What If

On Tuesday, June 23, 2015, our area suffered the loss of a hero.  Trooper Eric Chrisman died from injuries sustained in an automobile accident, after his vehicle failed to negotiate a curve and was struck by a tractor trailer. It’s been 4 days of hurting for our community.  My husband served on calls with Trooper Chrisman, and I can remember him coming home after one and talking about what an awesome attitude he had.  It was a bad situation, but he made it bearable (even though they were ankle deep in snow).

trooper-eric-chrisman

I continue to pray for his family, and our blue family. Even those who didn’t have any relation to him at all still feel that ache. What it has also spurned is a new stirring of what ifs.  They’re always in the back of the mind of an LEOW, but moments like these push them right to the front.

Uncertainty, I think, is easy to watch turn into fear. I finally learned, when my LEO was in Iraq, that I was going to drive myself crazy over the “what ifs.” I decided to be content knowing that, if anything were to happen, it would happen doing something he took pride in and wanted to do. I know he was scared, and I know he’s been scared while being an LEO. But, instead of succumbing to that, he met a need.

So, if something ever happens to him, I hope I’ll know that still applies. He made the conscious decision to be a hero.

I’ve spoken to one wife, in particular, who lost her LEO husband in the line of duty. She agrees with the above. He did what he *wanted* to do, and saved a lot of lives in the process. He didn’t make it home that night, but a lot of people did because of his sacrifice. 

“Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:6

To date, we’ve lost 63 officers in 2015. That’s a lot of hurt in our blue line family. Please, if you’ve not already, pray for those affected by the loss of a husband/wife/daddy/mama/son/daughter/brother/sister in law enforcement.

Flourish

BlendToday I thanked Jesus for cutting ties and shutting doors. Sometimes I see things that trigger memories of past relationships, and just rest in knowing they are not in my circus, or of my monkeys.  I hate knowing that they have had a poisonous effect on people I have respected, but that’s their puzzle to work out.

Doesn’t mean I don’t love them. Doesn’t mean I don’t care about their well being. It just means I no longer consider it my priority. Proverbs 13:20 tells me that it makes a huge difference who I choose to be around.  I can tell you, from personal experience, what it has meant to see loved ones extracted from poisoned waters and placed somewhere they can flourish. I can tell you what it’s done for me at times.

Pray about it. Forgive them.  Don’t be distracted by what they’re doing or who else chooses to participate. Forget what you see as your “investment” in that person (that’s what sometimes makes it the hardest to go).

Then, take a deep breath, acknowledge that it hurts and guiltlessly move on with being/becoming who you are.

“I know you’re a…

I fail every single day. EVERY single day… so when people say things like “I know you’re a Christian, so I have a question…” or “I know you’re a prayer warrior, so would you pray for…”

It gives me goosebumps and makes me wanna cry.

Every time.

To Our Newly Rescued German Shepherd…

Oh, Ellie. As I sat here in tears over things I can’t control, and believing that life was getting out of hand…you needed to go potty. You burst through our door, ran down the road and ended at *that* neighbor’s house.

I know you don’t know them. You believe the world is your playground and everyone wants to feed you chicken nuggets. You don’t know that I’ve prayed about the relationship we have with *that * neighbor. You don’t know how cruel they have been, the angry signs they’ve thrown over their fence or the fact that when C was in Iraq they wanted my life to be as difficult as possible.

You don’t know that I’ve felt a lot of conviction about my complete disdain for them. God’s humor is sometimes hard to swallow…because you ran to their house, and they were in their yard with their ENTIRE family.

At first, I turned my car the other way, and thought about driving to the PD without stopping. I thought about waiting until C was off and making him go get you.

Then I realized there was a murder of crows waiting for me…in their yard…and I was going to have to eat some.

And so I went, and you showed out. And I sat in their yard, wishing one of those magic, massive sinkholes would do me a favor. And they gave you a prime rib biscuit.

Thank you for thoroughly embarrassing me in front of *those* neighbors. Perhaps your little escapade will inspire a friendly wave the next time we see them, rather than the scowl we generally share.

I hope you’re tired.

I am.

An Open Letter to WPSD-TV

Dear WPSD-TV,

It’s been a while since my last open letter to you. Not much has changed. While I continue to spend my days supporting law enforcement and their families, you continue to spend yours being a detriment to officers and agencies doing their jobs.

Today, though, you reached a new low. As pictured, you posted a long-winded diatribe regarding a Supreme Court ruling from February of 2014 (representing it as current news). Obviously, someone responsible for posting on your page scrolled through their news feed this morning, and probably dumped their Cheerios when they saw this headline:

“SUPREME COURT RULES POLICE DO NOT NEED A WARRANT TO SEARCH YOUR HOME.”

