Manny Cantor Center used to have reasonably priced classes, and though I’d taken classes before, I recall their being a fair amount of instruction offered if you wanted it!

    • R says...

      I go to Supermud on the UWS (not sure if this is where you tried?!). I will say that it varies A TON teacher to teacher, I did make a bunch in my first classes, but when my teacher left and I switched to a new one I made progress at a really different rate. The biggest mistake I made in the beginning was not taking advantage of the open studio practice time. Realistically in a class you don’t have a ton of time by the time you get set up and then having to clean up afterwards, and for me the biggest shift was when I started coming in out of class time to practice, rather than the teaching itself. Less than 2 years later and I now sell my pottery on etsy.

    • M says...

      Julie, Cornerstone Pottery Studio in Hudson Heights (cornerstonepotterystudio.com) might be a good place to check out! Their current classes are all full, but maybe the next session? I got my start in pottery there when I lived in the city (three doors down from the studio…I was spoiled!) It’s super casual, but they have what you need to get going. I notice they only have mixed level classes now rather than beginner/advanced, but you should be able to get your questions answered by the instructor, no problem. Good luck!

    • C says...

      I’ve taken a few 6-7 week beginner courses at La Mano on 26th street and would recommend them! Honestly, it took me a few courses before things started to click, so don’t be discouraged :) I think it depends on the instructor as well as your learning style – I second the suggestion to go in and practice during studio hours if possible. I also watched youtube videos to see how other people taught fundamentals like centering, pulling up, and shaping. Even after you figure out the basics, it’s nice to see how other potters work (Florian Gadsby’s channel is a favorite of mine). And I’ve also picked up a few tips from watching The Great Pottery Throwdown hahah. Good luck!

  23. Emily says...

    This makes me so happy. Go you, Abby!

  24. Elizabeth says...

    We formerly lived in an area with high rises and more density, but now, in a more residential area, I’m actively trying to become part of the neighborhood – I want to make time to be a mom who drinks coffee on the front steps while the kids play with chalk, i want to be the parents who each have one hand on the stroller and one hand with a coffee, i want to have the kids who color at the table at the restaurant. We get croissants every weekend at nearby bakeries and always pause for a few moments of chat with the employees. We order from our neighborhood restaurants a fair bit, in hopes that we can both help them stay afloat and also to knit ourselves into the fabric of this neighborhood. I’ve never had time to work on it before, but I’ve been focused this year on really belonging to this neighborhood.

    • Caroline says...

      This is lovely.

  25. Anon says...

    Unfortunately, second chances at the present equal gambling.

    Vaccines do not provide immunity. They reduce the risk of serious disease or death.
    You can still get the virus and infect others.

    I’m dismayed by the ignorance of the masses that a vaccine is the end of the pandemic.
    It is not. Not by a long shot.

    In fact, a new “double mutant strain” is raging in India, killing teenagers and twenty somethings. Killing them.
    The current vaccines do not work on it.
    It has been found in CA this week!

    It’s not time for second chances right now.
    Please, please, read the real news and keep up-to-date with this invisible enemy that the entire world is at war with.

    • Lizzie says...

      Hi there! I understand your fear- this year has been very scary and I get wanting to keep safe, but I urge you to read more about the efficacy of vaccines against this virus. However we find our second chances, lets not judge one another, but focus on the positivity we all need right now. <3

    • Anon2 says...

      Hi, Anon. I feel you. Things are scary. But looking forward to things is an important part of being mentally strong and sound. I don’t think you should conclude that anyone describing their second chance here is being dangerous or irresponsible.

      Also, the variants are worrisome – even scary – , but I think your conclusions might be slightly off. I read today that a Stanford virologist predicts the vaccines may be “slightly less” effective on the double mutation from India. That would still be good enough to stop this thing if shots could be rolled out widely enough. No evidence one way or another yet. So, deep breaths.

      It’s so hard right now, but I hope you’re hanging in there.

      Xoxo.

    • G says...

      https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-56517495
      https://www.aljazeera.com/features/2021/4/5/should-we-be-worried-about-indias-double-mutant-covid-19-strain–&gt; the double variant is not the cause of the uptick in cases in India, nor is it a particular cause for concern in comparison with the UK variant, which vaccines are still quite effective against

      https://www.statnews.com/2021/03/29/real-world-study-by-cdc-shows-pfizer-and-moderna-vaccines-were-90-effective/ –> the best information we have shows that Moderna and Pfizer vaccines prevent all infection at very high percentages, and therefore, we can be fairly confident that vaccinated people will not spread covid

      Oh, Anon, I don’t want to be hard on you, because the world can feel like a really scary place. But we have to keep a solid perception of the amount of risk an action involves. Getting in a car or getting on public transportation is a gamble every time, but we do it because it makes our lives as we know them possible. We are at a place where we have every reason to be hopeful about the future (although I will say that this was a very US-centric post and things are much harder other places right now), and there’s so much danger in hopelessness and fear as well. Getting the vaccine will allow for greater freedom for all of us, and we should embrace that. We can only act on the information we have, and right now, the data points to new beginnings.

    • Liz says...

      I feel you. I have two babies who probably wont be vaccinated anytime soon and so we feel like we will still be in limbo for a while yet. And media keeps sending these mixed messages – the pandemic is almost over! But wait, cases are surging again! But don’t worry, you can start traveling again if you are vaccinated! Oh but only if it is essential! It is exhausting and has caused even more stark divides among my family about what is reasonable and safe behavior.

  26. Isa says...

    I had my first pregnancy and a miscarriage early this year. I hope I’ll be brave enough to try it again. It’s scary.

    • Katie says...

      Sending you so much love. I had this experience as well, and it is so hard, and takes away the joy and innocence of a pregnancy. Just wanted to reach out to say you’re not alone, and I’ll be holding you in my thoughts.

    • Nina says...

      Same here. It really is scary. I wish you courage and good luck.

    • D says...

      Sending you a gigantic hug, whatever you decide to open yourself up to. It is a vulnerable journey indeed. Something tells me you’re tremendously brave.

    • KB says...

      Sending you huge hugs. I am so sorry. I have been there and it is the roughest. When I was going through it I scoured the internet for success stories, so in case that is helpful to you I will briefly drop mine here. I went through 4 miscarriages before my first successful pregnancy, a zillion tests, eastern and western medicine, never found it why. I now have two beautiful children, conceived and carried with no intervention. You are absolutely right that the word is brave, and there is a whole community of similarly brave women out there to support you if you need it.

    • Laura says...

      Big hugs. It’s so hard to try again after miscarriage. Thinking of you.

    • Jen says...

      Sorry to hear of your tremendous loss. I had three miscarriages before having two children, and that season of life was so incredibly hard. My heart goes out to you and I hope you find the support you need and deserve right now. May you find ways to keep your heart open to love, in whatever form it comes.

  27. Laura says...

    I’d like another chance at dating. I had just got in the swing of things when Covid hit, post painful divorce. I tried last summer when outdoor dates per possible, but it still felt too anxiety inducing with a young child and grandparents to worry about. Hopeful the stakes will feel lower & I can remember how to have/be fun again.

    • D says...

      Cheering you on, Laura! You deserve to have/be fun, especially after the year we’ve all just had.

    • Rachel says...

      I am soon to be in a similar spot, Laura (divorce in process, small child and parents to consider). Rooting you on in solidarity! You are strong and brave and beautiful.

      <3

  28. Katie S. says...

    My partner of seven years and I broke up in February of this year – the day before Valentine’s Day. Because of things too many to name, we still live together. BUT, I am moving out TOMORROW! I have never lived alone before so this will be my first place all by myself at 28 years old. A second chance for love, home, and life, in my adorable new apartment. I can’t wait to see how things unfold.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      that is awesome, Katie!!!

    • Caroline says...

      Living alone is awesome. Leave the dishes in the sink, don’t close the bathroom door, eat whatever whenever, watch what you want however loudly you want. Just be you in a space that’s all your own! Go you!

    • Sadie says...

      I’m rooting for you, Katie! I hope you find a breath of fresh air in your new place.

