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THE RECYCLED PIRATE

(Re)Creator of life | Rebel by cause

I want to show you my world

_MG_2133-Final 2I see them…

The posts, the comments, the headlines and the TV shows.

I hear them…

The stories, the chatter, the gossip. The complaint and the murmurs. The sighs, the shits and G#d%$#* &^#@##$@%^*#! (Censored for your own good.)

They don’t touch me, as much, no more. They certainly don’t reflect me. They don’t express the feelings the way they have in the past. They’re part of a world out there that’s important, but not all saying. I decide how I want to live. How much hatred I let in and how much love I spread. How I measure myself and how your measurment of me might reflect back on me. This is not an easy task, it is really a choice.

I was born before all this internet madness and we didn’t know as much as we get to know now. So I still don’t need to know everything that goes on around the world. I choose my knowledge, and what I share. I did that before the internet was the cool place to be. I stood on stages and proclaimed my words. I hung my poetry on message boards and shared the love. I saw the people looking and how it changed their day, so I took my fear and threw it away (over and over again.) I mailed, in real envelopes with real post stamps, my stories to pen friends. Hanged them on bathroom walls to share with whoever needed a word of love or wisdom. Even though I was scared and wanted to hide every time somebody approached me and gave me their feedback, I knew I had done wright..

I love to hide and be alone in my shade. To talk to myself and grow tall in thoughts and shrink in fears. I can conquer giants and fly on clouds. I can dig to the dark corners of my hell, burn worlds before I resurrect them myself. If I wished it… That is.

But I’ve chosen to let it all for what it was. I chose for a stronger me that would only build and no longer burn. I leveled the playing field, so I would have a more realistic view of the life we are living. I choose to connect or not at all. I prefer a real touch than a conversation in thin air.

I choose how I am seen and so should you. I don’t want to be remembered for a complaint, or for the years I watched a cold war going on in my mind. I don’t want to be reminded of all the dead nor living. Only the memories they left behind. I want to see the world for what I can hold, touch, grasp. I am the here and now. I am what I give. I am what I allow to receive.

I live in the world that I can share and it is magic. I see creations. People standing and applauding. I see people loving and caring. I feel people. They want to share more but they are lost in a false sense of life. There are no right answers other than the right questions, and those make you challenge you.

I show you this in my world because I make that choice.

I show you my world to help us each choose (y)ours.

Let’s Connect:

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Let me help you recycle your life. Life Awareness & Innovations is a program based to look at your needs and which innovations you need.

Music of Choice: Joss Stone – The Answer

Find your strength

Fight for peace

There’s a light

In your release

Let love win

Just give in

The next is bright

So you can see…

The answer

Let’s Connect

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Photo Credit: Leonid Antonia Photography

Thoughts go high-speed through my brain, my body feels excited and then there is always that damn confusion. The fear of always needing to do more. To not be doing enough. To fail. Or to succeed, and then the need to go deeper, be better. Realistically, I know it’s just an urge. The need that I need to connect.

This blog could’ve been named “The Need…” But it isn’t the need, it is the matter how we connect so therefore “Let’s Connect.”

I write these blogs so I will read for myself that I am still alive. That I am growing into the man I want to become. I want to write these blogs because we all go through emotional roller coasters, yet we don’t share it enough. We all feel the doubts, we deal with these anxiety filled moments with barely time to acknowledge them. So we post a picture of our delicious food, we make up that smile and sign it off with #TheGoodLife. We slip into aids, like pills to help us ease down. But these are only temporary solutions and we grow accustomed to the “cure.” And we fail to connect.

I spend most of my life hiding. As soon as things got serious I would scare away instead of engage. Needed to man up? I would shrink so small I couldn’t find myself. I cried in the mirror because that dude I was looking at just couldn’t stand up like the man I felt I wanted to be. Standing in front of a group or a classroom was no issue, but dealing with the feelings inside me brought me down on my knees, over and over again.