Assuredly, that’s what happened. This MUST be an example of hair-trigger sharing reflexes, because I would hope you wouldn’t normally get your news from a website called COUNTERCURRENTNEWS.COM. Right? Surely you’ve got better sources than a website that clearly states in their disclaimer, “We are not responsible for any inaccuracies if they are not reported to us.”

Also, the whole disclaimer thing in itself should probably serve as a red flag.

“Holy mother of pearl! We must reach this to the masses!” your social media superstar thought. Right away, they clicked the share button, but not before ensuring they poured a little gasoline on the fire.

You’re not one to post such things without incendiary commentary, are you? Why do you want to keep people afraid? Comments erupted from the usuals, decrying their decaying freedom and backhandedly warning the police that there will be “problems” if such measures are taken in their homes. All the while improving your reach to your Facebook following by improving your place in the algorithm (hello, interaction!).

In 2015, we have lost 54 officers. 16 of these, alone, were in May. Here is a breakdown:

9/11 related illness: 2
Accidental: 1
Assault: 1
Automobile accident: 15
Gunfire: 14
Gunfire (Accidental): 2
Heart attack: 11
Motorcycle accident: 1
Struck by vehicle: 3
Vehicle pursuit: 2
Vehicular assault: 2

TWO of these officers have died in Kentucky, ONE was in Illinois and ONE was in Tennessee.

We’ve also had 10 K9 officer deaths:

Animal related: 1
Automobile accident: 1
Drowned: 1
Fire: 1
Gunfire: 2
Heat exhaustion: 2
Poisoned: 1
Struck by vehicle: 1

Where is your outrage for these tragedies?

We don’t need your help inciting hate against our law enforcement. Our heroes are facing enough danger without your white-noise, lap-dog, click-bait-begging nonsense.

I agree there needs to be accountability, but I also believe our media needs to share a HUGE piece of that pie. Until the day you begin reporting the actual news, without inflection of hate or bias money-grabbing motives, you have lost all credibility as a news source.

What else are you misrepresenting?

However, until that day comes (and long after), be advised that my husband (and many like him) will continue to serve their communities. Even if you sign your name to an article clearly stating you do not support our LEOs, they will still answer your calls when you’re needing help.

That’s because they have something you clearly lack- integrity.

Once again, if the problem lies in an inability to find positive news stories regarding our law enforcement, I invite you to contact me. I’m more than happy to show you all the good they’re doing (especially in our local area).

Sincerely,
Brandi

Faces

Today my LEO had a rough day. Not just the normal sporadic, full moon, “need a minute” rough day. It was the kind where his (awesome) dispatch Facebook messaged me and gave me a heads up before he got home. I stopped at Sonic and got him a milkshake before meeting him at the house.

Now, he is in our 4 year old son’s room and I heard him say “I need red.” They’re coloring in a giant Paw Patrol coloring book, while watching the Muppets’ movie.

Isn’t it amazing how, less than 12 hours ago, he went 10-8 and made himself responsible for the worlds with which he’d come in contact? In his 8 hours on duty, lives changed and he was the one people looked to for help. Around their dinner table, he’ll be “some cop” who did something that affected their day. He was the good guy and, to a few, he was a perceived antagonist. Tomorrow, he will do it again. He may even turn the tables, and be a hero to those who saw him as something else today. He won’t hesitate to do the right thing, keep them safe as best he can and uphold the law.

Then, God willing, he will come home and just be “daddy.”

Hero Necklaces

I’ve been working very hard on my new Hero necklaces from The Siren. Police, Fire, Dispatch, Paramedics, Nurses and K9 are all included in the line. It has been so much fun!! My LEO has been especially patient with the noise from the stamping, and has even helped out with assembly.  I’m grateful.  Yesterday, I worked on them while listening to the Contemporary Christian station on Pandora. It was like I spent the day with a close friend. Today I wrapped up nearly 20. Here’s a look at a few of them.  These help support the PWoK mission and are helping to make my car payment today. God provides.

The fire necklace shown here was a challenge, but so much fun. There are not one, not two…but 6 firefighters in this family. SIX! So, we put the 4 kids on one and mom/dad on the heart behind them. I am very, very excited for her to receive this one!!fireneck

The bead on the EMS necklace is impossible to catch in a photo. It’s a gorgeous holographic looking (my husband described it as “opal-ish”) pendant that I put together by hand. It’s beautiful, but I’m a bit partial!paraneck

Don’t overlook the thin gold line beads on the dispatch necklace. smile emoticon I am still so in love with these wings!!dispatchneck

You can get yours at http://www.thesiren.storenvy.com. Shipping is free, and I have special deals for 2+ ordered at the same time!

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