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THE RECYCLED PIRATE

(Re)Creator of life | Rebel by cause

Month

November 2015

About that daily routine

My daily routine seems to be something that many people wonder about. To some it’s a miraculous thing, to others a confirmation of what they are trying to accomplish. For me it’s that “thing” that comes back in almost every blog; Finding balance.

I don’t believe in doing one thing over and over again. You will have to if you really want to become good at something, but in a healthy manner. If you do the same work/training everyday your mind would get bored. Your body will get used to it, and instead of gaining control you would just slip into some mental coma. Yet, I do have a daily routine as many expected. Balance can come in many variations. I shift and juggle with what I want and have to do to find a balance to get the utmost out of my day. Everyday, the whole day. It’s my game and I always win. (Well, almost always because if I lose I learned why I didn’t win, so I still win! #PirateRules.) My drive, however, to get as much done on a daily basis is based on one simple principle:


Nemo vir est qui mundum non reddat meliorem.

It is a quote from my favorite movie, Kingdom of Heaven. Wikipedia says it’s from a Latin inscription and means: What man is a man who does not make the world better? (It’s my second favorite quote ever.) And this drives me in every way, every day. As I have explained in prior blogs, for me to be able to do what I need to do and be as physically strong as possible, my mind has to be clear of all clutter and of course, my body well rested. In my recovery process I developed a method that helps me. So let’s go through my schedule that I developed in 3,5 years of trial and error. (You can fill -ish behind everything because I believe you need to stay flexible to  create accomplishments.)


Muhammad Ali6.00 Alarm (Snooze, curse, sighs, big gulp of water)
7.00 Yoga (After copious amount of water in my face and with brushed teeth)
8.00 Breakfast (And coffee!)
9.00 Workshop (Create crap/craft)
12.00 Gym (Balance/Strength/Endurance training)

13.00 Lunch (Balanced warm meal)
14.00 Rest (Nap time)
16.00 Office (Checking mail while I make love to coffee)
17.00 Workshop (Create crap/craft)

This is my general day. It’s not planned to the minute and some days I sit more behind a computer doing my accounting, setting up or managing social media accounts for clients (FDDK, Share2Uplift, Twin Divers) or manage my own social media accounts, planning and of course lots and lots of research and learning. I’m an average student but an eager learner. During rehab, one of my therapists said: “You have a good brain. You’ll be fine as long as you keep developing it.” So that’s what I did and then some…

My yoga in the morning is to wake up my muscles and my nerves, to let them know “the world is awake and we need you.” In the meanwhile, I smell the scent of coffee and just that makes me smile. If I have to wash clothes I’ll throw them in as soon as I put my love potion (coffee) brewing and before yoga so by the time I get my breakfast in my tummy I’m ready for the fresh smell of just washed clothes. I chose a soap that’s good to the environment and makes me happy. (The smell and my good environmental choice, just to be clear.) Everything is synchronized in improving my next step. My productivity. My sense of accomplishment. I hide tons of rewards during (all) my daily sessions so I’ll always look forward to the next moment.

There is struggle though! Not everything is happiness and Disney-ish. I’m secretly lazy and many times I don’t want to do physical exercises. So I set small targets to keep me motivated, like watering my plants. Yes, watering flowers! (How Pirate-ish, isn’t it?) By walking with the full buckets of water through my yard I’m warming my body, train my balance and my mind and I immediately feel a sense of accomplishment and that small reward makes me want to do more. (Also the birds, bees and my dogs make it really Disney -ish like, so I smile even more.) Next, I hang on the bars of our solid steel drying frame to stretch my spine, muscles and nerves and see the beautiful table mountain. This is where I mostly start doing chin ups, pull ups, push ups, or any other ups fantasizing how amazing it would be to climb that mountain. (I still haven’t, so it’s on my bucket list.)

wpid-img_20151124_123138-01.jpeg
Even priming them was a training. I wasn’t allowed to do chin ups until I made the bars shine again.

In between I spray paint my candle holders, pet my dogs, make necessary calls, send out positive messages and do stretching and breathing exercises. Again rewarding myself with small accomplishments and motivating myself with the next one.

