Monday, November 10, 2014

Our Picture

Well before the Towers fell, Roc and I decided to decorate our old apartment in NYC Cityscapes: we've got a picture of the NYC Skyline from the Brooklyn side, a painting from Lady Liberty's view...all kinds of views and shots that truly capture the essence of the City we love.
This morning as I was changing my son, he took his hands and started pointing to the one we have over his changing table: a night shot of the Towers, all lit up, the way they used to be.
He ran his hand over it and smiled at me.
"One day, I'm going to have to explain that to you, little man." I gave him a wistful smile.
I'm not looking forward to that day.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Now Trending: Judgment

When I first checked Twitter this morning, I wasn't surprised to see that Brittany Maynard had went ahead with her decision to end her life.
For those of you who haven't heard about this woman, she has been all over the headlines recently. A young woman diagnosed with stage 4 malignant brain cancer, she had publicly declared that she would take her life in the manner of her choosing. 
Thus the media firestorm. People on both sides of the issue chimed in, although now that she actually went ahead with it, the critics seemed more muted than the supporters. 
Either way, this is what Ms. Maynard is quoted as saying: 
"I would not tell anyone else that he or she should choose death with dignity," she said. "My question is: Who has the right to tell me that I don't deserve this choice? That I deserve to suffer for weeks or months in tremendous amounts of physical and emotional pain? Why should anyone have the right to make that choice for me?" 
This is a direct quote out of a piece she wrote for CNN.
I have never known anyone in such a difficult position, therefore I chose to reserve judgment, and when I found out the news earlier today, I decided that I must have fully moved into adulthood.
My words to my husband were, "I can't say as I blame her. Only God knows the heart."
And that has been the deep truth that I have been living in for the past two years. I have been judged harshly for my decisions: to have my child, to have thoughts about perhaps not having my child, to express those feelings here, to share my deepest fears, to lay it all out in typical Stella fashion.
I learned the hard way that sometimes people are afraid to deal with my level of truth; to embrace what is not easy, to reserve judgment, and to be a friend, whether or not they understood my dilemma.
These people are no longer a part of my life.
Oh, they may think they are...it's easy to hide behind the word "busy" and make assumptions about me in my absence; but if I haven't heard from you in over a year, I think it's safe to say that our relationship has ended. 
The good news is that although certain people chose to stand rooted in their judgements of me, other people stepped up and chose to support me no matter what.
I've always said that friendship is not just for the good times. It's kind of like a marriage: for better, and for worse. The problem is that most people don't believe that any more.
My husband and I do, but we're rare specimens. 
The even better news is that I figured all of this out before my son is old enough to understand, and to feel the first harsh sting of judgment in his own life. I am quite sure he will be judged, as we all are...but I hope I can teach him to not listen to the noise. Most people's judgments have to do with them anyway.
I wish Ms. Maynard's family peace in time. It will come. There are many things we don't understand in this world, and I believe that's where God comes in.
Like I said: Only God knows the heart. 

Friday, October 24, 2014

On the Front Lines

For anyone who does not believe that our Law Enforcement Officers are on the front lines, I will gladly point you towards yesterday's latest assault on our men and women in uniform: a hatchet attack on four rookie NYPD Officers in Queens, with two cops having to go to the hospital, one of them with a skull fracture.
ENOUGH!
Hashtag friggin' ENOUGH! 
I don't know about the rest of you, but I've had it. The talking heads are now poised and the chatter has begun: is there a terror connection to this horrific attack?
Do we need to find out?
The answer is yes, but...does it matter? And before you jump down my proverbial throat, hear me out here: what I am saying is that either way, we need to make sure that our Law Enforcement Officers are backed up and protected at every turn. Use of force? There should be absolutely no questions regarding this incident.
Unfortunately New York City's present Mayor has defunded and worked hard to ensure that the NYPD's efforts to profile those that might do us harm are all but eradicated; he's so focused on being politically correct that many Officers feel as if their hands are tied.
There should be no questions here; there's a video of the attack, and there are two NYPD Officers that presently need medical care as a result. The good news? The perpetrator is no longer with us.
As it should be.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Our Northern Neighbors

I got a chance to watch just a bit of the coverage today as the News poured out of Ottawa, and I want to say that I am so sorry to see the scourge of terrorism make its way up to our Northern Neighbors, not the first time, and sure to not be the last.
I am thinking of all the Law Enforcement Officers that will not see their families now for days, and perhaps even weeks on end as this whole thing shakes out...and I send love across the miles, and prayers...for all of us.

 
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