Category Archives: Personal Perspective

Saturday Stretch: When the greatest threat is yourself

Smiling Old LadySaturday Stretch: When the greatest threat is yourself

The love God shows me is undeserved, yet unconditional. Each year I reflect on my son’s birthday and the circumstances surrounding it. The lesson of grace was shown to me that night, so I share it with you today.

My son’s birth delivery came fast and complicated. Down syndrome was the blessing yet unknown at the time. Having zero experience with it—the depth of despair was deep. I hadn’t known sadness that intense since my mother passed away 7 years earlier.

I was so angry with God, and refused to acknowledge Him.
Later that same evening I called to check on test results for someone very dear to me. I sobbed as I shared the Down syndrome diagnosis.

Then I was asked the question still seared into my soul, “Can you cry some more?” How do you answer that? How does a person possess the capacity once drained of hope, to only know more sorrow?

The test results confirmed earlier fears. This dear sweet teenager would lose their sight. A cruel eye disease, RP, had already taken away most of it.

Have you ever ached so deeply in your core that speech escaped you? Have you ever wanted to surrender this life, but were too afraid to even consider it? Have you ever wanted to shake your clenched fist at God, but were unable to move your hands from your silently screaming face?

I wanted to yell at God, and tell Him how much I hated Him for what He did. I didn’t even have the will to move forward much less start a fight. I was choked with sorrow, hate, and defeat.

I uttered something incoherent about leaving. Trapped in a hospital special care unit with no idea where to go, I needed out. I was about to implode and needed solitude.

Stepping onto the elevator, there was a much older lady alone in the deepest corner. I feared the rage in my face would alarm her, so I bowed my head in the other direction.

“How are you son?”

I began to cry. She wasn’t much taller than five feet, yet she reached up and laid my head onto her shoulder. She was silent as I wept.

“Your mother was strong. You don’t have to be,” She sweetly replied.

“You knew my mom?” She didn’t know her.

She told the story of being in the hospital because her husband had fallen during the trip down from Ohio for their anniversary. Said they met here during the war.

We walked together through the empty lobby and toward the hall leading to the guest hotel rooms. Her spirit was gentle and I’d not realized laughter had replaced my tears.

“I’m Waverly,” she said. Her flat Ohio-accent sounded familiarly like the southern drawl of my mother’s voice. Have you ever smelled the sweet aroma of sound?

She lingered at the hallway’s entrance, and hugged me once it became obvious she had no husband there.

“I love you,” she said. Walking away, Waverly disappeared into the empty hallway. Peace, I had peace.

As strong, highly trained, and full of fury I was for wanting a battle with God—He sent a fragile, sweet old angel to open my clenched fists.

God can take your questions, your anger, your shame and your sin. He showed mercy to me in that darkest moment, and healed my shattered spirit with the darling embrace and voice of an angel named Waverly.

Thank you for allowing me to share, and May God bless and protect you—even when your greatest threat is to yourself.

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It’s My Anniversary:

anniversary pics

It’s My Anniversary:

This has been a banner year for me. Within weeks of celebrating my 50th birthday, I’m now blessed with my 25th Anniversary.

This is the date I answered the call, and the lifelong desire to serve became reality. It’s the day I became part of another, much bigger family that didn’t always share with my first one. It was the year I first gained new brothers and sisters, and became part of something mystical called the Blue.

My Anniversary also means more than seniority or experience. The significance of loss through line of duty deaths emblazons the significance of being blessed with surviving yet another year on the Job. The experiences (amazing and horrific) over 25 years are almost unimaginable, but the sacrifices are noble when offered with a sincere heart.

Would I do it again? Yes—it’s an honor to serve you.

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Be blessed by simple gifts

  

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Mardi Gras 2015 – In the books

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In these last 5 years of working Mardi Gras as the Chief of Police, I’ve experienced many changes. I’ve also seen that the most important things remain constant.

1. The people in the City of Thibodaux are amazing & know how to celebrate safely.
2. The staff at the Thibodaux Police Department are committed to community policing.
3. The members of the various Mardi Gras krewes cherish cultural value & Cajun tradition.
4. Max and I still look forward to our annual parade route HUGS.

Until next year, see you at the carnival.

 

Mardi Gras 2015 – In the books

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The Eulogy: 2014

The Eulogy: 2014

Over the last few days I’ve witnessed so many who’ve cursed or eulogized the last year; yes 2014. Instead of rejoicing in the 365 days of life God allowed them, they dismiss the gifts of grace in hopes of happenstance instantly or magically changing their circumstances.

What makes a person believe that the tick of a second-hand tock is going to erase the hardships, the failures, the could-have-beens, the should-have-beens and the never-have-beens?

Good things happen, bad things happen, terribly horrible things happen and yes; wonderfully fantastic things happen. This is what we call “Life.”

Were there hard times in 2014? Sure. After 15 years I still miss my mother. After 8 years and counting, I still cheer-lead for my son with Down syndrome to live an amazingly fantastic life. Day after day I still watch my dad as the effects of diabetes and dementia take their collective toll.

This is called “Life” and it’s a gift; rejoice in it. Psalm 118:24 – This is the day that the Lord has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it.

While attending a funeral recently, an 89-year-old gentleman graced me with conversation. In sincerity and optimism he looked squarely at me and said, “Chief, life is too short. Enjoy it.”

What do you say to that?

I thought about the many who hurriedly stowed away 2014 in hopes of better times, the comment I could not respond to on life’s brevity, and my own take on the passing of one calendar year to the next.

I’m going to be honest with you; am I where I wanted to be on several levels at the end of 2014? No, not at all.

– I wanted to increase my walk with Christ

– I wanted to be a better father

– I wanted to be a better son and brother

– I wanted to be a better friend

– I wanted to be thinner and healthier

– I wanted to not be so guarded

– I wanted to cycle more, and eat ice cream less (debatable)

Am I bitter? Have I plastered Facebook with admonishments over a 2014 unlived, have I darkened others’ days with tales of “unfairs” over the last year? No. Not at all. It was a fantastic year. It was a 365 day blessing of mercy that God gifted me. It was yet another year in my life well lived.

This is not an admonishment for pessimistic postings. It’s a reminder that if you think back over the course of the last year you will find;

1. The bad things that could have been avoided, possibly required more of our time and attention.
2. The horrible things that could not be avoided, we should be thankful that we’re still in this life to grieve, learn or recover.
3. The good things that happened probably resulted from our hard work and dedication.
4. The fantastic things that happened probably included someone else’s support along the way.

If you sat on your thumbs in 2014 waiting for what you thought owed and were disappointed, then sitting on your thumbs in 2015 will probably only result in much more soreness and even more criticisms come next New Year ’s Eve.

Don’t be so quick to eulogize the passing year for its failures, as they represent the “you” who experienced it. Instead, embrace the positive and learn from the each opportunity.

Failure is not getting knocked down. It’s refusing to get back up.

See you at the end of yet another superhero’ish calendar year 2015.

Scott
Originally posted at scottsilverii.com – The Eulogy: 2013

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