When the Answer is No

I asked.

I begged.

The night after my son, David Glasser, a Phoenix Police Officer, was shot and was laying in a hospital bed attached to machines while his brain waves gradually disappeared, I felt a level of hopelessness that I had never experienced before.  The pain of the reality of what was happening continued to escalate as each hour passed through that long, dark night.

I was desperate to see God move – he needed to do something.  So I went down to the hospital chapel all by myself, I walked up to the altar and laid face down on the cold tile.   And I begged God for a miracle.

It was becoming increasingly obvious that Davey needed a big miracle.

So I begged.  I have no idea how long I laid there, pleading with God.

At this same time, my husband, Dave, was walking up and down the crowded hallway outside of Davey’s hospital room, asking everyone to pray for a miracle.

There were also three waiting rooms downstairs in the hospital filled with people – many of them praying with us, asking for a miracle.

Every hospital hallway I walked down was filled with people – most of them praying with us, asking for a miracle.

I texted my closest friends and asked them to pray with us for a miracle.

In my mind, I see all of those prayers combining into a huge hand reaching up out of the roof of the hospital, stretching up to heaven, asking our God who holds life and death in his hands to reach down and touch Davey.

We asked.

We begged.

Hours later we received our answer.

And the answer was no.

No more smiles and jokes from Davey.

No more fun and games with Davey.

No to watching my grandchildren grow up with their father’s arms around them.

No to watching Davey and Kristen grow old together.

So many no’s.

There’s a reason why we all listened to Hilary Scott sing “Thy Will” at Davey’s funeral.  Because we asked for a miracle for Davey and God said no.  He has a different plan than we do.

Every day I am reminded that God has a very different plan than mine.  Standing on the rock of God’s love and trusting that he has many great tomorrows waiting for me, I move forward……

– not knowing where this is going.

– not happy about the reality that I now live in.

– not understanding why I have to travel this path.

I move forward, taking my broken heart with me.  I listen and watch as God reveals his plan, one step at a time.

And one of those steps has been the David Glasser Foundation which is all about spreading caring and love in very practical and tangible ways to people who need to understand that our Police Officers are the good guys – they are part of the solution, not the problem.  The foundation is creating non-policing opportunities for our Law Enforcement officers to show how much they care about the kids and their community in one of the highest crime areas of Phoenix.  Because of all the work of our volunteers and the generosity of our donors, we are starting to see the walls come down.  We are beginning to see interactions that build trust.  And respect.  The foundation with Davey’s name on it is helping to improve the health of the community where Davey was killed. .

Is this our miracle?

Miss you, Davey.

#8144loveyou

I Hate Sirens……..Because I Know

The sound of sirens makes my stomach churn.

It means members of my Blue Family are rushing to take care of business.  They are putting themselves at risk – not knowing what they are walking into.  Just like my son, David Glasser, a Phoenix Police Officer, didn’t know it would be his last call when he stepped out of his police car on May 18, 2016.

Sirens are a signal that all is not well in my world.

Sirens in the middle of the night are the worst.  When its pitch black and good people are asleep, those with darkness in their souls like to crawl out to do their evil deeds.

And so I pray.

I pray for my brothers and sisters in Blue.  I ask my Father God for wisdom for them.  I ask for courage.  I ask for protection.  And I ask that justice will be served as my Blue Family  works to push back some of the evil in my community.

Sometimes these sirens are firefighters speeding through the streets with their sirens and lights.  These first responders are partnering with our Blue family in order to bring order to chaos and help people who are hurt.  I pray for them as the sirens wail through the dark night.

All the while, my stomach churns.  And I pray.

You, my dear brothers and sisters in Blue, are a very unusual breed of people.   You race through the night, in a hurry to take care of the crimes being committed by hateful people.

You run toward the gunfire.

You step into the middle of messes.  You move forward into the danger and are a human shield for others – even when they don’t like you or respect you.  You deal with the drugged liars and cheaters of our world every day, all day.

Meanwhile, the sirens scream through the night and my stomach churns.  And I pray for my Blue Family in uniform, trying to push away the fear.

The fear of what could be happening.

Fear for your wives and husbands.

Fear for your children and your babies.

Fear for your fathers and your mothers.

Fear for your families and friends.

Because I know the danger that accompanies those sirens.

I know what can happen.

The phone call.

The trip to the hospital.

The doctor’s unbelievable words.

And the nightmare.

So I pray.

 

 

I’m Not a Screamer

Normally I am not a screamer.

But on this day, I screamed.  And I didn’t stop for a long time.

It was several months after my son, David Glasser, who was a Phoenix Police Officer, was killed in the line of duty.  I remember sitting, staring off into the distance with my mind swirling with pain and grief and anger and confusion.  I don’t know how long I sat there but I know I gradually realized that I had been sitting there a significant amount of time.  And I didn’t feel like what I was doing was helping me deal with my shattered life and my broken heart.

