One of the emotions that shines through in all Daydreamers, but is of short supply with Sleepwalkers is gratitude. When I think back through my lifetime I remember paying a hell of a lot of lip service to gratitude. When I was a child, I would complain about a lack of material substance and my parents would tell me how grateful I should be with what I had. I remembered the word, and I used it a lot, but I never really connected to the emotion.
As I started to realise that I could achieve anything in life, it change my perspective. I welcomed new behaviours into my life, and as I didn’t have time to do everything, some of my old behaviours were left outside for the bin man. I started to complete a Thinking Journal and during my ritual I would note down all of the things that I was grateful for. I would really give this some serious thought, and it was the continual repetition that enforced how grateful I should be – and am. I am still learning, but feel like my improved relationship with gratitude is really helping me to become a much more rounded and positive person. My gratefulness prevents all of the minor irritations of life affecting me like they used to. I still have a whine and a moan but I am turning the tables a lot quicker than I might have done so in the past.
In the past fortnight I have started checking in each night with my girlfriend. Checking in, is essentially the both of us going through our day and expressing our emotions and feelings. At the end of our check-in we tell each other what we are grateful for and once again this is really helping me have a better outlook on life.
I haven’t been seeing my son a lot since I split up from my wife and started to work abroad a lot more. I live in the spare room at my parent’s house and so when Jude sleeps over we share a bed. Last night I couldn’t keep my eyes off him. It was as if I was suddenly aware of how much I had taken our relationship for granted in the first eleven years of his life.
Then this morning after he had left, the snow poured from the heavens. I had to go to the shop and as I walked through the Valley I started taking photographs. Yesterday I received a phone call from an old friend. “How are things you high roller?” He said. I told him that just because I worked abroad it did not mean I was a high roller – quite the contrary. “Anywhere away from this shit hole is high rolling,” said my friend.
My friend’s view of the Valley is shared by a lot of people who live here. Once upon a time I had the same view – I detested the place. But these days I have a different philosophy. I love this place and I am so grateful that my parents chose to bring me here 27-years ago. It brings me feelings of security, warmth and beauty.
Photos courtesy of me: all taken where I live either last night or today.