Standing tall became an exercise. A personal method. When I was home alone, cooking or folding laundry. Straighten those shoulders, breathe deep into my stomach, exhaling putting it all out there. It was a process, a learning school for myself. I needed to learn to balance myself. Living with a disability that threw me physically off balance, I had to find the mental balance to strain the physical one and in that process I discovered my spiritual one.

I’m not beating my chest with a jungle roar, that’s just not my style (in public, that is…*insert smiley face here*.) However, I do slap my own ass and say “good boy!” (Not in public either, that would be too much frowned upon.) For I know how far I’ve come. I know what I aim for and I am always closing that gap to what once was, and what once will be. I’m mighty proud of what I discovered as I truly connected. Let me tell you a little bit of that secret.

The secret is in the smallest things.
Do you appreciate the tiniest accomplishments? Those almost unnotable accomplishments?
Many of them are when and how you start your day. Many of them are simply how you stand up for and to yourself. Many are just ways to create an oversight of what you have in your life.

For example:
Do you make your bed?
Pour yourself a glass of water?
Brush your teeth in a hurry, or with intent?
Do you look in the mirror and smile at yourself?
Do you prepare some breakfast that will fuel you?
Do you like the first taste of food you put in your mouth?

I did the steps, took the notes and I am sharing, for you to see.
“Here I am. Human.” I aim to serve and to make life real!
I’m not perfect, I just aim to be the best I can be with what I have this day.

Do you embrace your strengths? Your weakness? You femininity? Your masculinity? Or do you force yourself in a suite of accordance and hope you’ll get through your day?

Living with a physical disability has taught me that I can want many things, but if I don’t fully appreciate what I’m doing, my next step might not be as fun. Not as fully engaged. So I connect with myself, it is a choice to make me connect with my day. I have days that I’m weak or in pain, and I have days I’m so strong I think I can conquer the world. Yet everyday, I get to push the best out of me. Everyday I have a smile. Every day I get to learn and most days I get to teach. For what we have in ourselves is a force that many times goes unrecognized in a dessert of emotions that covers us. I help people uncover that.

For connecting and learn more, mail me at therecycledpirate@gmail.com and just maybe you can learn to accept the feelings that worry you. Walk with them instead of running away.

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Let me help you recycle your life.
Life Awareness & Innovations is a program based to look at your life and which innovations you need.

Music of Choice: U2 – One

Is it getting better
Or do you feel the same
Will it make it easier on you now
You got someone to blame
You say…

One love
One life
When it’s one need
In the night
One love
We get to share it
Leaves you baby if you
Don’t care for it

Did I fail? 5 years of pain.

Andy

Did I fail?

It’s been five years…

It’s been more than just that, years. But counting the years, one, two, three, four, five, is easier to explain and to grasp with so much that has happened and so much that still goes on. It has been a mental rollercoaster. Not to mention the body tumbling part.
This isn’t something I can easily brush off. Nor would I want to, out of respect for the ones involved. Five years of waking with pain daily. Five years of so many questions, and just as many answers.

May 19th. 2012.

Someone closed her eyes in my arms to never open them again. Of everything I could’ve gone through, that was the last thing I would ever expect to happen.
Now I had to accept it.

I made the promise of life and living is what I did. But was it enough so far? Did I give it my best shot?

So many things happened. From learning to walk, to learning to fall and stand back up. Sticking plastic tubes in my body to empty my bladder, using pills and needles to relax my muscles. Falling again, standing up, accepting the tears, the loss. Breaking a toe, committing to 100 push-ups for 100 days. Growing stronger. Growing wiser. Day by day. Learning to be tough but also learning to be an empath.
Making friends, opening up while I just wanted to hide in shame. Study while I was resting, talking when I was sad, laughing when I was glad. Learning to be vulnerable. Learning to be ok with who I was.

