Gratitude is a simple but powerful feeling, once you’ve got it you won’t look back.
Happy Friday friends.
My old Nanny Violet Furey was a lovely lady, gone for many years now but I never forget her kindness and love. And I never forget her sayings. She was from a generation that had lots of sayings and never stopped saying them.
“I used to moan I had no shoes until I saw a man who had no feet” she would say when teaching me the power of gratitude. I never knew that was what she was doing at the time, I was 5 and deeply traumatised at the prospect of meeting some poor soul with no feet. But as I got older I began to understand and appreciate her wisdom.
It’s been hard to avoid the awful images we’ve seen daily in the news over the last couple of weeks in Gaza and Israel. It’s also hard to understand how this can happen in 2023.
The war in Ukraine has been going on for over 18 moths now with no sign of peace.
People, families and communities being destroyed and ripped apart. The environments they live in, wiped out, reduced to rubble. Whilst governments, organisations, idealists, fanatics and Putin argue that they are right , innocent people are being killed daily.
As a human with the power of empathy and compassion it upsets me to see fellow humans in such desperate states of death, torture, trauma and despair. As an environmentalist it’s also hard to watch the damage to ecosystems and biospheres.
It gives us a feeling of helplessness. Beyond prayers and donations to aid charities, practically we can’t do much as individuals.
What I have done at times like this though is practiced gratitude. Nanny Violet also used to say, “ There but for the grace of God, go I” A simple way of reminding myself how lucky I am really. No-one gets to choose who they’re born to or where they’re born so I should be grateful for being able to bring my family up in a safe environment that allows us to thrive without fear and terror or the threat of death daily.
This weeks’ song link is therefore upbeat and reflective of my gratitude for being able to live such a charmed life in a stable and beautiful environment compared to others. Reasons to be Cheerful by Ian Dury and the Blockheads was released in 1979. The lyrics celebrate all the things the band appreciated after a near death experience on a tour made them think about stuff. Get it up on YouTube and have a little listen.
To finish this week I’ll leave you with my favourite ever bit of wisdom from Nanny Violet.
“Never criticise another man until you’ve walked a mile in his boots.
Then, when you have, call him what you like, you’re a mile away, and you’ve got his boots”
Thanks for reading, Have beautiful weekend.
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