This past October, I was once again asked to write a short article for Star News after California lost four Law Enforcement Officers in the line of duty.
With each sister or brother that falls in the line of duty something else plummets in the life-space of those left behind. Peace. Four of our own have fallen in California this month alone. As society changes and things seem to disrupt our sense of security there are things that we must recognize, and equally important, things we must do. First, let me speak of recognition.
Recognize that these current events affect every one of us at a significant level. If things seem out of balance it is normal and expected. Even Superman would be affected by this amount of crazy. It changes us in many ways whether recognized or not, spoken or unspoken. Fear, uncertainty, anger, doubt, animosity, anxiety… all are normal but they must be recognized. Each of these affects our job, our life, and our peace. Not only that, it affects our family more than many of us realize. If things seem just a bit off right now, recognize it. It is the first step to regaining balance.
Secondly, do something. Internal pressures are released with action. Emotional wellbeing comes with activities that involve others or challenge self. In other words, physical activity helps to release the internal stressors that weight on the body and mind. Conversation helps to deflate the pressures that build in the human spirit. Spiritual practices help us reconcile ourselves to God and allow us to feel the protective arms of our creator comforting us as we trust in someone higher than ourselves. Action means action. Do something.
As a member of the Chaplaincy, I implore you to converse with your loved ones even though you have always tried to keep that healthy distance between family and the street. They need that. Seek spiritual guidance and allow a mentor or clergy member to help you process your significance in the world and your value in the eyes of the Creator. Exercise on a regular basis to get the blood pumping so you are not bringing that tension onto the street, or into the home. That tension can lead to serious mistakes. Realize that we are all in this together, processing the events of the day, and there are men and women worldwide “backing the blue” and praying for your protection.
We are all diligent to remind each other of the importance of “making it home safe.” I am asking you to do something far more important: “Make it home healthy.”