When you plan too much of your day, you create a mountain that you can’t look over and you’re setting yourself up for a disadvantage and that can easily become a failure. By creating a small hill I can already see what I’m going to climb next. If I accomplish getting over the first hill. “Stretching out your comfort zone” I call it. I dislike phone calls so much I would almost say “hate” but I “hate” using the word “hate.” Negativity attracts negativity and positivity boasts creativity and productivity extends every comfort zone you have, so we’ll leave that word behind. Since my body doesn’t allow me a comfort zone, I create one mentally. Over and over during the day. This is what I mean when I write about #growstronger on my Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

IMG_2517Create a comfort zone outside of your comfort zone, create a bridge that allows you to walk that difference. Create opportunity. Create a mental and physical image of what you want to do and do the smallest step to see if you can achieve that in one day. Before you know, you have a balanced schedule like I own. I know it may seem easy for me to say, but find a way to make it easy for you. I did, through physical pain and the loss of a dear life.

In case you didn’t know… Hi, I’m Andy. I am a creative instigator. I create solutions.



My hands are tied, my body bruised
She’s got me with
Nothing to win and
Nothing left to lose

Frequently Answered Questions – FAQ #1

Yes I know, it should be Frequently Asked Questions, but I’m a pirate, whatcha gonna do ’bout it?

Anyways, this time I thought I give answers to questions I hear a lot. The most common questions are about my physique and although I wrote a blog about it, it keeps changing so much I can’t even keep track of it sometimes. Since my birthday is coming up next Saturday let’s make this a special blog and let’s start the first FAQ with the most common question asked:

Are you always in pain?

Yes, although, discomfort would be more the word to use here. I have pain on a daily basis but not constantly. It’s like playing with a light switch. It comes and goes during the day, only you don’t know when, where or how the light will go on. (It’s a real fun game!) There is always a sense of discomfort due to nerve damage and the most is while sitting (groin) or standing (sciatica.) I kind of have to move the whole time or find a balance between sitting, standing and lying down.

The results are several sensations, actually after analyzing it the last two years I could say two pains with a variety of sensations.

Pain 1: From my spine through my left leg it’s the sciatica. This results in discomfort and pain in the hip joint, hamstring, stiffness in the ankle.

Pain 2: Right groin. What the problem is exactly we don’t know but after various therapist and doctors, doctor El Hage helped me relief myself of the most part of the pain. It is a stuck nerve, I can clearly feel it at certain moments. Overlapping muscles and an infection also have had their fair share in keeping me in my bed for days. For the last 2 months it’s seems bearable thanks to Body Stress Relief and therapist Bjorn van de Ree. I still feel room for improvement and I keep working on this area by daily yoga exercises.

Plasma-Ball
A plasma globe or plasma lamp (also called plasma ball, dome, sphere, tube or orb, depending on shape)

To complete this all I have a consistent urge to go to the bathroom and when I’m touched on certain places it’s like touching a plasma ball but with nerves.

Why do you still walk with the cane?
I have temporally unbalances. These happen by a sort of short circuit in my nervous system. They feel like electrical shocks that can weaken me for a second. (This makes it seem like I’m drunk, but that’s only after 10.00 am.) These short moments have made me trip, fall and even break a toe (I still managed to finish my 100 days of 100 push ups, so no excuses! It was an epiphany to, or give up and be a cry baby, or show how bad ass I wanted to be… I still cried a little though…)

I mostly walk with my cane so I won’t scare people as I pass by and suddenly make a unbalanced move. Also, when walking or standing for longer periods of time it helps me with pain relief in my back and maintain a more healthy balance.

It also comes in handy when people try to steal my cookies! (Or chocolate cake!)

How often do you do yoga?
Every day! Well, almost every day. (Since March this year (2015) I really started doing it every day.) I have had some days that I just didn’t have the time because I had to rush to an early doctor’s appointment (my body is really stiff early in the morning) and twice because my body (brain!) just couldn’t (didn’t want to.) Lately I’m even more fanatic and I do poses through the day, during my work or between my strength training. It keeps me flexible, in tone (body and mind) and it helps controlling (or awaken) the nerve itches and burns. It also feels amazing to be able to control my body and to feel the progress in my balance.