    • Mara says...

      Hi Katie,

      I see you! My partner and I broke up after 12 years (!!!) in February and I’m living alone for the first time. I live in a bigger city in a little apartment and I want to say…IT’S WONDERFUL! I was so worried about being lonely, but it’s been really great. I’m 32 so a little older than you, but cheering you on! Turns out living by yourself is one milllllliiiion time better than being in a relationship that isn’t working. Brighter skies ahead!

    • HH says...

      Ditto to Mara’s comment, as a 41 year old single person living alone (with a cat). And cheers to you Laura and Rachel and Katie! I never lived alone until I moved into my (first) house two years ago. It has been a joy to work on the yard or paint walls or choose artwork (or light fixtures) and feel a sense of ownership over those things. Bits of my house, and especially the garden, have become an extension of who I am. Being comfortable doing things alone gives you the courage to never settle for a mediocre relationship. It gives you the courage to meet people without fear that the fear of being alone will drive you to get “stuck” in an unfulfilling relationship. I’m not saying I’m never lonely. But, more importantly than the momentary loneliness, is the knowledge that I won’t give up my lovely single space for anything less than a real, solid, satisfying commitment. That is empowering. Best of wishes to you!

    • Katie S. says...

      All of these comments made me cry! I feel so empowered by you all. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Women rock.

    • Amy says...

      Katie,

      I just broke up with my boyfriend of six years, almost on the exact same timeline as you. I’m not living alone, I’m back in my childhood bedroom, as a late twenty something, which is its own kind of terrible deja vu as lovely as it is to be with my parents. It feels like the last six years of my life didn’t happen. But I’m trying to be brave and curious and happy about the potential future. I can’t imagine wanting to ever date again (why did no one tell me heartbreak is this awful?? 10/10 do not recommend!) but I know I will. Life will move on. @Jo I’d love to talk to some other people who survived long term relationship breakups with people they had wrapped their whole selves around- maybe there can be a post on it!

    • Katalin says...

      Dear Katie, the same happened to me last summer. I was devastated and felt lost but since then the best things happened! I got my dream job and became the person I always wanted to be. I hope you’ll enjoy exploring life on your own!

    • Lauren says...

      Katie- When I was 28 (34 now…) I also broke up with my partner of 7 years in February 2015. It was an incredible Spring and Summer of many firsts, including the singular experiences of living and traveling alone. I joked that it was the “summer of Lauren”, and my mom actually had a mug with “Summer of Lauren” across the front to commemorate the time! To be clear, the break up was HARD, but that year I learned so much about who I was, what I enjoyed, and what I was looking for out of life with a clarity and joy that I had never had access to previously. I am excited for you. Best of luck, and ENJOY.

  29. liz says...

    My second chance is that I’m finally getting treatment for disordered eating. Being able to seek treatment over video chat rather than having to go in person lowered the bar enough for me to actually start treatment. It’s hard, but it is definitely giving me a new lease on life.

    • JJ says...

      Liz, that’s so great! Disordered eating is such a terrible disease; my life totally transformed after I sought treatment. I wish you all the best and congratulations on getting yourself to a place where you were able to seek help!

    • Sarah says...

      You go, Liz! A wide world awaits that I never imagined was possible for me when I reluctantly started treatment in 2006. This is amazing and you are so brave!

  30. annie says...

    i’m in my 9th year of working as a fashion copywriter, and i’ve been feeling unfulfilled, wrung out, and like i was wasting my creativity for the last few years. so… 2020 was the year i applied to library school. (my favorite dream is to be a youth services librarian!) covid made me realize that life isn’t going to wait for the timing to be right before i let myself do the things i’ve always wanted to. i’m 35—it’s high time for me to start respecting my own ideas and my own selfhood. and here i am, doing it.

    it feels damn good.

    • Courtney says...

      Hi Annie! Congratulations! I’ll be right by your side cheering you on as I start grad school. I kept telling myself during covid…if not now, when?

      I was a teacher for 10 years and realized I needed a change. I always had a dream of pursuing a graduate degree in psychology and now I will be starting in the fall. I cannot be more excited!
      My focus in school will be maternal mental health. I realized that supporting mothers is truly my goal in life, and Covid only reinforced it!

      I’m sure we will have our struggles in our new endeavors, but cheers to us for going for it!

    • Elise says...

      Thank you for sharing this. At 32, I’ve been feeling frustrated and burnt out with my career, but often tell myself that it’s too late to change, or that I won’t be successful if I start over in a new industry. Your comment is so encouraging! Good on you for going for it, and pursuing what’s important to you. It’s reinvigorated me to do the same :)

    • Kate says...

      I’m 31 and also leaving a career in public service to go back to school! Yay us! You’re never too old to make a change and there is so much life ahead.

      I just got accepted into a social work program and then after that maybe more school! I’ve realized I want to work in the service of others. That’s all I want out of life – to be humbly helpful. It’s so exciting to make this change!

    • Megan says...

      Annie! I went back to school and started a career as a school librarian this past year – right in the height of COVID – and it’s been such a rewarding, amazing experience. Best wishes as you get closer and closer to your dream!!!

    • Elle says...

      Congratulations!! After 20 years of copywriting I am now taking a psychotherapy course and hope to be qualified in two years. I’m 42 – and although going back to school has been daunting, it also feels amazing. Go you, go us!!!

    • annie says...

      all of these responses are so wonderful. thank you so much, all! how incredible to hear about others taking steps to do what feels right. big love and encouragement to EVERYONE hoping to make a change this year or any year in the future. it makes me feel good to know you’re all out there, taking one brave step at a time! <3

    • Tazza says...

      Hi Annie, congratulations! Would you mind sharing which program you applied to? Is a Master’s in library science the program that’s necessary? I’m in my 6th year as an English teacher, feeling burnt out, and I’ve also always loved the idea of being a librarian. Thanks so much for any details/guidance you or anyone else can provide!

    • Cristina says...

      Hi Tazza!

      Look for a nationally accredited MLIS program (Master’s in Library and Information Sciences). I’m currently taking online courses at The University of South Carolina.

      Begin thinking about what you’d like to specialize in…elementary, middle, high school, medical, law, prison…

      I’m specializing in Elementary and can’t wait to wear librarian vests similar to Ms. Frizzle!

    • Tazza says...

      Cristina,

      Thanks so much for taking the time to write that response, and for clarifying what I need to do!

      I’m excited for you to get to wear Ms. Frizzle librarian vests! What a perk. :)

    • Cristina says...

      You are very welcome, Tazza!

      As soon as I hit publish, my anxiety rolled in and I wanted to come back and explain even more! Bare with this future public school librarian…

      I’m specifically getting a nationally accredited degree in order to be able to move amongst states and not have to take tests to certify my degree. If you feel fairly certain you will remain where you are, look for a Master’s program at any college that offers them.

      This will GREATLY reduce the size of your tuition but that decision is completely up to us.

      Also, go ahead and join the ALA (American Library Association) and sign up to receive their emails. They include job offers, grant and scholarship opportunities and chances to interact with like-minded indivduals.

      And finally (if you’re still reading!), if you’re interested in teaching in a public school, some districts are offering to pay for your degree with some conditions. This may be the most motivating (and fastest!) route to achieve your dream.

      Kudos to us both for chasing our dreams…

    • Tazza says...

      Cristina,

      I don’t know if you’ll see this, but thanks for your second message! All of your info and encouragement really spurred me on, and I’ve just applied to San Jose State’s MLIS, which is 100% online. I honestly am torn between school librarianship and public librarianship, but I guess I have some time to figure it out!

      Thank you again, and take care!

  31. Susannah says...

    Last year in January I had decided to take up horseback riding again. I loved riding as a kid and it suddenly occurred to me that I could take lessons as an adult! Right as I was researching stables to try, everything was shut down.
    Now things are opening up again and I’m definitely signing up! The classes are outside in the fresh air, I’ve been vaccinated, there’s plenty of space between me and other people in the classes, so I feel pretty good about the level of safety!

  32. cat says...

