It’s been a rough December for New England fire-fighters and their families. Two fire-related deaths in the space of two weeks, at the worst time of the year. Two fire-fighters, husbands, fathers, leaving behind families.
I’m not at all sure what to do, aside from keep their families in my prayers and continue supporting my husband in what he does.
I am a fire-wife. I feel weird writing that because even though I am his wife, I don’t feel the need to take on everything my husband does as my identity. I’m my own person and the fire-bug has never bit me and probably never will.
At the same time, being married to him has required adjustments. Adjustments of my expectations, my love of planning (I can make plans, but it doesn’t mean we’ll always get to do things as planned!) and our general life-style. I know that 3-4 weeknights of the month are taken up by department training and other nights by shifts he picks up on the side. Dinner will be interrupted sometimes. Sometimes I go to bed alone because he’s gone on calls and get up in the morning alone because he’s gone on another sometime in the wee smaes.
Sometimes I’m alone at family functions, either because he never made it there or did, but ran out the door with the sound of the tones. Sometimes we take separate cars because of this and sometimes we don’t and I get stranded momentarily or get dropped off home by a family member. I’ve gone with him direct to calls and I’ve had wild rides with lights flashing to the station as the tones go off while we’re out and about together.
I try to be supportive. Sometimes it’s easy (plenty of things to do, lots to distract and keep me occupied), sometimes it’s hard., being okay with him leaving at the drop of the hat, or, to be more exact, sound of the tones. Sometimes he leaves at what feels like the worst possible moment – and sometimes it honestly doesn’t bother me too much. I know that it will be a million times harder when kids come into the picture, but I try not to think about that one yet.
Sometimes I worry.
Sometimes I don’t.
But lately? I do.
As I write this post, he’s gone, helping cover a nearby station while that station is assisting at a structure fire. And I feel something in between relieved and half-guilty for it because he’s probably sitting in a station right now, chillaxing with his ‘second family.’ And I’m kinda glad of it tonight, but at the same time, I wonder if there are other wives out there, waiting at home, thinking posts like this one. And I feel silly, stupid and melodramtic for worrying, for feeling relieved and well, for writing this post.
It’s been just a couple hours and I’m going to bed alone, for the second night this week. I’m lying in bed and waiting to hear the engine go by, headed home, even though I know it won’t be for awhile yet. And I’m praying, please, please keep them all safe, let no one be hurt and don’t add any more pain to December. Let all be well, let everyone be okay.