Why do you train so hard?
I’ve heard some misconceptions from people. That I want to become big, muscled, toned but none of it is true. The most simple and honest answer I can give you? I want to be the best I can be! Body and mind. I use my body to control my mind and my mind to control my body. Some moments you need to shut up and push through and others you have to sit still and accept. I found a healthy balance that is always in an imbalance that I have to correct by doing strength or endurance training, yoga or just the most pure of all exercises, meditation.

I do yoga seven days a week. Strength training depending on how my body feels and reacts but 3 to 5 times a week if I’m able. I build a parkour around my workplace with equipment so I can work, train and play simultaneously.

Where do you get your motivation?
I am my motivation. If I can’t motivate me for myself for who else should I do it? What are my options? Work hard and you’ll get what you wish for, that’s my motivation. And the dreams I build being in the rehabilitation clinic. Seeing people who were less fortunate as me made me step up my game to be able to help them. So I help myself so I can help them. It started by fixing the tables for other patients in the clinic, making sure I was on time at the therapy session and creating a smile when I saw some of my fellow patients down. I committed myself to this goal and that’s why I started 2ndLife Curaçao. I can only accomplish my goal if I am as strong as possible. Balanced between the mind, heart and body.

My goal is to have the means to visit the rehabilitation clinic regularly and bring hope and joy to the people that are struggling. With 2ndLife Curacao I aim to even create or offer a job or some sort of re-education. My business started so I can help myself and them, and that vision is clear in my dreams. Eventually I want to have a workshop filled with inspiring and inspired people, so we can inspire a whole island with what’s possible, if you put your mind to it.

Do you consider yourself a role model?

No! Yes… I have to be…? I don’t want to but do I love to be one? It’s double, I don’t think I should be a role model. I’m too stubborn, too rough of a diamond, but heck, maybe that’s exactly
what’s needed. I noticed people admiring what I did (do) and I adjusted myself to that role. I still am. It’s not an easy role and the responsibility doesn’t always feel as something I want to carry.
But the cards are dealt, I’m playing a part that seems to be considered a role model. If I want to see the change I have envisioned I need walk upfront.

Just roll with it…

7A

Music of choice: Bob Marley – Get Up, Stand Up

You see, most people think great God will come from the sky

Take away everything and make everybody feel high

But if you know what life is worth, you would look for yours on earth

Now you see the light, stand up for your right

Curaçao; There where I was born

 

1000-awesome-things-about-curacao
www.facebook.com/1000awesomethingsaboutcuracao

1000 Awesome Things About Curacao logo by Marc C. P. Castillo

 

Curaçao. There where I was born.

There where the ground is too hard to grow your roots, but once you do they can never be unrooted.

There where there is always plenty of food.
Where a neighborhood raises a child, knows your secrets and acts like they don’t.

There where it’s so small you can travel it in a day, but get lost for weeks.
Where the beaches are made by nature and the rocks breathe the history of our magic.
There is even a place where you can hear a giant breathe…

Curaçao1836“Curaçao 1836”

by R.F./van Raders, Dl. Veelwaard jr. – University of Amsterdam Library. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons

It’s an island full of diversity that sometimes unifies us, while other days it divides.
Our history, build on salt and blood.
A mix of Jewish ancestry, European adventurers and African diaspora that makes us proud while it still hurts.

We are an island emancipating. Released from a colonialism that blew over the west long after it was (supposed to be) gone.
We are a young nation with a future so bright as our sun, but as dark as our oceans for we are afraid of what we are incapable of.

Indians and piratesKings and queens.

We’ve had them all. We have a history that reads like a book.

We look forward to your visit but not yet sure of what we have to offer.

We are old, we are new, we are (at least) 42 nations combined on a special kind of rock.

Discover us, as we discover you.

