Trust. Try something New. And take up a little more room!

Well, she’s still here…and she is still running the show!

Yes, I’m talking about Maya, one of my two beloved, spoiled, gorgeous and adorable Maine Coon cats!

Over 19 months ago, Maya’s health was failing and we received the news that her condition was terminal. The vet said, we would be lucky if we got two more weeks of borrowed time, with our gorgeous furry gem. I was devastated beyond words.  She and her brother, Deezil are my fur-babies, the recipients of so much love and the giver’s of even more love in return. They are ten years old and I’ve literally spent a decade loving these two over-sized, overly-spoiled, adorable, almost-human, 15 and 20 pounds (respectively) of pure joy! You can read more about those heart-wrenching yet joyful moments here: Borrowed Time

However, sometimes life, God or the Universe have different plans! Sometimes, things happen that there’s no explanation for. Sometimes love wins and sometimes prayers are answered. This is one of those times!

I spoke with the vet countless times back then.  When Maya got sick and we were told she had, ‘maybe a few days’ and ‘two weeks, at best’, I asked a million questions back then – to myself, to God and to the vets.  ‘When?” “Why?” and “Is there anything we can do?” were just a few.  I asked the same questions for several months, with worry and anxiety ever-present in my mind and heart.  One day, I simply stopped asking.  It was awkward at first because I didn’t want to forget that we were on borrowed time and that our time with Maya may be limited but I also realized that living in that state was not healthy for any of us. Really, I think I stopped asking because I started trusting in what I saw and felt with Maya.  She is one feisty, brave, courageous, strong-willed, loyal and remarkable feline and she wasn’t going anywhere! She appeared to get stronger and stronger, cancer and all.

It makes me wonder, “Where else in my life could I stop asking…and start trusting?” How about you? What could happen if we started trusting a little more?

When Maya got sick, she declined rapidly to the point where I would have to pull her out from behind the washing machine where she was curled up, wasting away, and force her to eat warmed food and have a few treats.  I could feel her leaving us, even though, I felt somewhere inside that she didn’t really want to go.  That feeling was so real and powerful for me. She did not want to go.  She was not ready to go.  I knew I certainly was not ready for her to be going anywhere!

We took her to the vet and they kept her overnight to diagnose the problem, give her fluids and see what they could do.  The vet said, as night fell and I called to ask for an update, that she had cancer and there was nothing that could be done.  “She may have a few days left, at most.” The vet wanted to keep her overnight though and I agreed, reluctantly.  The next morning, when I called, a new vet was on shift and asked to keep Maya until noon and that, she was “going to try something new, just to see what might happen. Maybe we will get a week or two.”. I said, OK and was there at 12:00pm to pick her up.  The vet gave her a steroid injection, something not typically used to treat cancer, but thought it might jolt her immune system into responding.  “There was nothing to lose, everything to gain”, she said.

We spent those first couple weeks on a roller coaster of emotion.  Well, I did, but Maya seemed to perk up a bit and nearing the end of the two weeks, seemed more alive than she’d been in months.  I called the vet and asked what we should do now.  I think the vet was surprised she was still with us!  She said, bring her in again for another steroid shot.  And here we are today. This has been our journey for the past 19 months.  Maya goes to get a steroid shot every month and is thriving! She’s thriving and literally, running the show!

So often, I find myself silently giving thanks to the vet who came in on that morning shift, long ago when Maya was in her most fragile moments. Her action and idea to “try something new, to see what might happen” are nothing short of a miracle in my eyes along with the fact that it was her morning shift that day. I have no idea what would have happened if she had that day off!  What I do know is that –  in life, perhaps we could try something new, instead of doing what we’ve always done.

What could happen if we acted upon those flashes of insight – when a fleeting idea or thought passes through our minds – even though they may be contrary to our past experience or education? What sort of difference could that make in our own lives? In the lives of others? Heck – what sort of difference could that make in the world?

We’ll never know – unless we try!

What I know for sure, over the past 19 months, is that while life is fragile and fleeting, the human spirit, or perhaps, the feline spirit is powerful beyond measure! The power of love between beings, the will to survive (and thrive) and the miracles that can take place on any random morning are remarkable forces in our world.  Undeniable forces in my world. And in yours, too, I’m certain.

