How we help each other to heal

Observations

I have been very silent on my blog while my life was moving in all directions. It has been two months now that I rented a room/apartment in a new neighborhood and I feel that this quiet neighborhood is good for me. Since then I have done a lot of things. I am deepening my knowledge about almost everything that interests me, be it acting, contemporary arts, translation or poetry among others. And the most amazing part is the journey with others.

For each area and each part of myself, I encounter a person who corresponds to it in real life and we get into exchange. For example, thanks to the belief of Vito, a friend who is a pianist, I am about to record my first audio book and had a great first poetry reading at a bar here in Berlin. It was such a good feeling to read out my poetry and have the listeners engage emotionally. Amazing!

So, life brings all those lovely people into my reality, continuously. I am never alone. And old friends and those who are turning into friends from olden days are here, too. I am simply really happy about the love that I feel.

Also, I see that the exchange is both sided in all cases. Even though I am not always capable of defining or perceiving with what I am helping the other, I know that there is something I do somehow.

You know how it feels when you want to hug the world? Right now is such a moment!

Thank you, everybody! Thank you for helping me heal! Thank you, for letting me stay by your side the bit of time I can.

close up photo of person holding crystal stone

Photo by Deena on Pexels.com

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Thank you 2018!

Memories, Observations

2018 is coming to its end and I am in Svib, Croatia, where I spend the Christmas season with my family. For me Christmas started on the 22nd with the invitation of the father and continued throughout all these days being closer to my family.

In January this year I had written down a post with the title “JANUARY, 1ST, 2019 – WHAT I DID IN 2018“, an exercise to get the things you want to happen in that year and some of them became true, others didn’t. I want to quote the listed objectives of that post and reflect on their fulfillment or non-fulfillment.

Let’s start!

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.

The surgery went really well but it was the most painful time of my life. It was not only that a bunch of organic material had been removed but also my intestine had to be scraped clean. The period your intestine needs to get back to function is a challenge, but I managed. The surgery was important in many aspects for me to see life. One is that I believe that my fear in the relationship I had, had caused all these organic materials to grow. But more about that in a later quote.

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 was part of one workshop series about the Chinese New Year and related the Chinese Zodiac to one of artist Ai Weiwei’s works (of course, it had to be intellectual as well). I met interesting colleagues working in related fields but also some of my old and current students attended the workshop and I got to know them better. The beautiful aftermatch was that I managed to get into Ai WW’s project in Trancoso as an interpreter and could observe how a mega art project is actually organized and created which was enrichening for my personal development and understanding of things.

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.

That was in discussion but did not happen. Carla and me know each other for quite some time now and our friendship, fellowship turns more and more into common business projects. We started “Save Me Teacher BR” on Instagram in November this year, aiming to help those interested in learning Brazilian Portuguese and hoping of course to build up a larger community which will then translate back into language teaching and language solutions.

Also I published three new books, one with my friend Carla on Brazilian culture and another poetry collection, this time in Portuguese. The third book even found a publisher, which is a volume for young Brazilian Chinese learners.

Well! Not exactly but that’s explicable. The projects that survived and are under development needed a certain liberation and maturity from my side. A week ago I published a poetry volume in Brazilian Portuguese named “A Busca Pelas Palavras: Poemas da Minha Alma Brasileira” on Amazon. The book is divided into three phases of my life. The end, the middle and the beginning, covering a time span of 2 1/2 years of my life.

The book for Brazilian kids learning Chinese is half way through and I am looking for investments and publisher (or both in one) to finish it soon. I was very afraid that I might have lost the wonderful person who is illustrating the stories due to the confusions and changes that were going on in my life. But we are still a team and we are going to finish this.

I still want to do the book with Carla!

One new book project, a story about Berlin, is in development. Yes! I am getting there!

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.

This is actually becoming true! I started calling myself a writer and poet without shame. I still shy away when people give me a compliment because I am only self-published and never sought for a publisher.

Also I believe in all the skills I acquired the last eight years after graduating from university and found a really nice project of learners’ material creation, which again will give me more knowledge to go for my own more contemporary projects in 2019. I started believing in myself again. Isn’t that an amazing feeling?

