Still Standing

As a Detective that investigates homicides and violent crimes, I spend a substantial amount of my time in emergency rooms. To be honest I focus a lot of my attention on my victims of homicides, but never really took the time to think about all my victims who have been shot or stabbed who actually survived their injuries. Almost as if them being victims didn’t count, after all they survived, right?

I have learned that the first 24 hours after surgery are critical, every breath you take, every fluid you make is meticulously recorded and analyzed, celebrated, or mourned, but what about the next 24 hours.

I have learned that the goal of any surgery is total recovery, to come out better than you were before. Some patients heal quickly and feel immediately relief. For others they heal gradually and it is sometimes months or even years later that they realize they do not hurt anymore. 

We all experience the bruises and pains of life. Some bruised are minor scrapes that we hardly notice and we continue to function. Some bruises are much deeper and they are painful to the touch. Believe it or not, pain has a purpose. It is the brains way of reminding you that that area is injured and you need not bother it, because it is not fully healed. Many times we experience horrible pains that we believe are so severe that we cannot recover and we cannot see past today.

In a perfect world there would be no pain, no sorrow, or no guilt, but we don’t live in a perfect world. We live in a world marred by human beings who have human experiences which are painful and our pains are a matter of life. But lest not forget that in this life there is also majesty and wonders and joys and pleasures, and all the things that make life beautiful and a gift from God. 

Often times after the pain is gone a scar remains where the injury was. Although the area is no longer is in pain, the scar remains as a reminder and indicator of what you've been through. The thing that we thought was going to take us out didn’t and we survived. So lets look back over our scars and wear them as almost a badge of honor that we are still standing. A little battered, a little bruised, maybe missing a body part, but still standing.  

So the challenge after any surgery is to be patient. But if you can make it through the first few months, if you believe that healing is possible ,then you can get your life back. But that is a big IF.

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Change is Inevitable. Unfortunately

I must be 100% honest when I tell you, I am not that big into change. I admit, I like routine and structure. I enjoy knowing that the things I have to do this week are the same that they were the week before, and the year before. Often times, during dog training, I have to explain to clients that their dog is making an adjustment. Depending on how old the dog might be, I explain that change is hard for everything and everyone. 

We, just like my client's dogs have to figure out, why we can no longer do freely the things that we used to be able to do so easily and without restrictions? Why are things changing around me? We find ourselves in a familiar place but maybe the people are totally different or worst even, we find ourselves with familiar people but the environment has changed or shifted. 

Change is a funny thing, not everyone can handle it. it can sneak up on you. Things aren't what they used to be. The entire world has transformed. I recently started a 12-week challenge. Nothing huge or dramatic. The goal of the challenge is to for every day for the next 84 days to do something that will make me grow (Physically, Intellectually, Emotionally, and Spiritually), regardless of how you feel. 

I was able to make a choice to change for 84 days, hopefully creating a habit that will endure. But what about those of you who didn't make the choice to change and life rocked you? Your entire world is transformed. You realize the ground beneath you has shifted and things aren't certain and there is no turning back.

The world around you is different, unrecognizable, you're stuck and there is nothing you can do about it. Like I said, I'm not big into change. 

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Day 11 of 84

Last evening I went over to my brother's place because he had been lacking on his firepit skills. So I went by to school him on how to make a fire in his pit. In our conversation, he kept remarking that he was on "vacation" and claimed that he was going to join me on my 12-week journey and today he joined me. So although today is day 11 for me, it is day one for him. He's calling his journey "sexy at sixty". So over the next few weeks, we will be holding each other accountable. 

#noexcuses #greatnessisinme

 

 

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MOP Family Dinner

It's with great pleasure that I share photos from our 2017 -2018 MOP Family Dinner. On Monday, June 10, 2018 our MOP parents, siblings, and boys gathered together to break bread and eat pasta at Leona's. We celebrated with one another the highs of our year together. At the conclusion of our night four of our MOP boys received awards. 

The HEART award was given to the young man who displayed courage and tenacity 

The VOICE award was given to the young man who continually shared his own original thoughts and ideas. 

The RESPECT award was given to the young man who displayed a keen ability to take ownership, accept responsibility and self-correct when necessary. 

The FOCUS award was given to the young man who displayed a willingness to follow directions, stay on task, and not become distracted by others. 

The entire night was a time of celebration of what it means to become a man of purpose. So as M.O.P. moves forward in transforming lives, we look forward to your support. 

Real Men Read: Men of Purpose

Why is "Real Men Read" necessary? The research is clear: if children cannot read proficiently by the end of third grade, they face daunting hurdles to success in school and beyond. Third grade marks a pivot point in reading.

And those struggling students are disproportionately poor students and students of color. The good news, almost all children can learn to read at grade level. Unfortunately, not all children have access to resources and some enter school already behind, due to such factors as family poverty and parents’ lack of education and engagement. 

I called on all men to participate in this program and help close the gap. I am proud, honored and humbled by the men who showed up. 

#MenOfPurpose #RealMenRead