When I left the Military I felt like I lost my Identity and purpose. I miss the camaraderie and connection that was such a big part of my life.
The things I've seen no one should ever have to see. I have a carousel of slides in my head and sometimes I have a hard time unseeing them.
I experienced so many different situations that brought up intense emotions, but I just had to deal with it and found myself just putting those strong feelings in a box.
Being apart of Guardians SCV has emboldened me to open up, and release some of my pent up, and compartmentalized baggage.
The struggles and toils veterans go through in daily life can be overwhelming. Guardians SCV has provided me a safe, non judgmental and open environment to share my life with.
The ability to be around like minded, dedicated individuals that share similar backgrounds and experiences has truly enriched my life.
These Guys and Gals "get it".
When I first joined the Guardians I didn't know what to expect, just sounded like a group of folks that I could hang with. As time went on friendships grew and it became easier to open up and let some of that stuff (that many of us have tucked away) out and free myself from those demons.
The camaraderie, the bantering back and forth and knowing that each and everyone of these guys and gals have my six has been a life changing adventure.
The most beneficial part of being a Guardian has been my stability. Mental, emotional & spiritual stability which has given me a peace I never knew I could have.
I had no idea how much garbage I was carrying and worse, how much it was affecting my loved ones.
Guardians has been a life changing experience for me. I have learned to understand myself, my family and my friends in a new way.
To be surrounded by like minded individuals with similar backgrounds and experiences creates a very unique environment where camaraderie, connection and the ability to build strong relationships happens quickly..
This community of my peers quickly became like family. The transparency and openness found here amongst these great men and women creates an environment where sharing your story and growing with one another becomes more comfortable when I realized I wasn't alone.
IRON SHARPENS IRON
Being a part of Guardians has been extremely beneficial for me over the last several years.
The ongoing support I have received has helped me countless times in dealing with and processing challenges in my professional and personal life.
The camaraderie and friendships here are real and deep, and we take the mantra of Iron Sharpens Iron seriously.
We may come from different departments in Law Enforcement and Fire, or different branches of military service, but at Guardians, we are one team, one unit, and no one gets left behind.
I was completely broken when I joined the Guardians. I had lost my Husband of 20+ years, a USMC Veteran & Law Enforcement Officer to cancer, and I wasn’t dealing with it very well. I actually wasn’t dealing with it all, and because of that, it became increasingly harder to concentrate on my own job as a Law Enforcement Officer. That’s when a fellow Guardian/Law Enforcement friend reached out and invited me to come to a Guardian’s meeting. I felt the Love at that first meeting, especially from the Marines in the room (Semper Fi 😘). I have not only been able to finally process my Husband’s death, but my life has been truly enriched by the Band of Brothers that I now have in my life. I’m a Spiritual person, but I had lost my inner peace. I’ll be forever grateful to my Guardian family for helping me to find myself again and regain some of that inner peace back. I had truly forgotten how strong of a person I am.
It’s a sad truth that in our professions (Veterans, Law Enforcement, and Firefighters), we are taught to “suck it up” and bottle our emotions. We don’t do counseling and we don’t seek help, because that we are told, is a sign of weakness. The problem with that way of thinking is that at some point, it becomes to great of a burden for us to carry. That burden leads many in our professions to suicide, alcohol abuse, and failed relationships.
If I can offer one piece of advice to those of you in our professions that are out there hurting or feeling lost, it would be to say that you are not weak to seek help. You are smart! We have all given so much for our Country and our Communities. We deserve to have inner peace. Please join us and unload some of the burden you carry, with people who actually understand and will support you in your healing. We truly will welcome you with open arms. ❤️💙💚