When MM+M called on you to share stories about the people and things that gave them hope, made them laugh or otherwise helped them manage a turbulent year, you didn’t disappoint. Here are some of the best responses — and if you have one to add to the list, don’t hesitate to send it to [email protected].

Photo Credit: Kira Kuhar

#WhoPulledMeThrough, or what pulled me through, was the riverwalk along the Susquehanna River right outside my apartment in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. I’m someone who naturally prefers an office to a desk in my home, so shifting to working from my dining room, alone all day and night, was stressful and unnerving. But the riverwalk helped me enjoy my new situation: It gave me a view far more beautiful than the one I had in the office. It gave me a space to clear my head when the lines between work and home began to blur too heavily. It gave me a place to escape the isolation we’ve all felt this year.

When it was bright and sunny, I could go and sit along the river. I could watch people walk their dogs and groundhogs scurry along the grass. I could watch kayakers paddle to the islands and swimmers float around their boats. It helped me keep a clear head and fresh pair of eyes as I worked through this pandemic. I think everyone needed a new place to “get away from the office” to help them pull through this year. For me, that place was the riverwalk.

– Kira Kuhar, account strategist, Pavone

At the onset of the pandemic, Goodfuse CEO, Olga Fleming, and Managing Director, Courtney Walker, craved connectivity and normalcy. To that end, Olga and Courtney launched “The New Abnormal” in March 2020, a vlog series recorded from their respective living rooms featuring commentary about the highs and lows of the year – miniature therapy sessions, essentially.   

Setting aside the time to touch base and share what was on their minds allowed Olga and Courtney to stay connected and gave them something to look forward to. “The New Abnormal” helped pull them through the uncertainty of the pandemic and provided some consistency, excitement and normalcy during an otherwise abnormal year.

– Rachel Heringer, director, marketing, Goodfuse

I’m a psychologist and, frankly, I feel like there aren’t many people to pull through those people whose whole job is to pull through other people. Many mental health providers are solo practitioners. 

It’s been hard pulling others through for many months, whether it’s clients or my family.  Having said that, it’s nothing compared to what ICU providers are enduring. I have to say that, without faith, there are days that would otherwise have felt very alone. My friends have definitely helped, even if I didn’t specifically ask for it. With their keen sensitivity and unconditional love, pets have also been a godsend.

– Sonja Benson, Ph.D., www.MNCouples.com

1. My family, who kept me sane (mostly) and who never allowed me to take myself too seriously.

2. “Schitt’s Creek,” which is by far the funniest TV series ever written in my opinion. We binge-watched as a family during the early days of the pandemic/shutdown and laughed so hard we were afraid our neighbors would have us locked up.

3. Virtual learning. From crafting the perfect cocktail to virtual travel tours to gardening with a master gardener, staying active and engaged helped me keep my sanity, as an avid learner and social butterfly who couldn’t do much flying this year. 

– Kimberlee Young, director of operations, Vault Bioventures