I learned to share and to accept. Let go of limitations, shame, pain, loss, lack… Everything that was holding me back. The beauty comes from within when you embrace the lack of abundance to create it from this heartfelt feeling.

Five years of giving it my all to deserve the right to live and to love. For myself. For my past. For the person who would never be there to clean up the mess I felt I was stuck in for so many years. I feel I succeeded, yet I lost. As you accomplish your dreams, new ones are being build. It’s called evolution, a form of survival and those feelings are strong in us. And nothing is ever enough.

I succeeded everything I set my mind to, personal, business, family, and even love. But not my body. Not my body…

The thing I need the most to complete my dreams, to help others, that thing just keeps breaking down. And I have accepted, this last part might not be fixable. What I also accepted is that it is a gift to keep me grounded, to make me grow beyond my body. To help others see beyond limitations.

I have been given an opportunity. And it is not up to me to decide if I fail or if I succeed. It is up to me to wake up and try every day again to take it another step further.
To help one more person.
To share one more story.
To create one more smile.

I have become a recycler of life. A creator of opportunities. I’ve become a tool for others to find balance and purpose in their lives.

Have I failed? No. I am still learning how to succeed.

I keep going on. One more time.

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Music of Choice: Daft Punk – One More Time

One more time

We’re gonna celebrate

Oh yeah, all right

Don’t stop the dancing

A deep intimate connection

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I have this deep intimate connection with myself. 

It is deeper than touch and filled with an intense fulfilling emotion. It is a strength covering a core of vulnerability. It would almost feel unreal, if I didn’t experience it myself.

It is almost five years ago that I saw someone close her eyes for ever in my arms and I made her a promise:

“I will live for the both of us.”

This initiated a transformation that I am still part of. I am no saint, nor a hero. I’m far from perfect, actually. And I’m not afraid to confront myself. I am a simple boy full of insecurities that had to grow into a man in a split second. I had to stumble, literally, over hurdles to become who I am. I set a standard and raised it every time it was met. 

I could always do one more step? On more smile? Right? What I held back for years, exploded into a force that propels me forward, taking life as it comes. Revolving, always revolving and no way to be stopped.

I didn’t know for sure till I tried. I wrote it down, I cried it in paper and defined who I was. Who I wanted to be. This time for real. I had to serve and create this thing bigger than me. I promised her! And I urged myself to be patient. 

“Discover your core. Work harder. Rest longer. Learn more.”

And I trusted myself as I had never done before. And I let it go…

In four years, I learned to walk, started a business with nothing but some chump change and build a life I never thought was possible. Four years I worked towards the moment and the moment said:

“Just a little bit more.”

I was living what I had promised her. No guilt, no blame, no judgement. Just this enormous spiritual garden where I can walk around and pick the feelings that I need and water the ones that should grow. I harvest what is ripe and give to the world what I know.

Dealing with depression, pain, loss, anxiety and insecurities has been a part of my past. And because of that it will be part of my future. Although I have made an alternative choice. In my new life, I have this deep intimate connection with myself. I feel life, I smell life and I see life in a brighter light than I imagined. I focus myself to be aware of my surroundings, inherently seeing that everything is free. I feel the love that I give and that I may receive. Therefore I am free, I have found a way to share this deep passionate feeling that I had inside me all these years.

I am mine, but my gift to you, is yours to keep.

For a more information contact me:

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Music of Choice: Pearl Jam – Garden

I don’t question
our existence
I just question
our modern needs

I will walk…with my hands bound
I will walk…with my face blood
I will walk…with my shadow flag
into your garden
garden of stone

after all is done
we’re still alone
I won’t be taken
yet I’ll go…

Become your own creator

We are afraid.

We are so afraid!

We are afraid of being judged. We are afraid of being hurt. We are afraid to lose. We are afraid of shame. We are afraid of being who we can truly be because fear is easier than to stand for what we really believe.

We prefer to quote some mystic words than to bare our soul. We prefer to read the knowledge of the past than to discover the future for ourselves.

