As my husband gets ready to walk out the door for another day of work, my mind is reeling. Every day he works, fear gets to me. The Bible states multiple times not to fear, but I do.
My husband works in law enforcement. As he puts on his uniform, I notice how handsome he looks. I’m filled with pride and admiration. He faces the evil that so many pretend doesn’t exist. He hears stories of heartache and heartbreak that go far beyond what most of us are privy to. He is subject to vile sights and sounds and is often misunderstood as he tries to help. Many of the people he deals with are mentally ill or under the influence of drugs and alcohol. I wonder if he’ll be safe today as he straightens his collar and looks at himself in the mirror.
He’s so handsome. I want to pull him to me to embrace him, but he’s busy and I’m lost in thought. Who and what will he encounter today? I want to tell him to be safe, but I don’t want him to know I’m already worried. LEO wives are supposed to be strong. I can do this! I can be strong.
I go ahead and kiss him, hoping that the strength will come from him. It doesn’t, but I’m reassured that he still deeply loves me.
A few moments later, he’s putting on his belt. I notice the handcuffs, taser…tools that he needs for work to do his job and I’m struck with gratitude. It’s men like him that keep people like me safe. It’s men like him that arrested both my fathers when they broke the law. And then it hits me. I’m caught in Holy gratitude. I see what You did there, God. You gave me a husband who protects to heal the wounds from fathers and a mother who hurt me. I pause and pray. “Thank You, Jesus.”
I wonder how many other LEO wives feel this and have similar stories? Am I alone? Am I the only one married to a protector, having previously been broken?
He’s putting on his socks now and I see the scars on his feet from falling down ladder wells while in the Navy. I hate seeing scars. It means he’s been hurt and oh no…Here comes the fear again. I push it down as he looks at me, a question poised on his lips. “Why are you looking at me like that?” he asks. I don’t want to respond. I’ve just read another news article about yet another cop being shot and killed while sitting in his car during lunch and another one about a Corrections Officer being strangled by an inmate. I don’t want him to know what I know because then it might become our reality. I consider my words, then choose the lie. “I’m wondering what to make for dinner tonight.” I respond.
He stands to grab the keys, his wallet and water bottle and I stand to give him one last hug. I notice his badge and I’m filled again with pride. This man is my husband and I am so proud of him. He kisses me goodbye and I’m only thinking how much I love him and how lucky our kids and I am to have him in our lives.
As he walks out the door, I’m headed to the bedroom to breastfeed our little guy and the fear hits me again. What if he doesn’t come home? What if he gets hurt? I hear the car start up and it’s all I can do to pray. I pray for his protection and my peace of mind.
Moments later, our son is back to sleep and I’m distracting myself with housework. I look at the clock. Eight more hours and I’ll get to see him again. I can do this.
*These aren’t my thoughts everyday, but they were my thoughts recently and I wanted to share them with all of you. There are so many evil people on social media and throughout the news portraying Law Enforcement Officers (LEOs) and Corrections Officers as the enemy. Almost all of them are good and just want to serve and protect. My husband is one of them. And I felt it was important to humanize the other half of the equation – the wife. We’re not bad people either, and we have just as many feelings and emotions as those screaming out in hate.