Roles and expectations
Roles and expectations
When I turned five, I moved to Germany to a small town near Cologne. There my mother was working in a restaurant within a commercial center. Very often I would visit her and we’d go to the bakery, where I would usually get a milk roll or a Wackemann if it was winter. At the photographer we would take photos every now and then. But the nicest shop was the flower shop.
The first time I entered, I was amazed by the sweet smell. The flower seller was a young woman in her twenties and she was very beautiful. That was when I wished to be a flower seller once I grew up. The combination of everything I saw was creating an inviting harmony. I gave up on my dream the day my mum told me that I would have to go to school much longer and do my A levels to become a flower seller. Of course, that wasn’t true. But imagining at that time of my life that school would go on like forever, was very scary to me.
So, I moved on at the age of six and a half to my next professional aspiration: becoming an actress. But that’s another story.
Dreams of the past
The present and the future
Hundreds of thoughts
And some doubts too
Looking for absolution
And a path of truth
To walk into existence
The way it’s been meant to be
A unique walk
Just meant for me
This morning a student of mine told me about an interesting exercise and I want to invite everybody to do it with me. So, you are going to open your diary or take a piece of paper. Then you set the date to January 1st in 2019 and write down everything you “did” in 2018.
It’s been a great year for me. Everything started already pretty well. I had a surgery to treat my endometriosis and it went fine. I quickly recovered and had no side effects and my abdominal pain was reduced to almost 0. I have also held some great workshops regarding East Asian cultures and arts which brought me interesting new clients who appreciate my knowledge and which again motivated me to continue broadening my personal knowledge in this field. I even organized a series of workshops myself in a well established institution in Sao Paulo and I am working on promoting more and more the people with a certain knowledge and potential in areas I know. Oh, I should not forget to tell you that Carla and me developed a female entrepreneur group in which women learn from each other and gain the right motivation for their own projects.
Also I published three new books, one with my friend Carla on Brazilian culture and another poetry collection, this time in Portuguese. Some of my poems have been presented on local events. The third book even found a publisher, which is a volume for young Brazilian Chinese learners. One can find it in many bookstores around the whole country and my illustrators and me got great feedback on this one so far.
Professionally I am pursuing more and more the creative way. I am teaching and translating less and working more and more in the intercultural field, where I can help people more directly with specific problems in their adaption process.
Our guesthouse Villa Luka also faced a great year. We had many tourists from all over the world and all costs related can be covered easily by the income we have.
My relationship is going very smooth and I am happy to say that I am seven months pregnant. Since it is fine for pregnant women to fly I have spend Christmas 2018 with my family in Croatia and we had a great time. Everybody opened up and we strengthened our bonds even tighter.
I myself understand life so much better now and really focus on the things that matter to me at the moment. Letting life flow and not being mad about the little things that don’t seem to add up right at the spot, don’t annoy me much and I don’t spend much time thinking about those.
We have moved to a nicer place where we have enough space to be a family and I support my husband in his career as much as he does support mine. He now understands that life is not always a straight red line, that all the things we do can be connected someday and that the experience I have made in all my fields is beneficial for my current and future tasks.
Thank you 2018! You’ve been wonderful to me!!!
My life was rather complicated and somehow uncomplicated the last months. I have spent a lot of energy thinking about my relationship, my professional life and if there is anything waiting for me in the future.
I figured that no matter what, you can’t forget to look after yourself. Your personal health is something to pay attention to. Don’t wait too long to see a doctor when you feel that something isn’t right. Don’t blame yourself in case that there really isn’t something right and focus on solving the problem. Bit by bit!
When stepping into society, we can see how we are all looking for something to believe in, something that shows us the way but maybe all this does not lie around outside. Maybe looking a little deeper and nicer inside yourself will give you the answers you need.
Some of the questions I have been dealing with were:
My mentor told me, that he’d like me to connect better with my feelings. I started getting back to small meditations during the day. I thought that that might help but then I saw that my problem is probably not being unable to feel, but sometimes not being able to express what I feel, neither in words nor in physical states. Not knowing how to describe your feelings is not a big deal. Actually I think that feelings are all so interwoven and complex that humanity still has no vocabulary for that. Not showing feelings too much has to do with self protection or even protecting the other. Besides that, it is something that comes from our family culture, it is something we might have learned.
Dreamer, as I am, I imagine relationships to be like in romantic B&W movies but the truth is, that sometimes you can be in a relationship where both parts love each other but it’s not always a loving relationship. And that’s where you have to take a step back. That step can manifest itself in different forms, such as taking a break, going to couples therapy, studying yourself and human behavior, and other solutions. Taking a step back showed me and my partner, that things were not OK the way they were going. We couldn’t just be another couple stuck in a relationship and treating the other as if they were no human being. After working things out a bit, the way you live your relationship might improve a lot.