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.

Well, we improved by almost 100% but still far away from covering the costs. Estimatedly we’re going to need three more years to record figures in the black.

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.

Well, almost all of you know by now that this did not happen. And you know what? I added this part to my article out of inner guilt. It was my ex’s highest objective to have a child. No matter how our relationship went, no matter how I felt, no matter where I was in my mind. All these years that we had tried and I didn’t manage, I had to listen to his voice accusing me of not wanting to have children. Well, in the end I saw that this was partly true. I was afraid of having children with him, of his teaching methods that I could observe first hand on myself and I could not imagine this to work out. For a while I thought, well, if we have a child and don’t get along, I can still separate from him. But that created other fears, the fear of being controlled for the rest of my life through the bond of a child. It was only during my Trancoso interpreter job that I had managed to be honest towards myself and towards him and I told him that I did not want to have a child with him. In consequence we broke up, smoothly.

About Christmas, I am here. And summer and Christmas strengthened my bonds with my family again. With many of the family members at least. That’s wonderful!

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 on the spot, don’t annoy me much and I don’t spend much time thinking about those.

Simply true!

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.

The tension when we actually were working on moving together was so big that I cancelled the whole project. And that was really smart. He soon was not working in that city anymore.

I am sure that my dear ex understands now that life is not a straight line.

And I see that all the experience I made is beneficial to me. Yes, I do!

Thank you 2018! You’ve been wonderful to me!!!

You were! Thank you 2018!

The People I meet

Memories

It’s been a long time now that I wanted to write this article and there’s a lot of stuff going on these days in Berlin, that I would like to talk about, too. So, I better finish the article on the people I meet.

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Since April and May this year, I have met many people and thus many influences. I learn from the personalities that cross my path. Here I would like to focus only on a very short and specific period of the year for two reasons. The first one is that the article would become a book if I included everyone prior and past this period, because the world brought me luckily many enlightening, inspiring and motivating encounters. Second, the people of this very short period of let’s say eight weeks, were those that I needed to meet to be able to not lose myself.

From the end of July till the end of September I have been working in an art-gallery on board of ships. Yes! Such a thing exists and I really believed in the project. For the doubts that came up, the people I met, helped me to find answers, bit by bit. Person to person.

Let’s start in early August.

 

Mr. Artist

Mr. Artist is a wonderful person from New York and even though not yet a full time artist but surely has an artist’s mind. Ship life was not really something he liked that much since he did not feel as old as the other passengers. No matter his age, he felt and behaved like a young person, while many people of the same age already start talking about how they will pass away soon. Mr. Artist is open, funny and empathetic. He made me believe in myself and made me laugh. I managed to open up and relax in his presence. Also, thanks to him, I did not forget who I was and what I know. Pretty much right from the start I learned to test and expand the rules that were established by others. That was important. My hunger for life outside ships grew.

 

Ms. Scarf

Ms. Scarf was the most important person and friend to me. With her I felt again the pure love a friendship between two women can bring, like one of these childhood friendships, you know? Ms. Scarf is from Thailand and has a great artistic education and expression.

We met sometimes in the smoking room and one night I was a bit drunk already and we started talking about how I felt isolated by the people working around me and she just had the same problem. People often put a stamp on you either due to your origins, looks or whatever. We gave each other hope that things would become better. Often we just met during my break and she was working and we exchanged looks and smiles that would tell us everything we needed.

After less than a month I was transferred to another ship and the night before leaving I had a farewell meeting but only after the official part was over, and I had not managed to meet Ms. Scarf, the Musician (another nice character I met), convinced me to try to find my friend. It was already after midnight when Ms. Scarf and I met on the corridor and she was about to do her laundry. She asked whether the party was still going on and I said, that I didn’t know. She decided to make it a party and well, I could not have had a better farewell. She and her friends prepared drinks and sound and even food and we talked and danced in the pool area. We had so much fun, breaking the rules kind of fun and just letting go and exchanging. It felt so good! The next morning Ms. Scarf and I managed to meet during her break. She had only slept two hours that night. She gave me a scarf, a beautiful batik piece of organic fabric that kept me warm after us parting.