    I love this!
    I had been trying to get sober for years. At the start of the pandemic I had 10 days sober, but the anxiety drove me back to drinking within another 10. Mid-way through this quarantine year I finally put it down for good–it is my second chance at life for sure :)

    • Rusty says...

      Cat, you can do hard things!
      Congratulations.
      Courageous and honouring yourself.

    • Laura says...

      Congratulations on this huge next step! What a difficult time to make this choice. I’m rooting for you!

    • AN says...

      Congratulations! Don’t know you but am proud of you!

    • D says...

      Hell yeah, Cat! I am beyond inspired by your grit and determination.

    • Sage says...

      One day at a time! Cheers from a fellow sober soul. :)

  33. Laura says...

    I was going to run the Paris marathon in April 2020 and celebrate my 40th birthday there with a big group of friends. I’m training again for the now rescheduled marathon, slated for October 2021, along with one friend who already lives in Europe. While I don’t know if it will actually happen, I found that it’s the act of hoping and planning (I bought a plane ticket!) that feels so great. Something about having something concrete to look forward to, rather than a vast expanse of time and a mountain of unknowns.

  34. Ileana says...

    My friend and I had a pottery class scheduled! Dream dashed. But you’re right, time to start thinking about it again.

  35. AJ says...

    Kim, I hope your LOVE your pottery class. I made the trek from South Brooklyn to Williamsburg multiple times a week for five years, even in the dead of winter, to lose myself in the magical pottery studio I was a member of. The warmth! The smell! The hum of the wheels! The endless inspiration! The clay dust you can never completely remove from under your fingernails! There’s really no more meditative a process, in my opinion. Hope we get to see some of your creations!

  36. Emily says...

    Kim- I’m so excited for you to start pottery! I started it 3 years ago and it has been such a fun hobby and true journey. Being a beginner is so important and wow did I find throwing on the wheel challenging at first. Still do actually. What I love about pottery is there are so many parts of it to explore- throwing, glazing, surface decorating, hand building, different types of clay, etc. Clay is such a wonderful medium to work in and has taught me so many lessons (patience, don’t hold onto things too hard- figuratively and literally, trust your gut, use your core, center within yourself). I just love it so much.

    And if you haven’t watched “The Great Pottery Throwdown” (now on HBO Max), I HIGHLY recommend it. Very inspiring!

    Have fun!

  37. MK says...

    You have to give us updates on how you like your pottery class! It’s one of those things I’ve always considered trying but never got around to. I would love to hear about how you like it!

    For me, the end(?) of COVID means honeymoon time! We delayed and finally scrubbed our planned wedding in April 2020 to elope in Colorado. It never felt like a compromise or second choice–it was way better for me to have just the two of us rather than 200 people we didn’t really know, and the choice to elope spurred a lot of healthy boundary-setting between me and my family. Anyways, the only piece we weren’t able to replace or modify was our planned honeymoon to Maui. It might take a bit longer than a pottery class to being COVID safe, but we are so excited to be able to take our dream trip!

  38. Mary W says...

    I’m going to start cartooning. I bought 2 Lynda Barry books and I’m going to work through them. She spoke at my workplace a couple of years ago and it was so inspiring.

    • annie says...

      lynda barry is AMAZING. i have one of her books (‘syllabus’) and it never ever fails to send me on the most rewarding, thought-provoking creative journeys. have FUN making cartoons!

  39. Jessica Camerata says...

    I’ve been wanting to take pottery classes too. We had them in high school as an elective. So much fun. I decided last month that I wanted to pick up tennis and found an instructor and a girlfriend to do it with. It’s been the best new thing for me personally and physically. A great workout, a new hobby and something that isn’t related to my blog/work. Can’t wait to see what you create in your pottery class!

    xo Jessica

  40. Tori says...

    I have been afraid of flying for as long as I can remember and it always held me back from traveling. I cannot wait to step on a plane and embrace the fears anew!

    • Loesie says...

      Hi Tori!

      Don’t know if you’re up for some unasked advice…
      I used to be soooooo scared of flying, up until my 34th.
      What helped for me was making sudoku puzzles while on the plane. The kind that were not too difficult and not too easy. Just perfect to keep my brain otherwise occupied with them to keep me from stressing out over the flight.
      Also, I have always been interested and fascinated by airplanes (just terrified of being in one!), and I have bought the app Flightradar24 for a couple of euros. It made me realize (visually, by seeing them in action) how many airplanes fly around the world all day every day, and how little stories you hear of things going wrong, percentage wise.
      Now, I can’t wait to go on a plane.
      Wishing you all the best and I hope you can have some wonderful fun adventures across the world in the near future ❤️

  41. Alison D says...

    Last summer, we were supposed to be on dream vacation to Yosemite for my mom’s 60th birthday. It was really exciting because it had been all planned the year before when my mom was in the hospital and we weren’t sure if she would make it to the next year. But, of course, we had to cancel the trip. The good news is my mom has remained completely healthy throughout the pandemic and in a few weeks we are doing a family trip to Joshua Tree with everyone being fully vaccinated. I can’t wait to see my family who all live on the other side of the country and be together in nature. It feels like a true second chance!

  42. Kate says...

    I feel very jaded to be honest. I’m happy you finally get to take up pottery, Kim! I would love to get on the wheel again, eventually.

    But hearing that the class opened up again had me immediately thinking, “And how long before it gets shut down again?” There have been a lot of ups and downs where I live, a lot of openings and closings due to measures being scaled back only to see the case numbers rise and everything is shut down again. What’s frustrating is that they bother allowing the province to re-open in the first place when we know what’s going to happen. I went to the thrift store but couldn’t try anything on, when I got home and then decided to return some items a few days later it was too late: stores had been closed due to stay at home orders. I made a haircut appointment but it was cancelled because salons had to close. It was rescheduled two months later. And then cancelled again two days before the appointment because we had another emergency order. I’d rather we just stay closed, for safety reasons and to avoid the whiplash, confusion and disappointment.

    • Sid says...

      Sounds like a fellow Ontarian :) I keep trying to find “covid-proof” things to plan and look forward to but it sure hasn’t been easy. Right now I’m mainly looking forward to everyone I love getting vaccinated. Fingers crossed it’ll happen by the end of this summer.

    • Larissa says...

      Totally agree Kate, I’m in Ontario and it’s just ridiculous!

    • Christine says...

      Also in Ontario (Toronto). Definitely not in the “second chance/pottery class” phase of the pandemic here. Hang in there, it’ll be our turn eventually.

  43. Amanda says...

    Love this post! Really love your outlook, Kim, and really love the fresh voice you bring in all of your writing.

    This year, I have my second chance to find a job I really love. I landed a role at the beginning of the year, and wasn’t happy with it, but felt it was the responsible choice to stay in my full-time role during a pandemic, and to be grateful I hadn’t been laid off. It’s almost been a year and half now, and I’m ready to find something that empowers me. The hunt has been going well so far!

  44. Anna Wagstaff says...

    Welcome to the world of pottery! You will love it, and yes, overalls are a must!

    I have started writing again this year–journeling, short stories, character developments. As I am writing I am always reminded of a quote from ‘You got mail,’ “I get lost in the language, words like ‘Thither, Mischance, Felicity.”

  45. Amanda says...

    Pre-pandemic I had a great group of about 8 close friends. Post-pandemic, I haven’t seen or talked to half of them in a year and 4 of them have moved away for new jobs and opportunities. I am emerging feeling friendless but am assuming others out there have gone through the same thing and am hoping to figure out how to make new friends as an adult!

    • Freya says...

      I’m totally in the same boat. I feel sad about it but lately have been thinking that there is excitement and new chances in it. Here’s to connecting and making new friends as an adult! Wishing you all the best :)

  46. Christina says...

    Watercolor! I’m 37 and I’ve spent my whole life wishing I was “artistic.” I finally got the courage during the pandemic to give it a go and it’s so rewarding. I find an artist who’s work I admire and I try to replicate their different styles to teach myself how to paint. Carolyn Gavin is currently providing colorful, joyful inspiration. It’s been a true test in my perfectionism and self-criticism but it’s taught me to have grace with myself as I learn something new. For all those wishful artists out there, give it a try, watercolor is very forgiving!