That’s something I am definitely not clear about. The whole world has always been a construct to me and reading Sapiens just confirmed that again. We’re all just playing in our own versions of reality. So, do I have the same measures of success and fulfillment as the people around me? It’s like, even if you see through all these things, they still sometimes draw you in and you might feel a bit like you haven’t made it, no matter the model you compare yourself with.
Still working on answering that. Since life is unpredictable, there is not much we can do about it. We can imagine having a long life span and plenty of time. What’s important in this life for you? What do you want to do with your time and who should be in your life? There is this five year exercise, which is promising to achieve your goals within only five years. But then again, what would be the right goals to visualize, so that you don’t get stuck in another dilemma? So, I am feeling good right now having ideas and working on them, trying out new things. It just feels like that they lead to nothing more than personal fulfillment right at that moment. But is that so wrong?
And the sun has set
Stopped burning me
Try to embrace me
Understanding is giving
Giving up is giving
Observing is learning
An open heart is…
Don’t know yet.
Deep blue or slight turquoise
Life in a beautifully destined style
Still within a scope of options
Sky blue with white shadows
The illusion of limitless
Yet inspiring and reflecting from above
And me in the middle
Wondering where and what my options are
And how many borders I yet have to cross
My last trip back to my old homes in Germany and Croatia taught me again a lot. This time I managed to meet different old friends and I have also spent the summer with my family after many years. Since I live in Brazil and travelling during the European summer is more expensive than in other seasons, I rarely had the chance. But summer in Croatia on our little hill with those family members who are still alive, was a good experience.
And I don’t know where to start and how to describe all these impressions of mine.
We arrived in Frankfurt in the end of July. Since we both started smoking again, we went to the smoking area outside. Frankfurt is an international airport receiving travelers from all over the world and many aren’t used to such smoking zones. Anyway, so there were a lot of cigarettes on the floor and one of the pipelike ashtrays caught fire. The responsible cleaner, a man in his 40s, visually with an Arabic background, really lost it and cursed while violently cleaning the area. And this is something that one can see in Germany and surely some other countries, too, independent from the cultural background of the employees. People show their frustration openly and feel no urge to be polite or positive in front of others. Two days later when sitting in a café in Heidelberg with our friends from Brazil, I reflected how I used to be towards customers when working at the cashier in the cinema. It is a very stressful job and one where you can learn that most people are actually very helpless creatures when it comes to finding information. So, almost all of us regularly lost it in front of the customer. I regularly asked people, if they knew how to read. Since I live in Brazil, I think that I have changed. Brazilians are different and I would say, that they never show their personal frustration or problems in a professional context. And I don’t think that this is wrong. Some might say that it is unhealthy to put on a mask at work but I think that both, the service provider and the customer benefit from this since they are leaving the situation satisfactorily. Within the years I learned to appreciate this and I used it to develop naturally this polite character trait within me and I actually feel like this is much more ‘me’. I am not weak because I am polite. And after a terrible fight at home, it actually helps me to get better, when I encounter my students with a smile and listen to their weekend adventures.
There were many other little experiences I had during our vacation and maybe I will tell you more about this, soon.
Go and pick some daisies ^~^!
It’s been more than a week since I got back to Europe. First we visited Heidelberg and participated in the beautiful wedding of a wonderful friend and now we’re in Croatia. The days and nights are hot and my mind goes slower while the heat at night makes me dream and process weired stuff. Like, when I saw how aggressive people can be when they don’t like their jobs and cultural etiquette never taught them to keep their hatred to themselves. In Germany you can see many imigrants working in lower cleaning jobs and especially man, when they think that they should be doing something more prestigious, can become very unsatisfied and provocative. I remember a case where the father of a friend, who used to work as a doctor in a libanese hospital, could not validate his doctor’s degree in Germany and was forced to work as a cleaner at a hospital. This frustration and his cultural background made him treat the women of his family very bad.
Here in Croatia overly emotional reactions are so normal, especially for men.
All these things that I see, the shared unhappiness of many people, makes me feel misplaced but also reflect on how much of this emotional local culture influences me in my behavior until today. I have learned so much but when people are really very close, sometimes reason does not lead me and I get blind to the fact that I might have misunderstood a situation.
Well, it is always interesting to get back and learn from the encounters.
The wind blows faster
through the colorful corridor
Invites you to seek for his origins
Somewhere at the seaside
More than an hour away
People come to a quiet and calming place
To make it loud and agitated
Children scream and parents shout
Adults start talking louder
I guess that’s the way it is
when you have more than one child
Oh, dear wind! Don’t give up on blowing
refreshing my mind
and trying to bring back calmness
into this colored corridor