 

Mr. Road Less Traveled

Mr. Road Less Traveled was a very nice and smart person who I met during the second week of my job in a political discussion that emerged among some guests and me. Well, politics is never something one can win and we both soon withdrew from any attempt to convince our republican chat partner and started a conversation in parallel where we figured out that we actually have a great way of exchanging. If I remember it right, all it took was a mere reaction in both our eyes when we gave up on that topic of politics to know that we had better things to talk about. I learned a lot about Mr. Road Less Traveled’s life, how things turned out for him and how he learned from everything and took his own conclusions. Some topics were partners, divorce and how to have a good relationship. But also job, isolation and jealousy, which was something I had to deal with more. We met in the evenings with so much pleasure and in the end I met his wonderful life partner and she also taught me some things she had learned about life and love. They were really motivational and I am so grateful for the book tip I received from him. Ironically I got this book tip twice which is one of the reasons that I am actually rereading it again now. Also, the content needs to sink in better. But “The Road Less Traveled” is about how you approach life and manage to go through your relationships and how you are on good terms with yourself and the people around you. It is a lot about discipline and dedication to the truth, values that help up us to improve.

 

Mr. Courageous

On my flight to the job in the end of July, I met Mr. Courageous, a short encounter and a conversation that lasted about seven hours, I guess. Interesting were the moments in between, the attention and conclusions Mr. Courageous drew from simple hints and observations, some so precise and so deeply hidden that I was really surprised and I wonder till now about how he accesses this kind of information. Mr. Courageous helped me simply by giving me hope and by believing in living the moment. Once you seize the moment you are no longer afraid. At one point of our short e-message exchange he also recommended the book “The Road Less Traveled” and that is another surprise if you consider that the book was written in the end of the 1970s, so it is pretty unusual that two very different people recommend it nowadays within 24h.

 

Mr. Motivator

Mr. Motivator was a great surprise encounter. In the beginning, I mistook him for an employee. Such a young person on board of a cruise ship. Well, there was a lot to exchange with this young Canadian lawyer. To me it is a pleasure to meet special and intelligent lawyers, because we usually share similar ethics and life views. I was in a moment where I had to learn to stand up for myself and believe in what is right to me. By then it had been years that I managed to stay away from typical company hierarchies, so being in such structures was quite challenging. Mr. Motivator showed me what he saw in me and the reflection of his observation helped me to move and get out of a situation that was not good for me. Also, I learned to simply have some fun and finally break the rules so that life became more human again. I remember for example a night in the piano bar, me singing while seated on top of the bar like in an old black and white movie and some secret kissing on the sofa beforehand. Yes! That was really nice! Mr. Motivator is definitely my B&W movie hero!

 

Ms. Travel, Mr. Macabre & Mr. Chess

I met all three of them in the first week on the new ship that cruised Europe. Ms. Travel and Mr. Macabre were travelling together. Mr. Chess was a very nice and intelligent colleague of mine, very clear minded.

Ms. Travel is an open woman and a good observer. She loves exploring new things. Besides our lovely chats, there was one evening when we were sitting with some other guests and Mr. Chess and all of us had had some drinks. Ms. Travel reminded me the next morning that drinking too much makes people aggressive and I reflected on the night before and realized that I and the others had lost our tolerance at some point. Yes! I learned from her to remind myself more often on the importance of listening.

Mr. Macabre is a friend of Ms. Travel’s who went through a separation and started looking positively at all the options life offers him. He has a cookery side business that he would like to do full time and what I learned in the exchange with him is that we are all going to be fine if we continuously seek our path. He said: In a year from now, we all will be doing something different, and he is right. I moved on.

Mr. Chess was a colleague of mine, very positive and helpful and always with an open ear. He is my Mr. Chess because one night we played and I had some fun, even though I was losing fast. But he taught me some strategic moves not only in chess but also in life. His book recommendation was  “Real Artists Don’t Starve” which I am reading now. And yes! It is true! He made me accept, even though he was sad about me leaving, that it is OK when something is not for you and to go out and do your thing. He always knew what to say, had an honest access to himself and therefore he is good with people. Also was he one of the few male colleagues I had, who were attracted to me but also respected me and my decision and managed to be only friends. Thank you very much for this! Had I not had Mr. Chess with me on the second ship, I would not have survived the whole thing mentally and intellectually. At least I introduced darts to Mr. Chess, not sure if I left any other impact.

