My Roller Coaster Ride

It has been hard to be thankful these last 4 1/2 years.  My son, David Glasser, was a Phoenix Police Officer who was killed in the line of duty on May 18, 2016.  This has been the most difficult time of my life.  There has been so much pain and sorrow.

So many tears.

Did you catch it?  Last week I blogged that I was thankful and this week I’m saying it’s hard to be thankful.  Am I confused?  No.  Many of us who have survived a tragedy live on this roller coaster of grief.  Good days, bad days.  Good old memories, recent memories with somebody very important to me missing.  Smiling one minute, tears running down my face the next. Thankful, then not feeling so thankful.

It’s hard to be thankful when there is this huge hole in my life where my son, Davey, used to be.

Smiling, joking, making plans – he brought his own unique light into my world.  He was great at adding new, fun people into our lives.  He always had room for one more – or ten more – friends in his life.

It’s hard to be thankful when I see how our culture is treating my Brothers and Sisters in Blue.

Hunting you down.

It feels like all the crazies of the world have been let loose on one target – and that target wears blue.

Evil keeps crawling out of the smelly, rotten holes it was hiding in – showing us all again why we so desperately need our Family in Blue to stand up for what’s right.bless-our-police

And then it becomes even harder to be thankful when I think of the families, friends and co-workers of all of our fallen brothers and sisters.

I’ve been there.

I am there.

It’s not a place you ever want to be.

And the number of us is growing quickly.  Much too quickly.  The dark cloud of sadness is moving over more and more of our Blue Family.

Every news report of every fallen officer brings it all back.

That night.

The shock.

The grief.

The nightmare.

The horrible reality.

But….

then…… here comes the roller coaster ride….

when I think about the very special gift I was given 39 years ago,

it’s very hard not to be thankful.

When I focus on the over-34-years that I was blessed to have Davey in my life, its hard not to smile.

And I’m thankful for every minute.  

I’m thankful to my Father God who has been walking closely beside me through this dark time – comforting me and drawing me closer to him.

I’m also thankful for our many family members and friends who have loved us and cared for us and are still praying for us today.  We share awesome memories of Davey.

daves-squadI’m very thankful for our Family in Blue who continues to show up and care for us and pray for us.   We share awesome memories of Davey as well and, together, we are strong enough to face tomorrow.

Together, we can be thankful for what we had…

and what we still have…..

on this weekend of Thanksgiving.

Love you!

Miss you , Davey.

#8144loveyou

I’m Thankful

Last Thursday was my son’s birthday.  He would have been 39 years-old.  

My son, David Glasser, a Phoenix Police Officer, was killed in the line of duty on May 18, 2016.  

He’s not here to celebrate with us but I still celebrate because I’m thankful for every day that he was on this earth.  

The common-held idea that good people die young is very appropriate in this situation.  Davey was one of the good guys and it’s hard to live with the big hole his death has left in my life.  I am frequently reminded of the painful gap between what is and what should be.  His future was something I used to really looked forward to.  His dreams became my dreams for him as he grew and matured into a man with integrity who cared about the people in his community and city.

I will never forget, on his first day of life, there was an Air Quality Alert going on for the city of Phoenix.  As I held my newborn son in my arms, I looked out at the foggy sky through my hospital window and wondered if it was wise it was to bring a child into a world where the air we breathe is polluted.

Since then, I have found that there are far worse things than air pollution.  The evil that lives in the hearts of people who prowl our neighborhoods is what is really dangerous.  The anger and rebellion and lack of respect that defines the lives of some of the people driving down our streets is much more lethal than the air.  Lately we’ve been watching this anger and evil exploding all over our country.  Unfortunately, it will only get worse until our elected  officials and the people of our country give our law enforcement officers the respect they deserve, staff our law enforcement agencies correctly, pay our law enforcement officers well and give the officers the tools they need to do their jobs right.

Why haven’t we learned this lesson yet?

I couldn’t have known 39 years ago that my son would decide to part of the solution to the problems in our culture and in our city.  Davey loved being a Police Officer because it put him right up close and personal with the people choosing evil and unsafe behaviors.  And it put good people behind his gun and behind his back, away from the danger.

I’m proud of being a part of the Blue Family which stands for courage, honor and sacrifice.

Davey stood tall for all three.

Miss you, Davey.  Love you!

 

#8144loveyou

Forever 34

It’s been it’s a struggle to move forward from May 18, 2016.  That’s the day my world blew up.  That’s the day my son, David Glasser, who was a Phoenix Police Officer, was killed in the line of duty.

I am blessed with a great group of family, friends and my Blue Family.  I’m learning how to live with only memories of Davey.

It’s not easy to do.

It doesn’t feel right.

A lot of grief.

The empty hole in my life is very evident.

But I have no other choice.

I thank God for no regrets and a ton of great memories.

Davey’s birthday is this Thursday, November 19th.  He would have been 39 this year.  We had so many fun on his birthday every year!  His 20th birthday landed on a home Cardinals game – the early years of the Cardinals.  We all had a blast tailgating.  Beer pong was still an approved activity then so there were lots of ping pong balls flying everywhere.  Good times!

asu

Davey often had an ASU vs UofA  Football Watch party the day after Thanksgiving if the big rivalry game was being not being played in town. If the game was in town he was usually tailgating somewhere close to the stadium.  Davey loved ASU and he loved the rivalry.  He graduated from ASU along with most of our family except we have one Wildcat…..and he loved to razz her about it …constantly 🙂

Everybody would come to these Football parties and we would have a great time laughing and playing all day.  Cornhole.  Washers.  Watching the game.  Drinking some Coors Light. (Davey’s favorite).   It’s hard now.  We miss him.  We miss his laugh and his joking and his big smile of delight when he was surrounded by his friends and family.