    • MPR says...

      A few years back I bought some watercolor paint and some pads. I thought I had lost them until recently when I was digging through some old boxes of stuff in my basement. I guess I’m going to be an artist this spring and summer!!!

    • Kate says...

      I’ve also taken up watercolour painting! I’m following a course on Domestika. But as soon as my paints arrived a good friend got possession of his new house so I made a housewarming card with a watercolour painting of the house on the front and he LOVED it! He framed it! With a little more experience under my belt I can now say it was an objectively terrible painting but like you said, it’s so forgiving that even bad watercolour paintings are still wonderful! I’ve now made two more personalized housewarming cards and it feels like such a simple yet special gift :)

    • Cait says...

      I love watercolor too! I’m not trained or even talented; I just like to do it for doing’s sake. I read Danny Gregory’s books after I had a very painful knee surgery. His books describe his journey to making art everyday after his wife’s debilitating injury and subsequent death. His Sketchbook Skool is excellent too. I like to make cards with a recipe inside and a watercolor of an item from the recipe on the front (ie, a painting of an eggplant and a recipe for ratatouille). My friends and family are delighted to receive even the wonkiest of watercolors. I think painting scratches a different part of my brain. Oh, the wonderful world of watercolor!!!

  47. Susan says...

    I’m a runner. I love running. I need running. And while I was able to run during the lockdown, my races were all cancelled and made virtual. Pass on running 26.2 miles in my neighborhood alone on a Wednesday but paying $178 for it and getting a shirt in the mail. Nope.
    Cannot wait for races to resume! Maybe I’ll run one in the fall. A full marathon next year FOR SURE. I’m itching for one.

  48. Christina says...

    Oh. Those of you who are vaccinated or soon-to-be, consider yourselves so lucky! Best case scenario, I might get my vaccination in September….. So, sadly, no second chances here.
    I can’t even try to pick up piano playing or learning to knit, since I have less free time and energy than ever. My children, who used to be semi-independent and go places by public transport now need to be driven everywhere…..

  49. Inga says...

    I haven’t seen my family in Europe for over two years, and my second chance is planning the trip that got canceled last Summer again! Just a couple of weeks ago, I thought I wouldn’t feel safe traveling in 2021 yet, especially with how bad covid rates are in Europe right now. But getting that first vaccine shot last week gave me such a burst of hope! I’ve been browsing flights and plotting the safest course with the fewest transfers in crowded airports since. Can’t wait to hug my parents and Grandma and see my best friend’s baby hopefully in just a few months!

  50. Anni says...

    Ohhh here in Europe this question still seems so far away. I don‘t dare to think these thoughts yet…

  51. Watch out for the slippery muddy slope that is pottery; it’s addicting! I took my first pottery class in university 20 years ago and I’ve been a full time potter ever since. ;)
    One of my hobbies at this time of year is definitely gardening. I love gardens and plants so much. We don’t have a very big yard but it’s enough to keep me occupied and happy on the weekends.

  52. Lynn says...

    I need a weekend away with my husband. Or without him, honestly. That’s all. Two nights. Two days. No kids. No near heart attacks as my toddlers run into things and put crap in their mouths that they shouldn’t. Maybe even a yoga class that isn’t in my 4 square feet of clean living room. Basically I’m looking forward to lower blood pressure.

  53. Kay says...

    Happy Ramadan/Ramadan Mubarak to those that are celebrating! My second chance this year is fasting for Ramadan after 2 years of not fasting. I had back to back pregnancies which prevented me from fasting. This year, I’m going all in with making memories and traditions with my babies and family. Growing up we didn’t have anything to commemorate Ramadan and I want that to be different for my kids. Today was the first day of Ramadan- it was tough but I’m looking forward to the opportunity to step back from the grind and focus on my spiritual, emotional, mental and physical well being.

    • LEE ANN says...

      Ramadan Mubarak to you, Kay!

    • Mado says...

      Ramadan Mubarak Kay!

    • Christina says...

      Ramadan Mubarak!
      I am not Muslim, but I feel the same about wanting to create traditions to make memories around holidays for my children. Wishing you a memorable Ramadan and the best Id afterwards!

  54. Darby says...

    My sister and I are hoping to vacation together this summer again! We love to rent a house on a lake for our two families and last year we couldn’t do it. We are still waiting for our vaccinations but fingers crossed they will happen in time. Spending that week together is just so special and something we look forward to every year<3

  55. A says...

    I’ve wanted to take an in person pasta making class (or even a course) for as long as I can remember. I considered getting a pasta machine when we went into lockdown, but I was teaching remotely and it ended up consuming even more of my time and apartment than before the pandemic. I also didn’t have the attention span to focus on that one thing and learning it on my own or virtually.

    For the first few weeks of stay-at-home/quarantine in NYC, it was really difficult to get basic groceries (onions, rice, bread, yogurt, etc) and some of the newer alternatives hadn’t popped up yet. I did one major Trader Joe’s haul a week prior to lockdown, and I stretched those groceries for almost 6 weeks.

    It ended up being a fun challenge to use up every last scrap of food and figure out new or different recipes. I started doing FaceTime tutorials with my mom to learn some of my favorite Indian foods. I watched endless YouTube videos and between Chetna Makan, Maangchi, Priya Krishnan, and @Cosetteskitchen on IG, I can clean out my fridge every single time. Hubs and I have had more variations of pakoras, Korean pancakes, and veggie broth than we knew existed. The FaceTime tutorials with mom and the habit of using up all of my groceries before buying new ones have both stuck around.

    We also have a new baby and I took time off from work, so I am determined to find that in person pasta class as soon as it can be safely done and have some me time!

  56. Daniela says...

    We are one and the same Kim! I look at pottery and dream of making something myself. I did it in middle school and uh.. it wasn’t impressive. But maybe my second chance will be. Or maybe it won’t. Either way, I’d love a pottery class too!

    My husband and I are also excited to start rock climbing (indoors first). We are going on Monday!!

  57. Carol Hinz says...

    Just as it felt as if life might be slowly returning to normal, in late March I was diagnosed with breast cancer. It’s stage I and my prognosis is good, but I need 12 weeks of chemotherapy (my 2nd infusion is tomorrow) as well as surgery this summer.

    So my new focus is on cultivating gratitude. I’m grateful that healthcare workers and my parents have been vaccinated and that frequent visit to medical facilities are far safer than they would have been a year ago. I’m grateful my 10-year-old is back in school 5 days a week and has the support of peers and teachers in a way that simply wasn’t possible with distance learning. I’m grateful for all the love and support from family, friends, and the children’s book community, which I’m so lucky to be a part of. And I’m grateful that as a low-risk 42-year old, I had a sudden feeling that something was amiss back in February, which prompted me to find that small lump.

    • Jess says...

      Thinking of you Carol and love your attitude. So glad you got checked out when you did, and are on the road to recovery.

  58. Beth says...

    We’ve just enrolled our 4 year old in Learn to Skate classes starting in May and he’s nervous about going so I signed up to take classes at the same time on the same sheet of ice. I’m excited to learn with him and hopefully share our small victories (and probably many falls) over coffee & ice cream after class.
    I haven’t tried a new hobby in years for fear of failing (I’m a perfectionist) so this feels like a personal challenge and a chance to show my son that if you practice and work hard, you can achieve almost anything. And, of course, when you fall, get back up, laugh, and try again.

  59. Heather says...

    In Ontario we just entered another month long lockdown so things are feeling pretty scary and kind of hopeless right now. I’m so happy that some of you can start thinking about normal life again and making plans for the future but for a lot of us that still seems so far away and almost impossible. I guess I’ll just have to live vicariously through all of you for now and have hope that things will get better.

    • Aoife says...