 

Mrs. Lady and Mr. Barcode

Well, I almost forgot to mention Mrs. Lady and Mr. Barcode! I met them when the ship reached Warnemunde and we traveled together to Berlin by train which is a three hour ride. Without having planned anything, we took the same train and wagon on the way back. They frequently visited me in the gallery afterwards and went with me through my hopes and crisis. And they helped me especially with the incident of sexual harassment I had to go through. Mrs. Lady and Mr. Barcode were simple travelers, loved discovering naturally what life brought them. With them I learned to trust my guts and they were more than happy when they learned that I had quit my job to start over somewhere else. I won’t forget you! Mr. Barcode got this nickname actually because his father co-invented the barcode. Can you believe that? Pretty nice!

So, among many other interesting personalities and helpful people, these are the ones that especially helped me to learn at a high speed about life’s matters. Now it is about me to be patient while moving, observing, listening and filtering when entering other people’s realities. I need to figure out my own version of all this now.

 

 

 

 

Reflection

Basic

The first week of project “personal balance” has passed and here is a summary.

 

What I did?

I changed my attitude and tried to be more easy going on some things. I started deleting unnecessary web profiles. I said “thank you” more often. I reduced responsibilities by taking out one of my tasks. The effect of this will only be visible in a month from here. I started two new classes.  My Saturday afternoon student cancelled and it is OK for both of us. (He was cancelling a lot and not developing much and that frustrated me. I was thinking of giving him an ultimatum or something but then the situation solved itself.) I got my Saturday afternoons back! Yippie!

 

How I feel?

Still a little overloaded with tasks but I can take it better because I know that things change in the long run. I actually thought whether my first post about my motivation for working so hard was correct. I concluded that what pushed me the last two years were actually additional life costs. I am helping partly my family and I had a wedding last year. All that caused a pressure for having more money on my account than I personally need. Now that the situation around me is stabilising I finally have the luxury to relax a bit more. I guess that me trying to earn more money in order to take care of other people too, is something most men suffer all their lives. Especially here in Brazil, where man are a bit more traditional. When they choose their career, they often don’t follow their heart. They have a second calculation of what awaits them in life and unfortunately put a lot of weight on the latter. Sometimes we forget, that the world (will learn to) spin(s) also without us.

 

What I plan doing next?

I will copy important online files but keep on deleting myself from the web. I will try to meet the friend that I have not seen in a year within the next 14 weeks. Also I would like to cook twice a week. Gymnastics for my back on a regular basis would be nice, too. I will not seek for new students.

Have a wonderful weekend all together!

Kika

“I got Daisies” – What it means!

Basic

Yesterday I had a long moment where suddenly the results of my actions seemed so clear. I could feel the stress of the last six months on my shoulders, professional stress, private stress, stress in my head because of having too many ideas appearing and just not feeling prepared or diligent enough to work all of them out. I realised how much time and effort I had put into work. At first I thought it was my husband’s absence causing me to turn into a workaholic but it was not that. No! I always felt like I had to do be successful in something and that basically to proof that I am capable of doing things in a good way. Of course the second reason is that I wanted to be economically as successful as the people around me. As a private language teacher I face many specialists and executive staff. I always give my best but even when I give my best “best” I don’t get every month what they receive as a salary. Thinking of growing gradually and not taking any incautious steps, I had changed my business in some parts and expanded my activities gradually. I have surely learned a lot by doing so and I  know that my job, where I work with people all the time, makes me very happy. I love spending time with my students, not only teaching them, but watching them developing, hearing what they did last weekend with their loved ones and so on. But still, in the end I worked too much. It was not just the students. It was more like this:

Project 1 – language teaching

Project 2 – translating

Project 3 – specific language projects

Project 4 – my mum’s business

Project 5 – expanding the range of languages I work with by bringing the right teachers together with the right students and securing their communication. Thus I gave myself a small commission on their classes. Yesterday I suddenly felt so bad about this point, but that is for a post some other time.

