Goodbye 2020, Hello 2021


Here’s our puppy.  His name is Benji.  Benji often is a joy, but at times Benji poses a huge challenge.  He was born in 2020, and like many things in 2020, Benji can be an exacerbating pain-in-the-rear.

Benji has semi-learned to go out through his doggy door to the outside world for his PPE (Poop and Pee Excursions).  But life is never that simple.  Just like a virus mutation that defies human measures to contain its spread, he’d surprise us by unloading a real whooper right there in the house. 

And spread his bowel and bladder movements he certainly does.  I try to preempt those moments when he’s about to unload one indoors; I quickly pick him up and hurry outside.  It’s always too late.  Like a little B-52, he drops his payload as I’m running for the door, and when I look back, he’s carpet-bombed the floor with multiple little poops.  After I plop him onto the grass, he looks at me with head tilted to one side with that innocent look only puppies can convey, then bolts back to the house, sometimes completing the mission by dropping one or two more.

Such is life.  It’s messy.  As with many of the world’s more pressing problems, this too shall pass.  We move forward and live blissfully until the next challenge.

Moments like these represents life’s inevitable challenges.  Unavoidable, nasty obstacles force us to face undesirable circumstances square in the eye.  We either run away or find means to overcome them.  In the end, we become better people for conquering our hardships, using them for positive change.  Ironically, this is life at its best.  As Bruce Lee said,

     “Do not pray for an easy life, pray for the strength to endure a difficult one.”

2020 has been a really poopy year.  We’ve had our share of major turds: COVID and lock-downs, racial unrest and riots, more-than-usual dysfunctional politics, to name but a few.  Yet all in all we’ll survive this year as we’ve done in years past, for there are many who dive head-first into the dung, sacrificing for the greater good.  This is a testament to the courage and charity and resiliency of humanity.  And when the dust settles, the dawn of a brighter future always springs forth.  Always. 

So goodbye 2020 and hello 2021.  Challenges keep coming and Benji’s still learning.  Just like our previous dog, Sammy, and the gazillions of domesticated dogs on earth, one day Benji too will exercise proper PPE outdoors.  One can only hope.

Happy New Year!

©Randall S. Fong, M.D.


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