      Dear Heather,
      Please know that you are seen and understood in this. Things feel desperately lonely and impossible right now — the poostorm and hell zone of these months is so, so heavy. I just want you to know that I see you and am sending the very best to you (have just come out of our third three-month lockdown and haven’t spent time with family in over 12 months so the mutual hopelessness is real).
      Staying resilient, keeping the course and summoning up tiny bits of optimism with the faith they’ll coalesce to some proper hope is so tremendously hard and the exhaustion is real. A lyric from Frightened Rabbit that’s got me through this year and other wretched times is, “It’s not the end, it’s an uncomfortable pause”. It seems to sum up all this: we’re all waiting, digging deep again and again, and hanging on with the barest bits of our fingernails. You can do this and you have support here, ok?
      Sending friendship from Ireland to you xx
      -Aoife

    • Heather says...

      Dear Aoife, not sure if you’ll see this but thank you so much for your lovely and thoughtful comment. I hope you’re hanging in there and I hope you get to see your family again soon. Sending love and positive vibes to you from Canada!

    • Mandy says...

      Dear Aoife, also here in Ontario and just wanted to say what a thoughtful and kind comment. Your words are working their magic for many of us :) thank you.

    • I’m in Quebec, so I’m not thinking about normal life yet either. I’m just focusing on the present and how to find little things to enjoy now at home.

  60. ang says...

    Ive finally ((FINALLY!)) dusted off my old keyboard and mlved it in front of a window downstairs so I can start to learn how to play it again. I took a class in college and it’s importnat for me as a mom to be able to have music in the house and to model practice habits.

    I have relearned 2 major scales, a simple version of Pachelbel’s Canon in D, and I’m working on an arrangement of Concerning Hobbits from a youtube tutorial. All I need is a recital venue. Adult beginners are the bravest people. Who cares if we look foolish?

    My ultimate goal is to book a background gig at a supermarket or something during the holidays..

    • Juliette says...

      This is so inspiring! I bought a little keyboard in lockdown and was doing quite well with my practicing and impressing myself with my little ditties! I’ve fallen completely off the wagon but this is such a good incentive to start again. I love your phrase that adult beginners are the bravest people – I feel so far from being able to play something that sounds good to other people, but we all have to start somewhere. Thank you for giving me the opportunity and inspiration to get back to the keys.

    • I love this. I have been walking my piano for the whole duration of the pandemic, ignoring the beginner sheet music. Time to act!

  61. I put alone-time on hold. Because of my health, we were in lockdown for a full year, and we are only emerging now that I am vaccinated. With my whole family at home, I suddenly had no alone time and had less free time since I was now in charge of homeschooling. Now, when I drop my kid off at school, I go straight to the park and skate, skate, skate for as long as I want. I know some people like to turn on their blue tooth speakers and skate, but I want complete silence. I feel so grateful for silence. Moving my own body for my own reasons and thinking my own thoughts… it is everything I’ve missed.

  62. Christina says...

    My hobby is eating dessert every night :) We had twins in October and getting them both down at the end of the day feels like a MAJOR ACCOMPLISHMENT (seeing as it didn’t happen at all for the last two weeks …). Whoever knew two Tollhouse cookie dough balls rolled into one could be such a luxury!

    In my mind I will eventually have some time to myself and would love to do pottery! Or needlepoint! Or anything that is just something for myself. But for now I’m content to be the holder of my two little chubbies.

    • Anna Si says...

      Hang in there! My twins are three now and I totally feel like I can live my life as I want again. It will all be over so soon!

    • Marie says...

      We had our little chubby in April of 2020 (he’ll be a year soon! crazy). Getting one little nugget down at night is an accomplishment but two… you enjoy those Tollhouse cookie dough balls. That is a major accomplishment. Everyday is a major accomplishment.

      I wish you many restful nights in your future and a pottery class or two (one day) <3

    • Sarah says...

      Haha Christina I had a singleton in October and I also reward myself after her bedtime with dessert and/or a glass or two of wine. I have a recipe that makes 2 large chocolate chip cookies and I’m also a big fan of the Skinny Cow chocolate pretzel salted caramel ice cream bars. Kudos to you for getting two babies down, you definitely deserve a treat after that!

      I bought an embroidery kit on Etsy last year and a paper flower kit even earlier than that, but haven’t gotten started on either one yet. I just am so exhausted most of the time! I’m still nursing twice during the night but maybe when I get more than 4 hours of sleep in a row I will have the energy to do something creative. Right now my free time is spent keeping my house clean-ish.

  63. Oh my gosh, Kim, I’m so excited for your pottery class. I’m looking forward to starting it up again. I took one right before the pandemic, I wrote about it for CoJ actually, and it was the best part of my week. The process of molding the clay is so calming, and feels like a completely different part of your brain is at work. I was also fortunate enough to be in a super supportive class—a fellow potter went so far as to build a hand crank for me so that I could use the wheel. I’m hoping that you have the same experience! (Did I ask if we could listen to “Unchained Melody” at one point? Yep. Did my teacher say it was ok? You bet.)

    PS. Have you seen “The Great Pottery Throw Down?” It’ll make you even more excited about the class!

    • Lindsey says...

      Yes! Working in Clay is so wonderful and life changing! I hope you love it Kim!

  64. cc says...

    I’ve been watching the Great Pottery Throwdown on HBOMax and it is my current MVP. Hope you’ll show us some of your creations.

    As to second chances, I was planning a trip to Cornwall when the pandemic hit, so I hope I get a chance to go at some point.

  65. Karen says...

    I’m planning on saying “yes” to social activities. I’ve been hit with the “only have one life” mindset after this last year. Let’s live it up! Enjoy your pottery class, Kim!

  66. Vicki says...

    My 40th birthday trip with my best college friends! 2020 put the kibash on our plans, but WE WILL go on a trip together sometime soon! None of us is officially 40 until we’ve celebrated together

  67. Julee says...

    Seeing my parents! Meeting my nephew and niece! Holding my brothers and parents in my arms
    (We’ve been separated on the East and West coasts).

  68. CS says...

    Oh, what a great question. I’m looking forward to playing doubles tennis, sitting in a coffee shop with friends and visiting my daughter who is 2000 miles away at college!

  69. Caitlin says...

    We moved to a new city the week before the world shut down, so honestly the whole city feels like a second chance! I am so excited to find a yoga studio, running group, and make some more in-depth connections.

  70. Abby says...

    I’m fully vaccinated and I’m coming out of this a new person for sure. The “noise” in my pre-pandemic life is gone. I’ve let go of grudges. I’ve forgiven family. I feel stronger and braver and more sure of myself than I have ever felt. I am thankful for what the pandemic pause has taught me. I feel like a butterfly!!!

  71. Sam says...

    I think I’m most looking forward to having other things to talk and think about.

    • Sarah says...

      THIS!!! OMG.

    • Jess says...

      YES!

  72. jenn says...

    During the Spring of the pandemic I started weeding a patch on the side of house. I wanted find something to do and I always wanted to garden and never had the time. I planted zinnias and zinnias because they were easy and result was so amazing and unexpected. It became a source of joy for me to walk outside and see the butterflies and hummingbirds. My neighbors called it the Secret Garden. I am looking forward to try to recreate it again

  73. Midge says...

    Travel with my family. I can’t wait for a roadtrip, listening to “Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me” in the car with my husband and two teenagers, spooning up Wendy’s Frostees and seeing new things.

    A few months ago Rachel Cargle put up an Insta photo of a glam living room and asked what should happen there. Somebody wrote something like: “a women-only brunch with mimosas, good coffee, crossword puzzles, and jazz playing in the background.” I am so having that party with my girlfriends.

    • Kate says...

      What a dream :)

    • Bonnie says...

      Where does one go to meet women who would want to hang out and do crossword puzzles and listen to jazz?

    • Abigail says...

      Listening to “Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me” really is a special kind of weekend joy. It feels so spacious.

  74. Celeste says...

    I can see you in those overalls! Enjoy! Mine is buying a (basic) boat with Hubs (didn’t know if we’d lose our jobs) and hopefully concerts in the last quarter. (Ugh they don’t give you your $ back.)

  75. I started “travel hacking” at the beginning of 2020 and was so pumped for all the trips we would take on points. We were able to do a few local stays, but now I’ve got my eye on Puerto Rico over Thanksgiving, if possible!