Right after Thanksgiving comes Christmas.   One of my favorite decorations for Christmas is over 30 pictures of my ‘Christmas Kids’ – one for every year since Davey was 4.  In the early pictures, he and his sister are sitting on Santa’s lap.  A couple of years later, Davey is standing in the picture because he refused to sit on Santa’s lap any longer.  And it’s not too many years later that Davey made sure Santa didn’t get in the picture at all anymore.

It’s been awesome to watch my two children grow up through these pictures and then, gradually, the group grew as they both married and we added my two very special grand darlings. Now I have four very special grand darlings.  Davey will never meet the littlest two on this side of heaven.

My grand darlings continue to grow fast.  I know if I blink, they will be graduating high school and then college, getting married and having their own little darlings.  The rest of us will be adding lines and wrinkles and spots and gray hairs as our years progress.

davey-squareBut Davey will stay forever 34…..

Fallen, but never forgotten.

Miss you, Davey.

#8144loveyou

It’s Still Beating

Thank you to Donate Life and Joey Gase who are remembering and honoring Davey today by putting his picture on Joey’s race car for his last NASCAR race of this season today in Phoenix.  We celebrate together this opportunity we all have to donate life to other people.  Davey’s final wish on this earth was to be an organ donor.  Here is his story –

He had the heart of a warrior and

somewhere –

his heart is still beating.

My son, David Glasser, was a Phoenix Police Officer who was killed in the line of duty on May 18, 2016.  He was an organ donor.

Davey was only 34 years-old and in excellent physical condition when he was killed by a shot to his head.  The actual process of him donating wasn’t easy for me emotionally.  It was hard to say goodbye and walk out of the hospital when drugs were still making his heart beat and machines were making his lungs breath.  But he wanted it, so it happened.

As a result, a whole crowd of people are still walking on this earth because they received Davey’s life-giving organs.

And someone got the Heart of a Warrior.

It’s still beating.

This heart beats for justice.

It beats for integrity and honor.

It beats for courage and personal sacrifice.

And it beats strongly for loving God and loving each other.

I believe that each of us has our own Warrior’s Heart.  God gave us things we are passionate about – things that make our hearts beat faster.  We’re all different so these passions are different as well.

The issues that we really care about are the areas where we are supposed to stand up and do something helpful, something positive.

How do I make a difference in this world?

How do you make a difference?

One very easy way we can make a difference is sign up to be an organ donor like Davey.  I’ve done that.  Have you?  Members of my family have received organs from other donors so we know what a huge blessing it is to people and their families.

Other ways to make a difference aren’t as easy but we need to figure out how to use our passions and our energy to have a positive effect on our world.  Don’t just talk about it – do it.  What do you get riled up about?  What angers you?  What frustrates you?  That is where your passion lies.  But we can’t let the anger and frustration take over – we have to use this energy for good.  To help.

One of the failures in our current culture is too many people are spending their precious time and resources standing against and protesting against things.

But what are they standing for?  Their time and resources could be used to help people – used to make something good and positive happen.

It’s a choice.

I choose to help others look to God, especially in the darkness.  I choose to stand for justice and freedom in our country by standing for the Thin Blue Line between the evil and innocent.

My Warrior’s Heart beats for loving God and loving others.

What does your Warrior’s Heart beat for?

What are you doing about it?

MIss you, Davey.

#8144loveyou

Another Piece

And another….

and then another.

When will it stop?

As tears roll down my face, I realize the answer to that question is never.

My son, David Glasser, was a Phoenix Police Officer who was killed in the line of duty on May 18, 2016.  The immediate shock and pain of this tragedy was huge, steam-rolling through my life, smashing everything in its path.  It took months before my brain could organize thoughts again without swirling into a cloud of grief. 

My husband and I lived 1 1/2 miles from Davey’s family at the time of his death and we saw him on an almost daily basis.  He was an extreme extrovert so he was always stopping by with his son to just say hi or pick up his dad to go to the Home Depot or Best Buy.

The emptiness and darkness of each day after his death was excruciating.  The hole is my life was unbelievably tough to deal with.  God was the only thing holding me together during the tsunami of Davey’s death.  His death was so different to me from the deaths of my mother and father and oldest brother because he was always supposed to be in my life.  I was supposed to leave this earth before Davey.  His whole future was ripped away by this tragedy, leaving huge gaps in mine.

People will say that the first year after someone dies is the worst.  The first year after Davey’s death was really tough but I felt the second year was even worse because the permanence of having to live without him became a reality.  

What I didn’t know was how painful it would be to keep losing pieces of my life with Davey as time goes by.  It’s been 4 1/2 years and the losing hasn’t stopped.

This week we lost Milo who had been Davey’s dog.  After Davey’s death, Milo became a service dog at the Phoenix Police Communication Center, loving and helping people as part of Davey’s legacy. It was so great that Milo was still a part of the Blue Family in Phoenix!  And then this week he passed away.

Another piece is lost.

So painful.

It feels like losing a piece of Davey and I don’t want to lose any more pieces. 

But I know I will.  It’s inevitable.  

A couple of the things I have learned that work well for me when the grief is overwhelming and my broken heart is bleeding is to stay as close to God as I possible can.  His love and strength comforts me.  I also find that focusing on the 34 awesome years we had with Davey and remembering all the blessings I have in my life right now helps me move back into a positive place.

It helps but it doesn’t change the fact that it hurts everytime I lose a piece of my life with Davey,

Miss you, Davey.

#8144loveyou