At the start, my wife and I welcomed the new year from a fancy international hotel.
My birthday was in February.
In March, my wife and I started working from home. We thought it would only be for a month.
In April, we watched the crab apple trees and magnolia trees bloom along the sidewalks during our habitual walk to Powderhorn Park. I worked on a rain garden and planted flowers.
At the end of May, George Floyd was killed. We woke up and smelled burning rubber; Minneapolis was burning. The next day, I watched thousands of people show up with brooms and snow shovels to clean up. I want to know where they came from, and where they went afterwards. That night, my brothers and I sat up, watching hundreds of police cars and Humvees drive past our house.
In June, we walked through George Floyd Square and cried. I listened. I watched thousands march past my house chanting for justice.
In July, we celebrated my wife’s birthday and our anniversary. My wife and I also went camping on the north shore of Lake Superior. When we returned to Minneapolis, our walk through Powderhorn Park took us past hundreds of tents. They were gone at the end of July. I want to know where they went. I started to be able to tell the difference between gunshots and fireworks. I weeded in my yard and finished my rain garden.
In August, my wife and I bought beets and cucumbers at the Minneapolis Farmers Market and learned to pickle.
In September, I found out I was going to need to find a new job.
I found one in October.
In November, our furnace went out and we bought a new one. My uncle also taught me to shoot, and I got my first deer. I listened to a lot of people contradict and not listen to each other during election season. My wife and I both voted. I took pictures of the art in George Floyd Square and sent it to my parents. I was reminded of what G.K. Chesterton said, in his essay “The Twelve Men”: “Tragedy is the highest expression of the infinite value of human life.” I cried. My wife and I made a pact to keep walking through Powderhorn Park all winter, no matter how cold it got. I read about violence in Minneapolis and watched children scream in glee as they flew down hills fresh with snow in Powderhorn Park. I decided to internet less. COVID put the kabosh on normal Thanksgiving. My wife made Thanksgiving dinner, and we ate it together. It was fun.
In December, we found out my wife was pregnant with our first. I was excited. We kept walking through Powderhorn Park. Some days were very cold, and we turned back early.
That was my year.