It’s 5:00. The babysitter is on her way, you’re all dressed up, and now all you have left to do is wait for your husband to get home from work.
You’re so excited for this date night. Things have been rough, and you’ve needed some time together, not to mention some time away from the kids and your normal responsibilities.
That’s when you get the text: he’s cancelling again because he got held up at work. Again. He says it looks like it’s going to be an all-nighter.
You sigh, call the babysitter to tell her the plans have changed, change back into more comfortable clothes, and hope the kids go to bed easily tonight, because you’re just so not in the mood to put up with any crankiness or whining. You spend the rest of the evening fuming.
Does this sound at all familiar?
Being married to a police officer means that, very often, things don’t go the way you planned them. In this post, I talked about how important it is to be flexible as a LEO wife, and this is one of the reasons why. The police are needed when they’re needed, and not much can change that.
If you’re as type A as I can be, flexibility doesn’t come naturally… at all. I’ve had to really work to develop this quality, and it’s still a struggle. When situations like this come up, I have to force myself to think about a few things to keep me patient and in good spirits.
He really does. He’d give anything for you. It’s one reason he works so hard, why he volunteers for overtime opportunities. He wants to take care of you and give you everything you want and need.
If you’re struggling to remember that, think about the last time he did something nice for you. Remember the ways he serves you, even if they’re just small things between shifts. Does he always do the dishes when you ask, or toss in a load of laundry when he walks in the door? Maybe he just listens to you venting after hard days, even if he’s had a hard day himself.
I guarantee if you look for them, you’ll realize he does more for you than you initially thought.
If you’re looking for ways he shows he loves you, make sure you have his love language (affiliate link) in mind. For example, if you know his love language is physical touch, then think of the times he holds your hand, kisses you, or wraps his arms around you, because that’s him showing how much he loves you.
As much as you were looking forward to this date night, don’t feel like he wasn’t looking forward to it, too. I bet he was crushed he didn’t get to see you dressed to the nines, get to hold you, take you out, and connect with you. Trust me, he would choose any of those things over the things he’s probably dealing with this evening. I promise he’s as disappointed as you are.
Remember that if there’s ever a choice, he would pick you first.
Unfortunately, he can’t pick when emergencies happen. He just has to do what he has to do, which sometimes means you get pushed to second. Unfortunately, his job is important and unpredictable… but I’d bet his job is something you’re proud of him for doing, even when it screws up date night.
If you’re frustrated that you’re constantly waiting on him for a date night and a break, why not try taking yourself out? I know, eating alone can sometimes be weird, but it can be really fun, too. Or, if you don’t want to pay for a babysitter, order in! Eat it and watch a guilty pleasure show until he comes home. Or, hey, use the time to do something indulgent, like have ice cream for dinner!
You could also plan something for when he gets home. If you like baking, you could bake a batch of cookies for the two of you to enjoy together. If he doesn’t think he’ll be home until morning, put together something special for breakfast.
Instead of getting frustrated at the change in plans, do what you can to enjoy your night anyway. I bet you can find a way to enjoy it. Attitude is everything.
It’s not easy to be patient and flexible when plans go awry, especially those you’re particularly excited about. But instead of stewing over the things you can’t change, focus on the good things. Try to focus on these three things to help deal with these moments.
I’m a twenty-something LEO wife and stay-at-home mom to a one-year-old little boy. I enjoy writing, reading, taking my son for walks and runs in the stroller, and crafting. My goal is for Love and Blues to be a resource for first responders and their families. I write about marriage and family topics, as well as about the quirks that come with being married to a man in law enforcement, firefighting, or emergency medical services.
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