  76. Hannah says...

    Loved this!
    I feel like the things I’m looking forward to post-pandemic are maybe not the same things I would have looked forward to pre-pandemic. My husband and I are both introverted homebodies enough as it is, but being so isolated in 2020 has made me crave nights out and get-togethers. Pre-2020, these would have stressed me out and I’d much rather enjoy a night in with a glass of wine and my jammies. But now, guess who knows all of the neighbors and their babies and their dogs and is the self-proclaimed block party planner… An outdoor Mario Kart competition and Married at First Sight finale viewing are already in the works! Who would have thought I’d be this person?!? Nevertheless, I like her. ;)

    • Julee says...

      Yup. Me too. I’m nodding along over here about the introvert yet sudden “know everybody” urge.
      I like this side of you too, have fun!

  77. I love this so much! I have an obsession with buying ceramics — I should definitely take a class of my own!

    My second chance is being more open to hosting people. My house is very small (like 800 sq ft, not a trendy tiny house, haha) and I used to be embarrassed to have people over. Now I just want to see everyone I love, even if we are sitting on the floor eating takeout pizza!

    • Deb says...

      Hi Lexie,

      Me house is 500 square feet so I feel you but we must be brave! People love us not our square footage <3

    • Annie says...

      You can absolutely do it! Our apartment is 700sf, yet every family gathering is held here, rather than the four bedroom houses with yards. It’s how you make it feel rather than how how big it is.

      (can I make a “that’s what she said” joke here? This has been our pandemic hobby, bad jokes, puns, etc)

    • Kate says...

      The best parties are small, intimate affairs with dim lighting where everyone ends up sitting on the floor! I saw an apartment tour on CoJ recently with a gorgeous Brazilian woman who said her secret party trick is to sit on the floor, it immediately makes everyone more comfortable.

      My previous roommate and I were known for our gatherings, people always commented on the vibe. Our secret was warm lighting, simple snacks and a good playlist – people always ended up sitting on the floor of our tiny kitchen! And we’re not college students, these were mid-30s+ professionals a dinner party. A little bit of care and attention to detail, plus great company, creates a great ambiance! Oh I miss hosting people :(

  78. Mary says...

    This is such a great uplifting question, Kim! I’m excited to fly back to Vancouver to see family, friends and ocean views!!!!

  79. Jaime says...

    I would like to host more people in our home! I love being hospitable and hosting friends in our home – from casual drinks/desserts with 1-2 people to parties with 10+ friends. That hasn’t happened in over a year. I’m hoping that once my husband, myself, and our friends are fully vaccinated, we’ll be able to have people in our home more often.

  80. Elizabeth says...

    Last Friday night was my first class to learn to play ice hockey!

    • Erin G. says...

      ELIZABETH! You go girl!

  81. Visiting family and friends in Virginia. I got an 8-week paid internship so I get to go back for most of the summer! I’m also excited to (possibly) sing in an in-person choir again.

  82. B says...

    Going to use our non-refundable wedding floral deposit (from the wedding that was downscaled last year from 80–>18) for a baby shower this year instead…🎉

    Side note, is everyone pregnant right now? I feel like there’s a serious baby boom going on all of a sudden with so many friends and co-workers due August – October. Maybe in January everyone saw the end in sight and got busy?

    • K :) says...

      I was supposed to graduate last May with my MA, and when I was suddenly home with our four kids and husband in our tiny nyc apartment I just couldn’t get my last paper done. I felt so dejected and like I couldn’t keep my shit together for anything except my kids. After extensions, scrapping many many pages to completely start over, and the most supportive professors ever, I turned in the final draft of my very last paper on Friday! I wasn’t always sure I could do it, but here I am—with my sweet family and friends cheering me on all year. This May, I’ll be celebrating my second chance as I officially graduate with my MA!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      That’s amazing, K!!!!!!!

  83. Michelle says...

    I was literally just telling my husband that this is the first time I’ve allowed myself to look forward to anything in a year. I am 10 days away from being fully vaccinated. Going to Ohio to see my parents and nieces for the first time in 2 years, signing my girls up for piano lessons this summer, eating dinner with my best friend!! I am so ready.

  84. Hilary says...

    We are going to host an “Everything Party” to celebrate everything we missed during the pandemic. Big wedding canceled? Put on that wedding dress, get a bakery cake and come over! Bummed about missing Halloween? Wear your costume and pass out candy! Do you love Christmas? Don your ugly sweater and make your grandma’s stuffing!

    I imagine this will be the weirdest, lovingest, happiest party (and probably the weirdest ever potluck to match?!) and I CANNOT WAIT FOR IT.

    • Nicole says...

      This is the best!

    • Meg says...

      This is so lovely.

    • Kim says...

      This is the best idea!!!
      Happy everything!

    • Jess says...

      This is THE MOST fun idea! Brilliant!

    • MJ says...

      This is one of the best ideas ever and I plan to steal it.

    • Julie says...

      Oh, I love this! Have an amazing time!!!!

    • Laurie says...

      This made me teary. What a wonderful idea!

  85. C says...

    Kim: Do I have the show for you: The Great Pottery Throw Down is a wild delight!!! You can stream all for seasons on HBO Max. It’s creative, kind, generous, collaborative people throwing pots and makes your heart feel better just watching it.

  86. alison says...

    My husband (we got micro-married during Covid) and I bought a house last June. We haven’t had anyone inside except our ultra-immediate families and like, 2 contractors (LOL). We can’t wait to have friends over for even the simplest of dinner parties.

  87. Joanna Hillier says...

    I’m from Canada and given the slower vaccine roll-out (we’re waiting for shipments from the US), second chances still feel very much out of reach. I’ve been in full lockdown since November and it doesn’t seem to be ending anytime soon. Hoping I can see my parents safely this summer before my husband and I move out of province but I think any other second chances will have to wait until 2022.

    • Catherine says...

      I feel the exact same! Like it will never end, like we’ll never get vaccinated. 3rd wave fille on!

    • Lizzie says...

      I agree, I’m in the US but we are seeing more and more cases, I’m looking down the barrel of cancelling our postponed 2020 wedding again (2 of my bridesmaids are Canadian and I’m not going to have a wedding if the border is still closed)

      As tempting as it is to feel like things will be normal this year I don’t think they will be. Maybe more normal, but sweaty dance parties should wait for now

    • Mado says...

      Yes. I’m also in another country, and it seems that it will be at least six months if not 2022 before normal things are safe again.

    • Robin says...

      Same. Schools just closed indefinitely and cases are higher than they’ve ever been where I live. I’m so grateful that some of the people I love are starting to get their first shots, any kind of class much less a sweaty dance party feels a long way off :(

    • Kate says...

      Yeah, speaking of second chances – I had my haircut rescheduled twice due to the stay at home orders here and subsequent reopening and re-closing. Finally chopped it myself! Looking forward to a professional haircut is the most I can muster right now, anything else seems too far off.

    • S says...

      Same, in Europe, and everything still feels out of reach. I am happy for the US, but honestly it is pretty hard to see the relief and celebration, when the rest of the world is still very much mid-pandemic.

    • Tesia says...

      Reading Kim’s post almost made me cry. I live in Germany and the vaccination situation here is an absolute disaster. Instead of looking forward to things opening up, I’m mentally preparing myself for the next hard lockdown. 2022 is the year that I’m planning for.

    • Maaike says...

      Same. This post is making me a little depressed tbh. Normal still seems so very very far away here.

    • Christina says...

      Catherine, Mado, Tesia, Maaike….yes. Fellow European here.

  88. Anna says...

    I am obviously incredibly excited to see family and friends, but strangely, the thing I am longing for the most is to go on mundane outings and not have it feel like a high-stakes tactical operation.
    I want to go to the grocery store and look at all the produce, take the time to see what looks fresh and good, chat to the cashier, buy some tulips . . . I don’t really know why, but I’m just LONGING for this. Right now, for all errands, it’s get-in, get-out as quickly as possible.

    • Karin says...

