We Stand Apart….

But we stand together.

The Thin Blue Line stands between the innocent and the evil ones.  It stands between peace and violence.  It stands between right and wrong.

The Thin Blue Line stands for honor and respect.  It stands for order and discipline.  It stands for courage and personal sacrifice for the greater good.

There is a vocal group in our country who does not value honor, respect, order, discipline, courage and personal sacrifice.

But we do.

There is a reason why the Police Officer’s badge is in the shape of a shield and is placed over their heart.   Their responsibilities require a level of committment and courage that only comes from a big heart.  A caring heart.  A warrior’s heart.  It’s their most important weapon.

Yes, there are bad police officers.  But it is not wise to focus on the exception.  Get to know a good police officer and you will understand what I’m talking about.

Police officers are the truest guardians of freedom in our country.  We saw an exceptional example of this in Phoenix last week.  The officers patiently supported the people’s right of freedom. They also protected the people of the city from violence and injury by managing the crowds and dispersing them in an orderly and disciplined manner.  Thanks for an awesome job, Phoenix PD!

Some people don’t appreciate how hard it is to achieve this balance in an unknown and super-charged environment.

We do.

Our Blue Family includes the Thin Blue Line along with all of the rest of us who love and support our officers.

We believe in loyalty.

We believe in justice.

We believe in enforcing the law of the land, even when it’s not popular in some places.

And we never forget our fallen heroes who stood for justice over personal safety.

If that describes you, welcome to our Blue Family!

We stand apart,

but we stand together.

 

#8144loveyou

#fallenbutnotforgotten

Love You

Two simple little words –

that are not simple

and they have had a huge impact on my life these last 15 months.

I have learned a lot about love since Davey, my son who was a Phoenix Police Officer, was killed in the line of duty last year.

I’ve been on this planet for a while and I have loved others and been loved by others my entire life.  

But I never really understood the enormous power love has – until now.  Love has transformed our tragedy into a growing season.  It forced us to leave bitterness and anger behind – those emotions don’t fit when love is the focus.  And it has helped us be thankful for what we had and for what we still have.  Love has filled some of the huge hole created by the loss of Davey and it continues to cushion the rest so its possible to move forward.

Love is not simple.

Loving people who aren’t perfect and aren’t like us is not simple.

Loving people we don’t know or don’t like is not simple.

‘Love you’ is a committment.  It means I always want the best for you even if that will cause me to sacrifice something on my end.

It means that I’m on your team.  I will care for you, defend you, pray for you and be here for you – always.

‘Love you’ says ‘You’re important to me’.  It says ‘ You’re valuable to me’.  It says ‘I’m going to give you the benefit of the doubt when you’re wrong or grumpy or just not very lovable.’  It says “I’m going to come up with as many excuses for your behavior as I do for my own.’

Sometimes I say ‘Love you’ to people I don’t know well or don’t know at all.  This ‘Love you’ says ‘I recognize you as a good person and I’m glad we’re sharing this place or this moment together. ‘ ‘

I have discovered that this over-all ‘Love you’ culture is much more powerful than it sounds.

It’s not just words.

It’s not superficial when we also act like we ‘love you’ to the people around us.  When the people around me – whether I know them or not – are important to me, the air changes around us.  The mood is different.  I can feel the acceptance and caring – not just of me but for each other.

A note to my Blue Family – loving each other and saying it regularly puts a band of steel under the Thin Blue Line.  Love adds a strength to our relationships that you will not understand until you try it.  Our family needs this strength to deal with our reality.

Love is the legacy that Davey left with us.  He knew how essential love is for all of us and he made sure we told each other – regularly – at least every time we left each other.

I’m amazed at how much ‘Love you’ has changed my world since last May.

And I’m starting to comprehend how much it has changed all of us.

If you haven’t gotten on the ‘Love you’ train yet, this is your invitation to jump on.  We’re just getting started and this train is going to some awesome places.  The trip alone is going to worth it.

#8144loveyou

#fallenbutnotforgotten

#hislegacyoflove

 

 

Survivors

“Survivors” used to make me think about people who have lived through shipwrecks and plane crashes.  These were people who had experienced the ravages of tragedy first hand and had lived through it.

Right after Davey was killed in the line of duty on May 18, 2016, people started calling my family ‘survivors’.  In the fog of last year, it didn’t make sense to me.  Now it does –  I definitely feel like a survivor.

Sometimes, my life since the day Davey was killed seems like a train wreck that hasn’t stopped yet.  Railroad cars filled with my hopes and dreams keep coming.

But the track broke last year,

and the cars fall off the track –

one by one,

down…

into a deep,

dark

ravine.

There’s a big pile of my broken dreams at the bottom of this ravine.

And the cars keep coming,

they keep falling.

The pile is growing bigger.

Other days, it feels more like we were all on a ship that was hit by a huge hurricane.  The storm was totally unexpected.  It was huge and ferocious. When our ship crashed into the rocks, we were washed up on an unknown shore – missing one very special person.

We landed in a place we never wanted to be.  But we’re here together.  The old ship is gone.

We’re all figuring out how to survive in this new place.

With a heart that is broken into a million pieces and with a huge hole in my life, I’m figuring out how to not just survive in this new place, but to thrive.  God had a purpose for bringing Davey home and he has a purpose for leaving me here.

The same can be said for you.

There’s a reason.

We survive for a purpose.

#8144loveyou

No Regrets

It’s a good feeling.

No regrets.

Davey went to work on May 18, 2016 and he never came home.

We have a lot of tears.

A huge amount of lost dreams.

A big hole in our lives.

But no regrets.

Davey lived life to its fullest and, as a result, those of us around him were also caught up in his whirlwind of a good time.  He was always planning the next poker party, the next BBQ, the next Fantasy draft and the next trip.  We knew we could count on him to provide the spark – something fun was on its way.

We all got used to saying ‘yes’ to whatever he was planning because we couldn’t say no – then we’d miss the fun!  We also got used to helping him do whatever he wanted to do because it was going to be good.

Now we are so thankful for all those great memories.  And we have a ton of them!  Our calendar was full of good times with Davey – we have no regrets about things we should have, could have,or would have done.   None of us knew how short our time was going to be with him.

None of us ever know.

Early on as a family, we learned to keep short accounts.  If something major was going on, we talked about it.  If something wasn’t a big deal, we forgot about it.  Let it go.  That way we weren’t hanging on to anger and hurt feelings.

There’s a reason why God tells us not to let the sun go down on our anger.  Because – sometimes –  the sun goes down and the person we’re angry with never comes home again.

Accidents.

Heart attacks.

Aneurysms.

Blood Clots.

Getting shot.

For whatever reason, the person you are mad at doesn’t come home…

and you are left with regrets.

That doesn’t have to happen.

Davey knew that some situations he got into as a Police Officer brought him dangerously close to never coming home again.  It was very important to him that the people he cared about knew that he loved them.  So the last thing he always said to us was ‘Love you’.

The very last thing he said to all of us was ‘Love you’.

And we said ‘love you’ back to him.

No regrets.

He talked his squad into saying it as well.  ‘Love you’ is the last thing they said to Davey.  And it was the last thing he said to them.

No regrets.

Just awesome memories of a very special person who we greatly miss……..