 

Read more about Curacao:
Curacao Tourism Board
1000 Awesome Things About Curacao
Curacao Wiki
History Curacao
Cultures of Curacao
Caribbean; A novel by James A. Michener

Music of choice: Levi SilvanieAmi ta Korsou (I am Curacao)

#Superando

In April 2015 Levi Silvanie released a new single Superando accompanied with his most radical video clip yet. inspired by and featuring Alton Paas in a more than impressive way. The word superando was made common by Alton Paas and the Alton Paas Foundation to promote awareness and gain funds for spinal cord injuries (on his island Curacao) and his treatment abroad. In a collaboration Levi Silvanie found the inspiration to write another hit single and hard-hitting video clip with the help of some friends. Colombian film maker Octavio David Curiel and Bonairian Giovanni Giribaldie a.k.a. Zoinx (a.k.a. the rapping barber) they managed to bring a message across and a movement to life.

Alton Paas with in the back Zoinx
Alton Paas with in the back Zoinx

“To overcome your disabilities you need to use your abilities.”

With that in mind Levi Silvanie and his team produced a documentary concert in Teatro Luna Blou to release his new video clip. With their first performance immediately blowing away the visitors, participants and critics with a dramatic combination of audio and visuals. To start and finish this theater concert/show with speeches from Andy Kirchner (yes, it is I) and Alton Paas. Both dealing with our physical disabilities in our own special way and bringing that message forth.

We are #Superando!

Superando explanation:

Papiamentu:
Supera bo disabilitat ku bo abilitat.

English:
Overcoming your disability with your ability.

Nederlands:
Het overkomen van handicaps met je vaardigheden.

Superando is grew into a larger movement by bringing people together and fight adversities and connect diversities. It’s Levi Silvanie’s way of overcoming himself, and as spread his message over the world;

Overcome your disabilities and have the ability to become whoever you are #GsMeMiss!

Not only am I proud and honored to be allowed to be part of this project and movement, it has been a major inspiration to start writing my story as The Recycled Pirate as to partake in JCI IOBA’s Aspiring Creative Young Entrepreneur Award program (read more here *click click* and here *click click*)

I am just simply me, but together we are simply strong!

Together we can move a world!

Join my brother,

be #GsMeMiss!


#GsMeMiss | The translation:

Djis Mi Mes -‘Simply Me’

In the tram on my way to work
I look out the window and see how my life progressed
Traveling through the streets of my dreams
The place where I longed to be
with every tone out of my mouth
and string of my guitar
I can express

I would not waste a day on earth,
without giving it my best
I do not want to waste a day on earth
with regret

In a world full of evil, I want to be good
I want to be the right thing amongst the wrong
In a world full of evil, I want to be good
In any way, I want to be simply me

When I look in the mirror and see me
I see what others see of me
Nobody is perfect until they are not
That makes me who I am
Do not worry about what you do not have
Do what you can and give it your best
Believe in you with time your time will come

I would not waste a day on earth,
without giving it my best
I do not want to waste a day on earth
with regret

In a world full of evil, I want to be good
I want to be the right thing amongst the wrong
In a world full of evil, I want to be good
In any way, I want to be simply me

2015 04 13 Antiliaans Dagblad - Superando JPEG Edit 2
Antiliaans Dagblad – Superando – April 13 2015

Follow the movement on Facebook:
Levi Silvanie

Fundashon Alton Paas

The Recycled Pirate

2ndLife Curacao

Curaçao. Almost a decade on island time.

October 30th, it was nine years (9, that’s almost 10, right?) Nine years since I left the cold Dutch winters behind. And I promise you, I haven’t missed them since. Spring was my favorite time of the year, autumn the second best. Summer I always loved and the winters were a struggle between life and love and total disgust. The seasonal changes were always beautiful. To see the cycle of life come to terms in autumn, everything and everybody would bow their heads and bend under the colder weather till nature would sing its songs again. In springtime, suddenly a whole country sprouts out of their front doors and life opened like a flower in bloom. And it would continue, even disrupted by the yearly storms, that would suck every blow of wind away till the birds dropped dead from the sky in the summer heat.DSC00236

That exactly was the reason I could never truly love the Netherlands. As a kid, it was heaven, I loved the cold and the darkness of the clouds between the yellow leaves but as I grew up, my veins needed warmth and I just couldn’t take it any more. It took a trip (in my early twenties) to Spain, (a 6 month stay, more on that in another blog) where I finally realized what the missing ingredient was in my decaying love for the Low Countries.