Do you see yourself? The real you? The one that loves? The one that has dealt with loss? The one that lies, cheats and steals? The one that hides the truth instead of seeking a solution? Do you realize how much you’ve been hurt and how much pain you have caused? Do you accept the doubts and turn them into truths?

Do you look in the mirror and recognize the face you’ve seen over the years? Do you love that person internally? Eternally? Or can you be honest and say:

“Nah, not today”

Do you dare to say that you’ve been stupid or dumb? That you’ve been harsh and wrong? That you’ve been rash and deserved the burn?

Once you’ve accept all that, that lesser side of you. The faulty bits and pieces? You can bolt them. That’s where you can build again. That’s where you can strengthen your foundation and clean the mess surrounding it. You can not start over. Sorry to say, but the layers that have been there for years can not be forgotten. But… They can be accepted and reconstructed.

It’s not an easy task and it takes a lot of commitment. But the truth is, if you invest in you, you make your world a better place. Your future, your destiny, your peace of mind. Only than can you love all that is, for what it’s truly worth. You are a beautiful human being.

Now let go of one fear, to start with. And become your own creator!

Do you want help? Contact me:

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Music of Choice: Pearl Jam – All those yesterdays

Don’t you think you’ve done enough?
Oh, don’t you think you’ve got enough, well maybe.
You don’t think there’s time to stop
There’s time enough for you to lay your head down, tonight, tonight

Let it wash away
All those yesterdays

What are you running from?
Taking pills to get along
Creating walls to call your own
So no one catches you drifting off and
Doing all the things that we all do

What’s with the Pirate?

The most asked question “What’s with the Pirate?” is the most unanswered one because no one gets what it really is. It is not to others to understand, yet, here I go explaining myself…

No, not me, but why I use the “Pirate.” People see the “funny” of it, however what most don’t seem to get  is what is meant with the “Recycled” in front of it and the combination of three unifying words. They don’t define me. Nothing can. It is just a tool for recognition so our human minds can somewhat understand.

It is all in the shade of the words. As a, somewhat, poet with a mystical twist and love for symbolism it took me a journey of two years to find something I would carry. A definition, but one that I crafted. The, as in, The Recycled Pirate, is for “I am.” I am just as you, one of a kind. The one of a Kind! For the other two words, well let’s sit down and go down memory lane.

The Pirate has stuck with me since my childhood. My mom used to buy me tons of books as a kid. If there is something she has spoiled me with, it was books. One of them, a childhood favorite. was a birthday gift about two boys being stranded (many centuries ago) in Hispaniola and becoming Buccaneer’s to survive. This has always stuck with me since I came from an island where I felt stranded, and misunderstood. Too many times I heard what I should’ve done instead of supported what I could’ve become. I was called a rebel and “up to no good.” While all that was of the matter was that “they” just didn’t understood.

Pirates are non conformist. Many of them have a bad name. And looking back at history, the time they lived in is not well-known for gentle behavior. However, many pirates joined a crew as means of survival and breaking with the status quo. They were free yet part of a community. And that was what I want, be together, but be who you want to be. So I joined many crews over the years.

For as long as I can remember I cared for others and how we are treated. To hear one thing while something else was done was just wrong and because I refused to live by these rules, “they” called me a rebel. The times that it was explained to me went against my logic. I treated everyone with the same respect they treat me, or the lack of it.

I decided early on, I was going to do things differently. And so I did…

It took a long journey and literally had to cross seas to get where I want. Yet, it wasn’t until that same sea nearly cost my life that I realized what my life was about.

I HAD TO CHANGE COURSE.

I HAD TO RECYCLE LIFE!

I gave life second chances, in all its forms, physical, mental, material and spiritual. As you read in many of my blogs I’m not your regular rebel. I’m a warrior with a cause. Life is love, and love is what it’s all about. I am willing to die for it!

I love life for all its aspects but I have no illusions that I’m in control. I take it as it comes and give it as it goes. I am patient with myself as I am with my surroundings. I am loving to others as long as they are willing to love themselves.

I don’t look for the easy way out but for the best way to create opportunities to grow me and my community.

My life was a waste. Literally. For many years I was ruled by cigarettes, drugs, alcohol, sex, it was all so good but none of it brought me the life I desired. Insecurities, fear and anxiety destroyed hopes and dreams. “They” said I was “up to no good.” I was a mess till I lost my life. I didn’t die. I could still breathe, but everything else died in front of me…

Not being able to move. Being pushed in a bed from one room to another. Being fed and cleaned by people I never met. Waiting for any visitor to brighten my day. I realized I had to take this life, and recycle it. Take everything bad and use it for good. Take every doubt and use it to build trust. To take every weakness and to build strength. Fearless like a Pirate I tied a rope to my bed and pulled myself up for I was ready for one more fight!

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Bonaire, May 2012. Picture by my mother, Caresse Victoria.

It started with gaining physical strength that I needed to be able to care for myself. The confidence came with it. Study my patterns. Improve my skills. Gaining control over my thoughts by simply accepting I had lost, and now I had everything to gain. I changed my diet and learned to breathe. It meant learning a whole new me. A whole new lifestyle. Letting go of all the limiting thoughts that were passed on to me and pirateer my future. Refuse the wheelchair, refuse the diapers, refuse being helpless! Stand tall, straighten your back, breathe deep and exhale it all out.

As a yoga practitioner, a modern man who isn’t afraid to love, to show emotions and vulnerability many times I get asked “Pirate? Really?” And my reply is simple:

I am the man who changed life when life changed me. I am a rebel with a cause, a child at heart, and a lover of life. I am the man that will change my world with my own two hands and the will of my mind.

I am The Recycled Pirate!
And I, recycle life.

For more information contact:

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Music of Choice: Tracy ChapmanBorn to Fight

They’re tryin’ to dig into my soul
And take away the spirit of my god
They’re tryin’ to take control
And monitor my every thought

I won’t let down my guard
And I was born to fight
I ain’t been knocked down yet
I was born to fight
I’m the surest bet

There ain’t no man no woman
No beast alive that can beat me
‘Cause I’m born to fight

I will always remain me

I am not afraid to show myself. I never was…

However, I was taught to fear others and the words they might speak. The thoughts they might think. But my inner struggle said: “I am not responsible for what they create in their brain.” So I let go of those demons and lived as much as I could live.

I have lived so hard and lost so much that I can fill books with adventures. When in Spain running from the police. In Germany I raved the night away. Belgium I saw passing through to too many stories I can tell. And in France, lost in the 18th arrondissement, befriended a hooker and found my way out. I sat in trains and fell in love with mountains and forests that I would never see again. I have seen more countries than I can remember. I lived in three, traveled through more. I ate their food and learned their customs. I paid respect and got served more. I kissed a stranger and we watched each other disappear in the distance. It was all in the cycle of life before I chose this place for its starry skies.

I have won hearts and saw many slip and disappear. I have danced, soaking wet, in the rain. I made love on top of a mountain and dived the deep ocean. I sat on the bottom, looked up and saw just one shimmering light. I felt alive yet knew death was around the corner.
I laughed so much my belly hurt for days. I cried so many tears I thought I would dry and life would be the remains of a desert oasis.

I saw a baby come out her mother’s womb, felt the feelings of a father and in that same lifetime, I saw a life go lost in my arms. In all that happened in this life I always chose to love. I choose to share for I feel we are hiding afraid to be hurt, while hurting ourselves. I prefered to feel the pain than not have tried.

With all those ups and downs, the waves and the turning of the tide, I chose me. It’s not for you to understand…

But I always remained me!