      Yes! Aside from a girlfriend get-together, I’m most longing to go to a store and just SLOWLY BROWSE!

    • Abbey says...

      YES! I have introverted tendencies and this year made me realize that just being OUT in the world, browsing, smiling at strangers, is a really comfortable way I used to socialize. I didn’t even know this about myself before! But now it seems so important to quietly and privately feel like a part of a community, even just taking my sweet ass time in the grocery store.
      (“SLOWLY BROWSE” had me rolling)

    • Yes to this! And to getting take-out coffee and drinking it while I grocery shop. This was always my ritual and I miss it. I guess it’s still quite a long way away, but I look forward to it….

    • Toni says...

      Anna! Yes! This!! I want to go to the grocery store so badly. I miss buying the cheese that’s on sale just to try it because it’s calling to me. I miss squeezing a melon to see if it’s ripe. I miss the smell of the fresh florals that call to me to pick out a fun just because bouquet for my kitchen. I miss smiling at the cashier and saying thank you and have a great day (and actually thinking the day could be a great one for no reason at all).

    • annie says...

      ‘high-stakes tactical operation’ is JUST the way to describe it. i am sooo with you, anna + karin! being able to relax, breathe easy, and take our time again, whether in stores or in the library or wherever, is going to be WONDERFUL.

  89. Tess says...

    Doing research for the book I’m trying to write on a largely unknown female artist. This summer I’ll be able to finally travel to DC to do research at the Smithsonian!

    • Kate says...

      As an art historian and museum curator, this sounds amazing! Good luck!

  90. Rue says...

    For me, 2020 was more like a chrysalis than a set of missed opportunities. I slowed down in many ways, but I picked up a new-to-me pandemic-safe hobby (fly fishing! not as boring as it sounds like it would be!) while most of my stuff was on hold. All I did last summer was fish, have work calls from my living room, and endlessly walk the dog. But that cocoon was establishing so much! I have approached my work in really different ways, especially since January when I got a clean bill of health after years of chronic illness, and the pandemic slowdown absolutely helped me regain my health. We got engaged in quarantine and we’re planning what we hope to be a more or less “normal” fall wedding. And we are currently in the process of buying a house!

    Everything that’s newly unfolding feels SO big right now: a house, a marriage, big work projects that I’m finally seeing progress on after years of hoping/wishing/trying. I am ready for the “return” of in-person social support and down time beyond my couch when I so choose. I’m fully vaccinated and the ability to go to a gym again has been the biggest blessing amid all these good-stressful-but-very-stressful life events. But with so many big shifts underway, it feels like a big unfolding or turning, not like a loop back to where I was. And frankly, where I was at the beginning of the pandemic is not where I want or need to be anymore! Thank goodness!

    • Agnes says...

      This is so wonderful.. so happy for you Rue!!

  91. L says...

    Oooo pottery class sounds great Kim! Out of the house, tactile, new people, new skill…and I recently went down a bit of a rabbit hole into all the beautiful (and some not-so-beautiful ha) pottery on Etsy so I’m feeling this idea. I may have to copy you :). I think like a lot of people the second chances I’m looking forward to are the trips that didn’t happen. One was even from 2019 when my husband and I had an epic trip planned for the summer that we got about two days into before we had to come right home because my father-in-law died. It was all kind of a surreal haze of epic sadness but I’m still kind of haunted by some of the places we planned for and dreamed about and then never got to – all those Airbnbs lovingly researched and new nooks of the world I was so stoked to see. No plans as of now to try and recreate that trip but we’ll see.

  92. Aoife says...

    In terms of suspended dreams and plans, it’s travelling more than anything. We moved to Ireland at the very start of 2020 and have only been able to do some short day trips in our county. We’re longing to make it to Italy for our five-year wedding anniversary (fingers and toes crossed for safe travel in August!).
    Otherwise, hoping to finally make friends here as things have just started to open up a little after our third three-month lockdown. The government is working to make it the last time we close down as a country and restricted to not travelling more than 5km from home.
    Lastly, my only goal for this year is to be strong enough to run again. I spent most of the last three years weathering ankle injuries, endometriosis and then chronic pain from so much sitting during the pandemic. I yearn to be strong enough and well enough to sustain a 5km run at sunset by the river as the birds chirp, the smell of earth on the breeze and I hit that point where the endorphins kick in as I loop back home. Hoping my body will hang in there as I work to rehab things while starting to treat it with the tenderness and care I haven’t for the past 32 years. It’s a steep learning curve!

    After 12 months of disappointment, despair and grief, these delicate hopes are helping with stamina for the last leg to the finish line. Sending everyone energy to keep swimming for just a little bit longer xx

    • Michelle Kilkenny says...

      Aoife,

      I totally understand and empathize about weathering the last three years with health stuff. I broke my ankle (the same one) TWICE in 2019. While I can’t run again, I have rehabbed it significantly during the Shelter-In-Place. I live in SF and we stayed closed for almost all of 2020. Like really closed.

      Now, I’m back to hiking 10+ miles once a week and really enjoying the endorphins. You’ll get there…just slowly, at first.

      Michelle K.

    • Aoife says...

      Aw, Michelle!! Thank you so much for your kind and thoughtful words. It means a lot to me, truly.
      Congratulations on your rehabbing — please know how thrilled I am for you being able to hike!
      Sending you all the best and hoping you can keep healing and enjoying the endorphins,
      Aoife xx

  93. Ashley says...

    I signed myself up for horseback riding lessons! It was a little daunting because I’m 30 and didn’t know if I would look silly riding with a bunch of kids, but honestly, I love horses and I just don’t care. Very excited!

    • Ashley says...

      I started piano at 38! I’m her only adult student and it’s wonderful. It’s too easy to put off things-especially new things-because it seems the time has passed, but I think we all have a new appreciation for using the time we have in a way that brings us joy. I hope horse riding lessons are even more fun than you hope and you make new friends, even if they’re 10. :)

    • Clare says...

      Ashley! This is also on my to-do list. I really think I could’ve been a horse girl back in the 90s. I hope you have the best time.

  94. Sadie says...

    Here comes another summer with the opportunity to landscape my yard. Obviously covid wasn’t what prevented me from doing it last year. I’m the problem!

    • Lara Cobra says...

      hahaha we won’t tell if you don’t ;)

    • Caitlin says...

      Sadie, this is me!!

  95. Bryn says...

    I’m pregnant with my first child and due in Late August (insert lots of happy face emojis). Until she arrives, my husband and I will be eating out and going to the movies as often as possible (we will be fully vaccinated one week from today, thank you scientists and researchers!). We will also be spending lots of time with friends and their babies we have not been able to meet because of the pandemic. I can’t wait to hug people. I haven’t hugged anyone other than my husband in over a year!

  96. Charlotte says...

    I’m in the US and put grad school in the UK on hold for obvious reasons. Although now I’m left teetering back and forth on whether or not I should accept my offer that I deferred to this fall. Part of me thinks things will be better by then but the other side of me is afraid to extend myself financially if there’s a possibility it won’t be. I hate the fear and cynicism I’ve developed over the last year. Is anyone else here in a similar position?

    • Erin says...

      I moved from the US to the UK for grad school in August of 2020. It’s been challenging (we’ve been in semi-lockdown since just before xmas) but so good at the same time. Obviously this is just speaking from my personal experience in a small UK town, but even spending a lockdown in a different country has been so interesting! I haven’t gotten to do any of the weekend trips I had hoped or experience the university culture, which has been devastating. HOWEVER, the vastly slower pace that covid forced us into here has allowed me to get to know the town and to explore places on foot that I never would have in a normal year. I would encourage you to take the opportunity – it may not end up being the UK grad school experience you hoped for, but it will still be an opportunity for growth and exploration! All the best, whatever you decide <3

    • D says...

      Not in the same position but I did start a program in Europe August 2020. Dream program, so lucky, etc. Honestly it has been so, so hard to learn new things year – I have struggled in ways that are out of character and really tough (like feeling massive, massive brain fog, not really being able to learn new material, not being able to produce anything close to my normal level of academic writing). I think you made a VERY smart decision to postpone and wish it had even entered my mind that I COULD do that.

