Welcome to Grateful Heart Monday! Today I’m choosing to begin my week with a piece of gratitude for having overcome something I struggled for years with and that’s being able to enjoy spending time alone with just myself.
Spending time alone with only myself is definitely something I used to despise. Whether I was at home or out engaging in some activity, I always occupied any of it with someone else. Why? Because the idea of being alone used to make me feel extremely uncomfortable inside. Much of that dealt with abandonment issues I hadn’t worked through, while another big part of it dealt with the deep-seated insecurities I had with the person I saw in the mirror every day. My reality back then was that I really didn’t like me and the idea of doing anything alone made that feeling grow even stronger. Over the years though, I gradually worked through all the underlying issues surrounding this dislike of spending time alone and have come to truly appreciate it now.
Take last Tuesday for example. I got in my car around 12:30pm and drove a good hour and a half north to an artsy movie theater where a small indie film was playing that I wanted to see. As I sat in the auditorium watching it while eating some snacks, I found gratitude in the number of times my Spirit and heart connected to the main actor’s angst in the film. After it was over, I drove to a miniature golf course nearby and played a game for the first time in my life totally alone, which I found oddly satisfying. Ironically, I also shot the lowest score I think I ever have on any miniature golf course and thus was able to drive home with even more gratitude.
The fact is, I enjoy my time alone so much these days, that I often prefer it over spending time with others. Now, when I’m at home, I don’t constantly lock myself in conversations on the computer or on my phone with someone else. Instead, I find joy working on puzzles, coloring, or watching my favorite shows and tend to talk to God while doing any one of them. I also find joy in maintaining and talking to my yard and gardens on a spiritual level, which I’m sure probably sounds totally weird, but it’s just something I like doing by myself now. As for when I venture from my home, I enjoy taking long rides in my car, sitting by the water, going to the movies, playing games in arcades, dining at new restaurants, taking strolls through picturesque parks, and now mini-golfing as well, all alone.
You see, it’s in all those moments spent alone, where I discovered not only a greater love and appreciation for myself, but also a deeper relationship with my Higher Power. Far too often, I think too many of us keep ourselves so busy and occupied, that we fail to hear our Higher Power’s attempts to communicate to us. And because of it, we reject our Higher Power as not existing or not caring, and in turn keep ourselves even more occupied so we don’t have to feel the pain that can come from this.
Believe me, I spend years keeping myself so occupied that I probably missed out on many moments my Higher Power was trying to talk to me. But, when my health forced me to slow down and start spending a lot more time by myself, I began to see that my Higher Power seems to talk to me more in those moments, as compared to all the times I was rather pre-occupied with someone else.
So, as I start a fresh week off with this new piece of gratitude, I find myself feeling exactly that inside my very soul, all because I learned how to appreciate any moment I get to spend alone, as there I stand my best chance on hearing from my Higher Power, which is definitely something to be grateful for when it happens, now isn’t it?
Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson