There are a lot of battles you fight as a police wife: police equipment everywhere, a 24/7/365 schedule, an overwhelming fear when I do not hear from him for hours … but the most stubborn one is the work phone.
Most people in the world see smartphones as a convenience. I see it as my enemy. I often feel like I am fighting for attention and my opponent is 5″ tall and 3″ wide. Having the requirement to carry this phone and answer it is bad enough, but then there are the emails, the text messages, and all the other potential distractions smartphones come with.
No matter the time nor place, that phone can ruin all our best laid plans. We could be arriving at my parent’s house for Christmas Eve dinner then his phone rings. Next thing I know he is gone off to work and me and our two dogs are stranded.
When my husband went to the police academy, we didn’t live near the actual academy. The closest one was about 3 hours away, which meant he’d leave Sunday afternoon to drive there and return late Thursday night. He drove with 3 other new recruits in a department car, one of whom was a woman.
To be honest, I didn’t have any issue with that. I thought she must be super cool and couldn’t wait to meet her.
When I dropped him off at the academy, however, there stood a tall, thin Blair Waldorf look-a-like asking my husband if he’d like to join them for dinner.
Meanwhile, I stood there, four months pregnant in clothes that fit awkwardly because I still looked like I’d just had a big lunch. I, um, wasn’t feeling exactly confident.
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I remember the first time I saw my husband in his uniform. It blew my mind.
I mean, not only did he look super handsome (there’s something to be said about a man in uniform, after all ;)) and he’d shaved his face completely for the first time since I’d known him, but it reminded me of the new person he was becoming.
That uniform signified the new power and responsibility he had. It signified the commitment he’d made to protect and serve, no matter what it cost. Whether the cost was just a much-needed day off, or his safety, or even his life.
But that uniform also reminded me that with that commitment, I was now second in his life. Don’t get me wrong – when it’s his choice, I come first. But when it’s not? The job always comes first. No matter whether I’m sick, no matter if we have a newborn… if the world needs him, he’s there.
It’s a lot like being married to Batman, I swear, and there’s nothing more frustrating than when I need my husband and that bat signal shows up and takes him away.
Because of all the sacrifices he has to make for the job, the statistic that we only have a 25% chance of making it is ever-present in my mind. With every frustration I experience because of the job, I remember how important my marriage is to me. Being one of the 75% of law enforcement marriages that doesn’t make it is not good enough for me.
Because you know what? I’m determined. I’m not one to just give up in the face of adversity. In fact, the harder things get, the more determined I get to be successful. I want to beat the odds, and whatever it takes, my marriage is worth it – especially now that we have kids.There’s nothing more frustrating than when I need my husband and that bat signal shows up and takes him away.Click To Tweet
At times, the statistics about law enforcement marriage have scared me. Overall, though, they’ve been a catalyst to make me more careful, more intentional about caring for my marriage. It forces me to realize that the marriage of my dreams isn’t going to happen by chance. It’s going to happen because we worked for it.
If you want to divorce-proof your marriage, these 5 things are what you’ll want to focus on.
Sometimes, my husband has days that just straight-up suck.
Granted, we all have those. I have those. But his sucky days always seem just a little suckier than my own. (How many times can I use the word “suck”?)
Seriously, though. I might complain that our son would not. stop. throwing. tantrums. all day long, but when he gets home and has gotten into a fight with someone high on drugs or seen something he really, truly wishes he hadn’t, that pretty much takes the cake.
I can’t tell you how much I admire him (and his fellow officers) for the sacrifices they make. I’m glad they’re willing and able to do the things I’m not.
There’s a lot of bad press about cops lately. Have you noticed? Who am I kidding: of course you have. It’s impossible to miss… unfortunately. There are countless articles that call the police power-hungry, over-militarized, trigger-happy, insensitive, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
If you’re anything like me, they strike a nerve (to say the least!)
You know your husband. You know his friends. You know them as people who feel called to law enforcement because they want to make the world a better place. You know how their jobs touch their hearts, even when they have a hard time showing it.
My husband doesn’t have a lot of close friends, but he has one who’s been a constant ever since they first met.
He’s always there for us. He was at our out-of-state wedding without hesitation. When the Hubs was faced with the prospect of losing his job, Paul drove four hours to where we lived at the time just to be with us. And then there’s the time he pulled our car out of a ditch after a snafu with AAA, or the time he helped us get rid of a mattress.
You know that phrase, “There’s something about a man in uniform”? It’s totally true.
But it’s not just that they’re super attractive. That “something” is also a little quirkiness that comes from sleep deprivation, a high-stress career, and quite frankly, close contact with some weird people. Police officers live a weird life and we, as the women who love them, do so as well.
There are a lot of weird things you deal with as a police wife… but here are nine you might be able to relate to 🙂
It’s no secret I love freezer cooking. Especially when the Squish was younger, it was often the only way dinner got on the table without making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches… which is probably what I’d eaten for both breakfast and lunch. Even now, it’s a great way to take a little pressure off if I have a busy week ahead of me. Having dinner ready in the freezer to pull out the night before that I can then “set and forget” in the crock pot gives me more time during the day to play with the baby or get other chores done. I try to plan to compile the meals when the Hubs has a day off, or even if I can just snag a few hours of help. Sometimes it’s a nap time event. But either way, in under two hours, I can get 7-14 meals prepped and only have to clean up after myself once, instead of cleaning up after each one of those 7-14 meals. I don’t honestly know how I lived before I made use of my crock pot.
Fun fact: I hate a lot of new-agey stuff.
I roll my eyes so hard when I see a lot of the example affirmations on Pinterest – “Money just flows to me”, for example. Um, really?
I mean, it’s one of those “whatever floats your boat” type things for me, but I’m a little too stubborn and too much of a concrete fact-driven thinker. It’s the same reason Hypnobirthing was a personal no-go (don’t tell me it doesn’t hurt! just tell me how to deal with the pain!)
Most days, I feel overwhelmed trying to tackle my to-do list. Budget. Pay bills. Send thank you cards. Make appointments for the Squish and the Hubs. The list goes on and on. I may be “just” a stay-at-home mom, but I often feel more like I’m running a small business. In fact, I half-jokingly put my career on Facebook as “CEO”, but there’s a lot of truth to that.
I want so badly to everything done, which makes me think I should multitask. I pay bills while I eat, I make phone calls while making food for the Squish, I try to do multiple chores at once. I do it thinking it’ll help me maximize my time during the day, but it never ends up working the way I think it will. At the end of the day, I’m exhausted, overwhelmed, unsatisfied, and, worst of all, I’ve missed opportunities to connect with my husband and my son.