  97. Loesie says...

    * Hugging my girlfriends.
    * Kissing my parents when it’s their birthday.
    * Flirting with other guys just because.
    * Getting really, really drunk at a bar (haven’t done this in years, but boy do I long for it now).
    Maybe shouldn’t combine numbers 3 and 4…
    * Eating dinner outside at a restaurant on a warm summer’s night when it’s just chilly enough that you need to put on a cardigan.
    * Travel to see people I love and miss dearly.

  98. Cassie says...

    parties and dates!!!

  99. anna says...

    Spending time with my BF & making every second count-he may deploy next year so rather than focusing on how terrified and sad that makes me I’m viewing our time as intentional and precious. We met on Hinge & the convo stalled for months before we met in real life (he seemed too good to be true!) so I see every day with him as a second chance for all that lost time I stupidly waited.

  100. Em says...

    A big emphasis for me in the coming year will be making new friends! 5 years ago I moved to a new city, and I made two close friends that I’m thrilled to still hold dear (both who I met regularly for walks, picnics, porch hangs during the pandemic). I had also made a slew of acquaintance/distant-friends, but it seems like most of those will have dried-up post-pandemic. I’m ready to really focus on broadening my friend group, meeting new people, putting in the effort to find more amazing ladies to add my life. I value friendships so much and this has never been more true than during the past year when I felt its absence.

    • Rachel says...

      I fully agree with this! I’m also struggling to figure out how to make new friends. So many of mine moved out of the city I live in during the pandemic. I assume most folks who stayed have the same issue and that people will be open to making new friends, but who knows? I welcome all “here’s a way to make friends as an adult” ideas!

    • Lara Cobra says...

      Em, where do you live? – I’ve heard so many stories of friendships starting right here in this comment section

    • Annie says...

      I’m in a similar boat and absolutely dying to make more friends other than my few close pals in my city (Chicago). I never realized how much energy I got from those acquaintance-type relationships.

      And to bounce off Lara’s reply – I feel like COJ would be such a great way to connect with new people since you already know you share interests. Idk if this is something Jo and Co would facilitate in a post but consider me down.

    • Em says...

      Lara – I’m in Seattle! What about you?

    • Kate says...

      I made new friends a couple years ago by joining a frisbee rec league (mixed). I had never played frisbee before and I was terrible at first! But I’ve made such wonderful friends with my teammates. We go on camping trips, ski trips, have a book club, a pub quiz team, they helped me move after a break up (we’ve all helped each other move) not to mention we meet up for swimming, board games, sailing, tossing the disc and of course Zoom brunches. Man, a real group of friends is all I’ve ever wanted and so grateful to finally have it!

      I highly recommend joining a casual sports team, when the world allows. I can’t think of a better, faster way to make friends as an adult!

    • Molly says...

      Agree and I’m in Seattle, would love to connect!

    • Rachel says...

      Love the idea of making friends right here in the comments! I’m in San Francisco.

  101. Caroline says...

    I am so looking forward to introducing my baby to family and friends!

  102. Jill says...

    I love this, Kim. My second chance for this year is to really appreciate London and everything the UK has to offer. I’m living here as an expat and I think was starting to get a bit blase about all of the incredible cultural wonders at my feet. I’m never taking them for granted again! This is probably my last year living in London need to make the most of every last minute! (Well, as soon as it opens up again….)

  103. x says...

    My relationship. It was hard before, being very long distance (she US, me, Europe) but we could come and go almost as we pleased (it didn’t seem like that at the time, because money and jobs of course, but we didn’t realize the level of freedom we had).
    During the pandemic we were lucky enough to be able to spend 5 months together for the first time but we ruined it all and separated, and we were not able to see e. o. again: travelling just to clarify things was impossible at that point. Now we’re not even speaking. I feel an incredible sense of failure and I do hope we will give each other a second chance.

    • mb says...

      That is so hard–take care of your heart! I’ll be thinking of you and sending you positive vibes!

    • Abbey says...

      I feel for you, X. I’ve had a LDR distanced by continents during this pandemic too and I don’t even know what to make of it anymore, even though we’re still “together.” It’s so, so weird. I hope the failure you feel is not *yours*, you know? Circumstances are what they are. Be kind and gentle with yourself.

  104. Caroline says...

    I am so looking forward to introducing my baby boy to family and friends!

  105. Sarah says...

    Sigh…As a reader not in the US, but in Canada where vaccination rates are much lower, second chances still seem so far out of reach. I’m writing this from our third stay-at-home order, where I’ve been working from home for over a year.
    It makes me so happy and hopeful though to see friends in other countries start to venture out again. My partner and I are supposed to get married in a tiny ceremony this summer…fingers crossed that we can still make it happen.

    • Julie says...

      Sigh here too, haha! I’m also Canadian (from Quebec) and pretty fed up with our 8pm curfew (though they have it worse in France and other countries). I hope your wedding happens the you want it too!

  106. Rachel says...

    I was lucky enough to take two pottery classes before stay at home orders were implemented. The first little vase I threw is still sitting in an art studio drying on the shelves, and I’ve had a few moments where I felt lonely thinking about it sitting there all through COVID, never making it to the kiln.

    When all this is over, I want to be a little sillier, a little wigglier, so I’m thinking some sort of funky dance class is my next step.

  107. Britt says...

    To get back to traveling, even for short trips. Didn’t consciously think about how much joy travel brings me until I could no longer go. And races! I wasn’t able to complete the marathon and Ragnar race last year that I had planned. Fingers crossed that some races are brought back this year.

  108. K says...

    As a mom, it’s easy to put my fun on the back burner and prioritize my family’s activities. This past year we’ve been survival mode with the pandemic, and last month I was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer. I decided in the hospital that after I am recovered, I am signing up for fencing lessons! You know what’s not fun? Cancer. You know what sounds like fun? Sword fighting! Hoping to reclaim some joy and model for my daughters that it’s never too late to try something new :)

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      that is amazing, K. thinking of you during your hospital stay. xoxo

    • Connie says...

      Crush it, K. Get back on your feet, grab that sword and by all means, reclaim that joy.
      We’re rooting for you. :)

    • Clare says...

      Sending a million hugs, K, and looking forward to swordfighting updates in future comments! xoxo

    • Marisa says...

      Wow, K- what an incredible comment! I was feeling a lot of anxiety today and your comment really put things into perspective. Thank you so much and can’t wait to get an update from you. <3

    • Carol Hinz says...

      Oh, K, I’m so sorry to hear this and love your plan to sign up for fencing lessons once your recovered.

    • Farhana says...

      We’re sending lots of hugs and prayers for you. XX.

  109. b says...

    Also, I should add, I spent much of 2019 and 2020 trying to soothe my anxiety with books and music, which resulted in books and albums being bought but not read or listened to because #anxietyfordays. But spring 2021 arrived and it’s like a switch was flipped and I’m reading and listening more than the last three years combined.

  110. b says...

    It’s already mid-April, but I’m looking forward to getting my finances back on track. The last two and a half years have been rough financially with two big moves, a few bouts of unemployment, and being very unsure about a lot of things. BUT, I have finally found confidence in my job and am excited to get back on track financially.

    • Cecile says...

      My office moved to Brussels last fall and I’d been looking forward to get to know the city and its shops, restaurants, bars, galleries, neighborhoods… I’ll cherish my second chance like nothing before. To dive into the city life of a place you don’t know very well yet… So much happiness coming my way.

    • B says...

      Yes, Cecile! I’m trying to figure out where I want to live in 2022. I’m torn between returning to a place that feels like home and finding somewhere entirely new and re-establishing my sense of self and independence. I love my family dearly and am thankful to have had a support system over the last wild year, but I’m missing my independence – to play my music louder, to eat ice cream for a snack, to eat what I want for dinner.

    • Audrey Oliveira says...

      Hi Cecile
      I am in brussels too (french but i have been living here for a while now), don’t know where you live but if you want to go on a walk with a coffee sometime, don’t hesitate to send me your email address and i’ll contact you :)