Project 6 – art project proposal

Project 7 – kid’s day activities

Project 8 – my book (which is nothing more than a digital file until I find the time)

Project 09 – language learner’s videos

Project 10 – promoting all that

I am sure that if you gave me five more minutes I could count until 20. But basically, that is it. All of that, all the time, plus my private life.

So, out of a sudden I could feel how deeply stressed I was. I rethought some of my commercial activities and thought of problems that came with it. I also thought about my husband and our marriage. We only have two days a week to be together. We should really do great stuff on those two days and develop some nice things together. But in the end I kept working on weekends. And I got used to it. After three weeks of vacation some activities surely had changed but the little fact that five weekdays were not enough anymore to deal with everything remained. So I went on working weekends.

Today I posted this text on my facebook page:

Ontem tive uma experiência que me abriu os olhos. Nos últimos dois anos estava muito enfocada em ter sucesso e aumentar minha área profissional. Isso funcionou de certa forma, mas o resultado foi que estava dedicando muito pouco tempo para as coisas que gosto muito, coisas como passar mais tempo de qualidade com meu marido, claro, encontrar meus amigos mais e ter mais tempo para aprender novas coisas. Dinheiro é legal, porque você consegue regularizar a sua vida e a dos outros, mas ele não deveria seu objetivo profissional. Nossa vida dura bastante tempo e precisamos passar nosso tempo com mais pensamento. A partir de hoje meu novo projeto é “balança pessoal” e vou me dedicar a isso nos próximos meses. Vou escrever sobre essas mudanças num novo blog, que já vou criar hoje. Vou me dedicar mais então ao “viver” no futuro. Um abraço a todos e tenham uma boa semana!

I was surprised that I got comments and likes worldwide. The facebook translation tool really works well. My Polish-German fellow, my American colleague in Japan and my Swedish-Croatian friend in The Netherlands all reacted in some way to the post. In fact I got 41 likes so far. That is a lot for a simple post on my site, believe me.

But even in a world of fast online translation, I would like to post a quick translation for the non-Portuguese speakers, so that you understand it all.

Yesterday I had an eye-opening experience. For the last two years I had been to focused in having success and broadening my professional field. It even kind of worked but the result was that I dedicated very little time to doing things I liked a lot, things like spending more quality-time with my husband and of course, spending more time with my friends and also having some time to learn new things. Money is fine, because you can regulate your life and even the lives of others but it shouldn’t be you professional aim. Our life lasts for very long and it is important to think a little deeper about how to spend that time. Starting today my new project is my “personal balance” and I will work on that for the next few months. I will write about those changes in a new blog which I will create today. I will then focus on “living” in the future. A big hug to everybody and have a great week!

Why did I choose the title “I got daisies”? Honestly? All possible and impossible names were taken on wordpress. I found this line in a song performed by Sarah Vaughn, “I got rhythm”. It goes “I got daisies in green vases, I got my man, who could ask for anything more.” When I found these lines and saw that nobody had taken that address (and I really had tried plenty of very absurd names before) I decided to make it my blog’s name. Daisies are not bad and I am a girl. There is so much more to say about this title but I will keep that for some other time.

Why the blog?

We’re facing an economic crisis in Brazil, Europe is in an identity-crisis, the Chinese RMB is performing worse than ever in the last years, and all I do is creating another blog. Maybe some of you will think of it as a life style blog or something similar, but it is not. I don’t know for how long this blog will live but I want to share the experiences about changing things to the better with you, because I know it might be useful to one or two of you as well. And I intend to write about people who have already faced great and positive changes to support my idea of “quality over luxury” (definition of luxury in its basic idea: something we don’t really need and maybe not even want).

Insta photo of the day:

Shoe orgy - I got daisies

Shoe orgy! These arrived today. Last week I went online to get “one” extra pair of comfortable shoes and this is what happened ^~^. I know, I really did not need these but here they are. And they make me happy, too.