A little boy with a big story
 
 Annual family photo from 2016

Annual family photo from 2016

I’m Jason Peetz…sometimes better known as Jonathan’s dad.  In the spring of 2011, when my son Jonathan was still only a bump in my wife Lauren’s belly, we were given devastating news.  Because of multiple congenital abnormalities, we were told his condition was “incompatible with life”.  And yet, here we are, almost six years later, with an amazing, happy son. This is the story of our journey through the many life and death experiences Jonathan has faced along the way and the challenges he continues to face every day.  It’s about the emotional highs and lows we have faced as parents and is a platform for sharing some inspiration, and genuine stories of how Jonathan has impacted those who have gotten to know him.  

I decided to write “If You Have a Pulse” out of a strong calling my wife and I have always had to share his compelling story.  Jonathan is an unexpected little hero that has challenged our strength, reaffirmed our faith, given people a reason to hope in times of overwhelming despair, and has inspired unconditional love sometimes even in those we’ve never met.     

My wife and I have owned an all star cheerleading gym since 2000.  We've also both spent time coaching at the collegiate level.  For me, it was 13 years coaching at UNC Charlotte immediately after graduation, while Lauren coached for three years at Georgia Tech (yes...the smart one coaching other smart ones:).  I have a degree in English from UNC Charlotte and the smart one (my wife) has a psychology degree from Tufts University as well as a masters degree in exercise and sports sciences from FIU.  I’ve worked for the police department in Charlotte, NC since fall of 2000.  During my career I’ve spent eight years as a violent fugitive apprehension detective and six years as a SWAT team sniper.  We’re both pretty stubborn, type A personalities and were always used to having some degree of control in our lives.  Enter Jonathan…so much for the whole control thing.  

After so many years of deciding the direction of our business, being in control of training competitive college athletes, and taking on the alpha male persona that comes with violent fugitive apprehension and SWAT work, Jonathan came along and changed my course.  I've had to become more comfortable with being vulnerable, accepting help from others, sharing very personal experiences with people I don't know and more often than not, letting go and letting God.  

From a dad who may need this outlet more than anyone reading it, I hope this cathartic journey will touch you, inspire you, give you hope, make you laugh and cry, educate you, and help you look past differences to find more ways to love.  Enjoy the ride. 

Contact me at - IfYouHaveAPulseBlog@gmail.com