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Rabbit Hole Thoughts...




The battle for my mind is never over. I'm sure the same is for you if you have any sort of mental health and wellness illness. I have nightmares and daymares, invasive thoughts, emotional triggers etc. The other night I had a very vivid dream that I can just about remember every detail of. First of all, usually I can't remember dreams to save my life but combat, policing PTSD dreams lock on sometimes. They latch on to the root of my fear of being accused criminally by the system for doing exactly what I was trained for and then getting Monday-morning-quarterbacked and nitpicked for the mistakes I made along the way. The system and it's representatives look past the crime that was prevented or stopped and onto the minuscule mistake I made along the way (because I'm supposed to be a perfect robot) and they hone in on that fraction of a fraction of a moment and throw out the case in court, my reputation is ruined, my integrity is dragged through the mud and I am looked at as a criminal myself. In worst cases I am charged with crimes and put into jail and my family is ruined. Throughout my career in law enforcement that had become one of my worst fears because I had seen it happen several times in the line of duty.





The other night I had one of these dreams. I did not wake up from it. It played out. I was in law enforcement, on duty and in uniform. I was in a city (downtown) setting and possibly on a walking beat. At the time I was with at least 2 other officers walking the beat down an alleyway when a call came out (I'm guessing attempted strong-arm robbery). My two fellow officers were dispatched but I was not. They ran off down the alley-way toward the dispatch location. When they were out of sight I saw a person run past the alleyway in front of me and began to give chase myself. I found myself caught up with this person and we were both out of breath. As I approached him he was holding a check up in front of his face and staring at it. (My mind recognized him as the victim, he had been running from his would-be assailants and had gotten away.)


Next moment, a fellow officer and I were approaching two suspects on foot who were standing by a car parked near a sidewalk on a main road in the city (it was wider with more open areas, I actually imagined it as in front of a courthouse). One of the men we were approaching to question had dark shades on. As we got close, the one with shades reached into his jacket/sports coat and started to pull out a semi-auto pistol. There was no time, I drew my gun and shot him and while I was doing that the suspect next to him began to draw his pistol and I shot him too. They both died.


Flash, I'm now back at HQ with the shoot team who are going to interview me and bag and tag everything. Apparently, we had recovered several guns and other illegal items and there were two female suspects who had been taken into custody too. Dreams are confusing. Finally, I am called in to speak with the lead Detective/Sergeant or someone in command. And they end up pointing out my mistakes. 1. I was never dispatched to the call in the first place and did not add myself to it at any time during the whole encounter. 2. I apparently did not put on my body cam and so the incident from my perspective was never captured. Then the dream ended. No ending, just left in limbo. Greatest fear realized. I will be held accountable for someone else's criminal acts because some of my T's were not crossed and I's not dotted. I woke up that morning thinking this was real, that I was still on the job and that I may be going to prison for doing the right thing. It ruined my state of calm and I was reminded that I am glad I'm not doing that anymore. I've been out of the military for 17 years out of law enforcement for about 8 years and it still invades my mind.


What's different now? Through counseling, loving family members and friends and our forgiving and loving Father God I know this stuff isn't real and that I don't have to carry it. It may affect me for a few days like this did but it is not all-consuming like it used to be. I have been freed from it. Invasive thoughts will happen probably for the rest of my life but I don't have to let them rule or take my life from me. It is my choice to entertain them or to let them go at Jesus feet and accept His peace of mind in return. It's your choice too. What will you do?


Let God's Word Comfort You and Guard/Renew Your Minds:


'Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.'

Philippians 4:4-9


'Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. '

Romans 12:1-2

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