For more information:

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Music of Choice: Pearl Jam – Release me

I see the world
Feel the chill
Which way to go
Windowsill
I see the words
On a rocking horse of time
I see the birds in the rain

Oh dear dad
Can you see me now
I am myself
Like you somehow
I’ll ride the wave
Where it takes me
I’ll hold the pain
Release me

Grow, from a boy into a man

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I have written for most of my life. The memories of the first words are still there. It all started someday a long long time ago, about when I was twelve. Walking home words lingered in my head. It was about my grandmother, welita, how I was afraid of losing her but instead the words have been lost in time and time took her eventually too.

I remember they were about my love for her and the fear of loss. Those two topics have created most of my teenage scriptures. They were poems and short stories that most couldn’t understand. They were (an attempt to be artistic) and underappreciated, like a teenage boy’s life. They were filled with doubt. Doubts if they were worth the read, worth the share and most of all worth the time.

“Was I worth anything at all?

The candles that melted, smoke that lingered and the wine that has accompanied the adolescents didn’t bring much good. They were a whirlwind of emotions that I never understood. Why, was I thinking this? Why, was I feeling so much? Why, was I the only one?

I wasn’t. As I discovered the internet, the world wide web discovered me. I resisted. I embraced. I got chewed up and spit out. I took my distance and lost track of time. I wandered back and some things were just like the first time. I discovered worlds, wrote stories, half books, but none could fill this empty heart of mine.

I turned 30, and a decade later the 3 turned into 4. I never wrote as that young boy anymore, but here I sit writing it all down. That young boy, got lost, found his way, wanted to die, survived another day, grew more than he ever could imagined and let it all slip away.

That young boy, lost his life. But never his appetite. So here, yes it is I. I lost my ways, and with that, forgot the words. I discovered myself, a beast deep inside. I lingered the thoughts and with a slow recover, here I am, laying it all down.

The boy is a man. The fear is still there, but now there is fuel to discover more. To be deeper in myself. To give more, share more and show the world what can be.

Apparently, all you have to be, is just you, and grow from a boy into a man.

Music of Choice: Bronski Beat – Smalltown Boy

“Smalltown Boy”

Cry, boy, cry, boy, cry

Cry, boy, cry

You leave in the morning with everything you own in a little black case

Alone on a platform, the wind and the rain on a sad and lonely face

Mother will never understand why you had to leave
But the answers you seek will never be found at home
The love that you need will never be found at home

Run away, turn away, run away, turn away, run away
Run away, turn away, run away, turn away, run away

Pushed around and kicked around, always a lonely boy
You were the one that they’d talk about around town as they put you down

And as hard as they would try they’d hurt to make you cry
But you never cried to them, just to your soul
No, you never cried to them, just to your soul

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She still tells me to let go…

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I have loved more than I ever been loved. Yet I broke more hearts than mine was broken. Mine was, and is still, bruised and sore. It aches but it keeps wanting more. I tried to turn it off but I only managed to turn it down.

I am ok, with this, for now. I know nobody sets out on purpose to break another heart. I never have. I set out to please, to conquer, to heal or to cover. I tried to protect and failed and became the aggressor. I am sorry…

I was confused and I am still now. The difference with then and now, is that I’m not mistaking my love, I have learned it is true. I yearned for more since I was a small boy and set out to give what I could, for what I could not receive.

After 40 years I conclude, no one receives as deep as I do, for no one gives as hard as I can. That is my gift.

Now that might sound selfish, and it almost is, weren’t it for the fact that I know now, when I looked death in the eyes, that I would have preferred to die with her than return without her. I learned there and then that my heart was just.

In my beloved memory she still tells me to let go… 

So I’m letting you go now.

Thank you for teaching me that my love was so pure that it changed your life, so you could let go too.

Music of choice: Bette Midler – The Rose

“The Rose”

Some say love, it is a river
That drowns the tender reed.
Some say love, it is a razor
That leaves your soul to bleed.
Some say love, it is a hunger,
An endless aching need.
I say love, it is a flower,
And you its only seed.

For more information:

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