Believe in the power of love and that love can change the world! Believe in to the possibility that we all have a much greater strength and will to survive and thrive – we just have to tap into that power. And lastly, believe in the presence of miracles that can, and do, happen every day!

My greatest teachers are the loved ones in my life (including the 4-legged variety) along with books, experiences, conversations, observations and all sorts of influences.  One thing I have learned from Maya, especially this past year, is that we all could take up a little more room. 

Yes – you read that correctly! Take up a little more room!  Be brave, bold, courageous and demand what you deserve. The world around will cheer from the sidelines when you take up a little more room in life, let your light shine and express all the greatness within you! If the people around you are not cheering from the sidelines as you shine brightly, they’re not your people.  Go find your people! Surround yourself with those that encourage you to shine brighter than you ever imagined, and who make room for you to take more room in this amazing world!

Like in the above photos recently taken (mostly when I’m speaking/teaching virtual programs, the Zoom-bombers make an appearance and take up a lot of room:

  • Be comfortable – Inside yourself and where ever you find yourself. And find somewhere warm to sleep when ever possible – even if it’s on a laptop.
  • Lean on those you love. You have no idea how much they’ll appreciate your warmth and you never know…you just might be holding them up at the same time!
  • Live with wide-eyed gratitude, joy and enthusiasm for every moment.  Life is often a reflection of our own perceptions and expectations. What we experience in life is often a reflection of what we are giving out to the world.  Gratitude for each and every day we are alive can create a very different experience in life.

As 2022 continues to unfold, trust in yourself. Be willing to try something new. And take up a little more room! This could be our best year yet!  Like Maya, you’re here…so run your show! The world needs you…and it’s waiting!

Special thanks to Mission Creek Animal Hospital and Fairfield Animal Hospital for your expertise, kindness and for the miracles you perform every day. Special thanks to Magnolia, as well, from Better Bodies And Minds because Maya receives biomagnetic pair therapy treatments every couple of months from Magnolia and I’m certain that these treatments are helping Maya to thrive! Biomagnetic pair therapy is known to treat everything from cancer to Lyme and all sorts of bodily and emotional imbalances.  FInd out more about Magnolia and biomagnetic pair therapy here:

If you would like to make 2022 your best year yet, but are not sure how to do that, please inquire about a 2-call coaching infusion that will, most certainly, help make this year your very best yet!

Crystal Flaman is an international keynote speaker and social entrepreneur, inspiring you to discover your dreams and the difference you can create in the world. Anything is possible. Everything is possible. Believe in your dreams. Do what you love and be fearlessly you. 

If you would like to learn more information about this topic or to have Crystal share this message with your team, in person or on a virtual platform, please contact Crystal.  Thank you. 


