I, Crystal Ra grew up in Estonia and we did not celebrate Valentine’s Day during the Soviet times. We celebrated Women's day on the 8th of March. I remember how I waited for the 8th of March, as this was usually the day were the family bought one of those crème cakes and usually grandfather or father brought flowers home. It was the anticipation for the special something which I did not get every day.
As Valentine's Day celebrating is still quite new to me I always like to make it special according to my desires and needs. I think very many of us just follow the mainstream during the Valentine's Day, flowers, cake, gifts, and dinner. There are so many different ways to celebrate it and make it special for you and your loved ones. So with this post I will call everyone to re-evaluate how you celebrate your Valentine's Day and why.
Michael gave me a little white teddybear with a sweet chocolate last year and I gave him a wonderful Valentine's card. We sealed the exchange of these little but sweet gifts with our kisses and went our separate ways for the day. He went to work in the Mountain Thunder Coffee Plantation and I joined the Hawaiian Outrigger Canoe club Kai 'Opua for my early morning paddle and worked in my home office for the rest of the day.
At the Canoe Club it happened so that the second double canoe was taken off the list so we had to quickly find a seat in one of the single hull canoes with an outrigger stabilizer extending off the left side of the hull. The Wa'a Kaukahi was the most common and most abundant type of canoe in the old days they say. I have always tried to avoid these as I am a bit afraid of the experience of this to capsize with me and everyone in it.
I should have definitely checked the seat before landing there as this was not made for my wide hips ;( and once you are out on the water - it is super hard to change seats. I was so scared it is going to capsize and putting others in danger as well - that I tried to make it work in the very same spot through the whole time. Whatever way I tried it did not really work. My body was in awkward position and I really did not enjoy it at all. I felt pain everywhere and I could not give my full power. I was happy that the paddling journey was shorter than regularly. It did not help that the man behind me was very unhappy with my situation and gave me negative feedback many times. I have never had anything negative happening while paddling yet and that was not really the best Valentine's day gift I thought.
We did not capsize and we got back pretty dry. Luckily the steersman saw my struggle and came to me after we were back and said I did a good job in my circumstances. Later the man who made the comment to me came and kind of tried to make me feel better.
This experience made me think. I understood what the canoe was trying to teach me.
As in the canoe - so in life - check out first where you are sitting - as it may set the course and influence the quality of your journey. It is always possible to adjust but it may be more complicated later. Better adjust it right away when you discover it does not work for you on your terms!I guess it is a good symbol for relationships as well.
Many of us do not quite check first where they are sitting (in which relation-ships they are going into) and then later will not adjust because they try to make it work or suffer (trying to avoid the discomfort for the other person) and so they capsize their relationship in the long run, as when your 'hips are wide' you can not make them smaller... You have to accept who you are as you are and what your body is like and then let the outer circumstances adjust to that or change your own position and choose another seat or another canoe (another relationship).
Most of my relationships in my past got capsized because I was trying to adjust according to other people or the circumstances around me and tried to squeeze in my 'wide hips'. The key to change that is to become more conscious yourself and have a conscious partner who does not allow you to suffer if you feel uncomfortable or if he feels uncomfortable. There needs to be courage to tell the other, stop right now!!! He or she would do whatever to fix it right there if you have not yourself already and it will set a complete new course for the future.
I am so lucky that I have that partner in my life now who is conscious, pushes me forward and believes in me even when I lose hope in myself. That is one of the biggest gifts one can have in life. I am so grateful. Thank you my dear husband Michael for being who you are and not letting me to go for less in anything and notice if I am out of the old habit 'try to suffer' or fit my 'wide hips in'. <3
I am proud of myself and that I tried something new. I am also much more aware of my own responsibility to find a right seat fitting for my body and me fitting for the canoe. So we can work together and get the canoe going in full power! So I guess I got a Valentine's gift out of it anyways. Appreciating what I have and understanding the dynamics of many dysfunctional relationships. Thank you the spirit of Valentine – that was a nice gift indeed!
Hawaiian Outrigger canoe paddling is not just paddling. It is like being in a university. Aloha university. Getting to know yourself better in so many ways. This is what fascinates me in Hawaiian culture – everything they do is so deep – whether it is hula or their language or old cultural traditions.
Michael thought about my story and that life has a funny way of teaching us lessons, he said: “You learned something that didn't work and now know what works better. I am just proud of you for having the courage to try new things and open enough to learn from them. I'd say that is a great Valentines gift....”
When Michael got home he had another gift waiting to surprise him from me, a little water shirt with the Hawaiian paddler on it and Michael had made his famous royal no bake cheese cake to have as Valentine’s desert. We had a wonderful mellow night watching a Valentine's movie and relaxing. There is beauty in simple things.
Michael's Valentine's flowers do not only come on Valentine's Day, they can come any day of the week or month. There is always the surprise element. I got flowers today on the 16th of February and I must say I appreciate it much more as this was not expected but surprisingly given. The flowers are on the corner of my table at the moment and they smell so good. I feel like a queen in the rose garden. Imagine what an environment to work in!
The biggest gift of the Valentine's Day is actually always to remember that we should do something special and give something special firstly to ourselves and only then to our loved ones at all time no matter what is going on.
Because other than Valentine's Day there are other 364 days in the year to show your love, respect and caring to your loved ones and everyone you care about and maybe even more so through the act of love and kindness than things and stuff which you may most probably throw into garbage in the coming years.
Our wish for everyone is that make every day of your life count like a Valentine's Day where you wake up feeling lucky and blessed to have all who you have in your life and everything you have in your life. Even if you do not have a partner to love yet, you can share your love with your colleagues, your friends, your pets and even neighbors or anyone who is ready to receive it.
Lets not be limited only to one way of loving and caring. Let it be a constant flow of love year round. This is one of the cornerstones to build a conscious and sustainable love foundation for your life. Because once you are loving yourself and beaming out love, you become a true magnet for everyone and everything surrounding you, including abundance. That is a real jackpot indeed!
Many times, you hear people talking about money as the only form of abundance. It is not only money. Money is just one possible expression of abundance and helps to create more abundance if used wisely.
We call this “Conscious Abundance”.
For us, conscious abundance is everything and this is how we define it:
Conscious Abundance means, becoming aware of the existence of abundance, of feeling it in your life, and of connecting with it...
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