So I thought about an article on grief that I had wanted to read and I eventually found it in a pile.  I am usually an organized person but those few several months after Davey died were the most unorganized months of my life.  Nothing seemed to fit anywhere anymore so everything went into a pile.

I’m sorry I can’t tell you the title of this article or the author or where I found it.  This just shows you how well my brain was functioning back then.

One of the suggestions in the article for dealing with extreme grief was to try screaming.  After surviving a tragedy, we often have a lot of emotions that we keep all bottled up inside of us because everyone around us is also hurting and we don’t want to add to their struggle.

So we keep it inside where it tears us apart, roars in our ears and keeps us awake at night.

The article suggested that screaming might help me get out my emotions and feel better.  I was ready to try just about anything.

They mentioned finding a time when I was alone – for obvious reasons.  I also needed to find a place where I could scream and not end up with the neighbors calling the cops.

Wow- I definitely needed to avoid that scenario.

I went in my closet but it was too small.  Don’t ask my why but I wanted to lay face down somewhere and scream into the floor.

So I laid down on the living room rug, closed my eyes and started screaming.  And I kept screaming.  I had the biggest pity party of my life – screaming my head of as I went through every negative and painful thought and feeling that was rolling around in my head.

I screamed a long time.  When I finally stopped I was exhausted and I had a sore throat.

And I felt lighter.  It felt good.

I got up on the couch and decided that this needed to be a turning point for me.  From then on, I was going to focus on life, not death.  From then on, I was going to be grateful for all I had while Davey was alive and all I still had.  My life was not going to be about what I had lost.

Davey was gone but, for some reason, I was still here.  So I needed to figure out what purpose God still had for me here and do it.

I have cried a million tears between then and now but no more screaming.  The swirling in my head gradually stopped, the piles in my house found their place and I am slowly getting used to the hole – some days are harder than others.

I am so extremely grateful for the 34 years we had Davey.

Miss you, Davey.

#8144loveyou

Happy Man Christmas!

Today is the day!

Man Christmas is traditionally the first day of professional football.  I know football officially started earlier this week but David Glasser, my son who was a Phoenix Police officer who was killed in the line of duty in 2016, would be celebrating today.

He considered this to be the best day of the year for men who like football.  From their perspective, Christmas is good, football is better.  Of course, a lot of women like football, too, but I’m thinking that not very many of women would put football before Christmas.

Davey loved the Arizona Cardinals.   He was definitely not a fair weather fan – he was there, cheering them on year after year whether they were having a good year or not.  He had season tickets every year.  He knew all the stats and kept up with all the tweets.

Davey loved to tailgate before the games with all of his buddies.  There were lots of games of washers and corn hole.  Lots of food.  Lots of shots and beers.  It was a good time to blow off some steam with his friends since he was going into the 3-hour game where he didn’t drink any beer because the prices were too high.  Davey was always looking for the best deal.

If you sat next to Davey in a game, you were in for some extra entertainment.  He kept track of anybody sitting around him with the opposing team’s hat or shirt on.  He would regularly yell comments out to these fans of the other team as the game progressed – especially when the Cardinals were ahead.  They would also hear from him when they went out to get some food and when they got back with their food.  He and his buddies often had an extra ticket or two because someone from their pack couldn’t go.  They were very diligent in making sure that the people who were given those tickets would not be cheering for the opposing team.

It just wasn’t done.

I love this picture because it shows Davey’s pure delight in being at a game surrounded by Kristen and his friends.  It truly was one of his happy places.

So we gather to watch the Cardinals game today – some of us in the stadium and some of us at home.

And we remember……..

We remember our favorite Cardinals fan and celebrate his love for football.

Miss you, Davey.

#8144loveyou.

In the Dark

The fence is down.

I”m talking about the fence around the Phoenix Memorial Cemetery where my son, David Glasser, a Phoenix Police Officer killed in the line of duty on May 18, 2016, is buried.

I hope the management of the cemetery doesn’t read this blog because the truth is that the fence never kept anybody out anyway.  The cemetery opens at 8 am and they close the gates when the sun goes down.

But the closed gates don’t keep anybody out.  I know of several night visits by groups of Davey’s friends who jumped over the fence.  There are ripped pants to prove it.  You know who you are.

After talking with other people visiting this area of the cemetery where several fallen officers are buried, I have discovered that jumping over the fence for a night visit is not an unusual occurrence.

This doesn’t surprise me.  Darkness highlights the emptiness we feel.

The hole in our lives feels huge after the sun goes down.

As the night wraps around us, loneliness grows.  Sometimes we’re surrounded by people but our heart longs for that one person.  The person who is missing.

And their spot on this earth is at the cemetery……

this is where we said our last good-byes……

so we go over the fence.

Before the fence came down, it was in bad shape.  So I’m assuming the cemetery will be putting up a new one.

I hope it’s not a very high fence.

I guess it doesn’t matter.  On those difficult, lonely nights a fence won’t stop anybody.

Miss you, Davey

#8144loveyou