Rave Reviews

“All I can say is WOW! Crystal Flaman you were on fire at the recent Vernon Women in Business Leadership Conference. Your ability to tie the conference theme into your inspirational messaging. You had the entire room captivated with the interactive activities you brought to help solidify your messages. As the MC, it is my job to mind the room and the time slot. Your expert storytelling had us all captivated from beginning to end. Thank you! I would highly recommend you for any event where the group is looking to elevate their team and individual performances.”
Faith Wood, Inspiring Minds Consulting Ltd, Owner
“Crystal was invited to kick-off and set the tone for our Professional Development conference. She delivered an interesting and engaging presentation, and inspired us through her passion and leadership, focusing on creating significance in our successes. Feedback after the session was incredibly positive, appreciating the relevance to both work and home life. Crystal even left us with parting gifts – a crystal prism and rings with encouraging words on them…and I still have them hanging at my desk as a reminder of what she taught us.  I would highly recommend Crystal to speak at your next engagement if you’re looking for a moving, honest and successful woman to ignite passion and inspiration for your team.”
Caren Leinwant, Green Shield Canada, Individual Business Services Manager
“I have known and worked with Crystal for the past 20 years.  She is an amazing person!  Crystal is a great speaker – engaging, humourous, and has the ability to appeal to many different audiences – young and old.   She is always prepared and willing to be flexible depending on the needs of her clients.  She has worked with many start up businesses over the years to provide information and guidance.   I would not hesitate to hire or refer Crystal for any speaking, mentoring or coaching opportunities for businesses in my community.  I know you won’t be disappointed.”
Wendy McCulloch, Community Futures Boundary, General Manager
“Crystal is creative, innovative, passionate, and inspirational. She planned special, memorable, and meaningful activities for our students that helped them to recognize their talents, boost their self-esteem, and prepare them for their transition to middle school. Both staff and students were so impressed by Crystal. The students were excited about the gifts they received and these special tokens will forever remind them of the lessons learned during their time with Crystal.  It truly was an honour to work with Crystal and experience all that she has to teach and offer. Our students are better, more confident people because of the time spent with Crystal.”
Mrs Lara Davies, Teacher, North Glenmore Elementary School
“Her physical and mental strength is only matched by the kindness of her heart. Crystal Flaman is a talented entrepreneur and athlete who has combined her passion for humanity with sport. Every opportunity is used to promote the well-being of her fellow man whether it be at home or abroad. A gifted speaker who can inspire you to tears, or better yet action, uses her magnetic energy to promote positive change. Crystal is hard working, committed and her tenacity is evident in many of her successful projects. Working with Crystal will be one of the best decisions you have ever made. “
Laura Thurnheer, Associate Dean, Okanagan College
“The Diva retreat was the most amazing week of my year. I am new to yoga, so was worried I wouldn’t be able to keep up but Amelie was an amazing instructor and paced the class to include all abilities. It was a beautiful way to start the day! Crystal guided the workshops in her bright and positive way. Each day we meet for a workshop in a safe and supportive environment, with great materials to take away. She created a warm and welcoming place to talk and share experiences. The group of ladies – new to me – became friends I am still in contact with.  We each were able to laugh, share and feel validated.

The location was gorgeous and we had ample free time to explore the village, head to the beach or hang out at the resort. I loved the balance of yoga, workshops and free time.

I would highly recommend the retreat to give yourself time to pause, reflect and refocus.”
Dianne Bondaroff, DIVA Retreat 2018 participant, Artist, Entrepreneur, Change Maker
“I have known Crystal for over 15 years as a colleague and good friend. She is a key component of the instruction team for the Leisure Development Course, a unique three-year professional development program for parks, recreation and community development personnel. Crystal’s presentations are always inspirational, sensitive, insightful and tailored to the needs of the respective students. She is one of the most passionate and enthusiastic individuals I have had the pleasure of working with and would not hesitate in recommending Crystal for whatever endeavor she wishes to undertake.”
Chris Nelson, Coordinator, Leisure Development Course
“I am not sure how to compact my gratitude for what DIVA Retreats really has done for me. My first DIVA Retreat was in 2014. I was seeking exactly what it stands for: Discover my Inner Voice and Adventure through body,  mind, and spirit. I was so blessed to have spent the week with such amazing women and it was the start of a great personal journey since then. My second experience in 2018 was equally amazing and an opportunity to hold the space for someone else’s transformation experience.  At the same time, in the end I was newly inspired again!  I wanted to give back and, instead, got so much more in return. I recommend this retreat for anyone. You are safe and instantly welcomed if you come alone or bring your BFF's. I loved it all! Yoga, laughing, learning, hiking, biking, creating, trying healthy foods, humanitarian contribution.... and most of all making connections with amazing women from all over Canada.  I don’t think there is another retreat like this anywhere that is this affordable.
Louise Sarauer, Administrative Professional, Saskatoon, SK
“I have known Crystal for over 10 years and in that time I have had the pleasure of being a participant in her workshops and presentations as well as being a fellow presenter. Her unwavering enthusiasm for her topics and her sincere, heartfelt messages for her participants, makes her presentations exciting and meaningful to her audiences. She uses her own life challenges and successes as the back-drop for her messages allowing her to use humour to engage and connect with those in the room. Often using a variety of props and techniques, participants are continuously engaged in her presentations. As a result, Crystal is an effective speaker, focused on sharing her passion and beliefs to motivate participants to take action in their own lives, towards their goals and aspirations.”
Deb Comfort, Facilities Supervisor, Dept. of Recreation, Parks and Culture, Red Deer, AB

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