It took another decade before I dared, but leaving the Netherlands was the best I could do. (There are tons of reasons, but I won’t explain that now. Yes, another blog…) When I stepped out of the plane, that had landed on the island where I was born,  I knew it was all or nothing. My stay could’ve been a goodbye before I left to adventure into some South American rain forest to disappear and to never been found again. Or, it would be my last big fat try at “adult” life and I’d become the man I thought that I was expected to be. Well, that was a deception… but not completely!

IMG_1014My life had been a struggle with very high highs and the absolute deepest of lows (one day, I promise!) What did I accomplish? How many times did I fail? Did I manage to make people happy? Did I create the impact I hoped for? In 2012 (May 19th, the date that will come back in many blogs) I thought everything was lost. That my life was over even if I didn’t die (Yes. I’ll blog about it. One day, some day.) I wished I could’ve given up.

Life changed, paralyzed I re-valued every memory. I evaluated every dark corner in my soul and found light every where I looked. I had made mistakes. I had lost people and trust that had mattered deeply to me. When I came to Curacao nine years ago life had never looked so dark and grim, but I had managed to turn it around. Not knowing the hardest was yet to come.Afbeelding 016

Nine years ago I wanted to become a guide and spent more time in nature, so I did and became a dive instructor by accident in the adjacent years. I worked with teenagers at the library as a youth station coordinator and we created a wave of awesomeness and energy. I fell in love, and lost her (twice). I found the job of my dreams and saw it disappear in to memories. I learned what true friendship really meant, and most of all, how to receive it.

I have felt lost (as I was warned when I left Holland) but I mostly, I felt found. Just as I lost it all.

 

Again…

 

6741157ebcbf11e181bd12313817987b_7
Riding my wheels outside the hospital (SEHOS)

I’ve seen many things, had more adventures than I could ever blog about, but I never felt the value of the accomplishment. Never the full satisfaction of being complete with what I did. There was always this dark void that held me back, pulled me down and messed with my head, cluttered my heart. Yet the past nine years have meant it all, for they have brought me… me. I found ME in all this mess. I stood up, literally, stood up. Fighting for life, I found the purpose I so desperately craved for. I found love, strength, will, hope, beauty, respect, power, determination! All in what should have been fear and despair. It would be easy to see these last 3 years as the “dark ages” but the opposite is true.

I have found this light burning deep in me, and I need to finally let it shine.

Let me learn, let me teach, let me give, let me share. I live for two and I live for something more…

Thank you my island! Never was I more sure, I’m here to serve you!

 

 

Music of choice: Foo FightersAll My Life

“All My Life”

All my life I’ve been searching for something

Something never comes never leads to nothing

Nothing satisfies but I’m getting close

Closer to the prize at the end of the rope

All night long I dream of the day

When it comes around then it’s taken away

Leaves me with the feeling that I feel the most

Feel it come to life when I see your ghost

Come down don’t you resist

You have such a delicate wrist

And if I give it a twist

Something to hold when I lose my grip

Will I find something in there

To give me just what I need?

Another reason to bleed

One by one hidden up my sleeve

One by one hidden up my sleeve

Hey don’t let it go to waste

I love it but I hate the taste

Weight keeping me down [2x]

Will I find a believer

Another one who believes

Another one to deceive

Over and over down on my knees

If I get any closer

And if you open up wide

And if you let me inside

On and on I’ve got nothing to hide

On and on I’ve got nothing to hide

Hey don’t let it go to waste

I love it but I hate the taste

Weight keeping me down [2x]

All my life I’ve been searching for something

Something never comes never leads to nothing

Nothing satisfies but I’m getting close

Closer to the prize at the end of the rope

All night long I dream of the day

When it comes around, when it’s taken away

Leaves me with the feeling that I feel the most

Feel it come to life when I see your ghost

And I’m done, done and I’m on to the next one [8x]

[Yelling:]

Done, done, on to the next one

Done I’m done and I’m on to the next one [2x]

Hey don’t let it go to waste

I love it but I hate the taste

Weight keeping me down [2x]

[Yelling]

Done, done and on to the next one

Done, I’m done, and I’m

On to the next

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