Sunday, July 26, 2009

Late again...

**please note. After I wrote this whole post I realized: this may not be a post for you to read if you really worry about your husband's safety in law enforcement. I am pretty honest about my fears and if reading about them will get your fears going, just skip to the last paragraph, or skip this post altogether. There'll be other ones soon, I promise!**

Hero's Wife at The Daily Chase posted her first blog entry today about her husband's first day on the job. She mentioned what we all know as something not unusual -- husband came home late. The accompanying fear that goes along with that is something that many wives of first responders are also highly aware of. I'll get back to that in a second (the fear part). I haven't commented on it yet, but Renee over at LAPD Wife had a recent post which made me laugh out loud because she hit the nail on the head, and it's something I have a really difficult time explaining to all my "civilian" friends: There is always a Plan A (with husband) and Plan B (without husband).

So that's two people who have recently talked about having their husband come home late from work. With that fresh in my mind, guess what happened to me today? Husband was ONE HOUR late coming home, and I didn't hear anything from him. For us, this is highly unusual. If it gets to be half an hour late, he will call or text me to let me know "I'm going to be late." This makes me chuckle of course because, honey, you're ALREADY late. :) But I'm always very very grateful to know that he is OK, just late. When it gets to be one hour late and I haven't heard anything, I call him... and no response means I'm calling dispatch to find out where you are and reporting your sorry self for being an AWOL husband!! (just kidding, I have never done that last part.)

This morning as the minutes were ticking by, I didn't really notice because all three children were awake earlier than I'd like them to be and we were getting ready for the day with our usual level of chaos. The odd thing is, I had actually gotten up even earlier than them, taken a shower & washed my hair (don't fall over!), gotten dressed and was ready *before* them. This is a huge deal, as anyone with three children (one of them being a 2.5 month old) can tell you. :) But every once in a while as I kept checking the clock, I wondered if it was *not* a coincidence that I was awake and ready for the day early. I was actually waiting for a knock or phone call to tell me something had happened to Hubs, and it was God's way of looking out for me that I wouldn't have to stress over one more thing -- being in my pj's -- when I heard from someone at the door that my husband was injured/maimed/killed.

Well, good thing husband walked in just as I was getting ready to call his AWOL self so all of the worrying and reporting was quickly forgotten. It was simply another chance to lay aside my fears for The Big Guy Upstairs to take care of. "Simply" is surely not the best choice of words because as we all know, it's not a "simple" thing to do. In some ways I am always grateful for these types of little "worry" reminders because I move along to things such as: Does he know I love him? Am I loving him and our family moment by moment instead of waiting for something bigger and better to come along in our future? Are his "end of watch" papers in order? Can I get some more life insurance on him? (ha ha) You know... all those things that are easy to kind of brush off to the side when you don't necessarily have death staring you in the face on a regular basis as many first responders do. While death is certain and life is not, as a culture we often act as if it is life that is certain and death that is uncertain. I don't want to take my man or my family for granted. Don't you do it either! :)


Leah said...

Thank you so much for the post. God is wonderful when fears like this appear. We just have to turn to Him to take that fear away! Life is good, continue to live it without taking it for granted!

Meadowlark said...

I honestly think I've only worried about Husband's safety ON-DUTY once or twice.

That said, OFF-DUTY? I'm a wreck. Snowmobiling? Poker with the guys? River rafting? I worry constantly as soon as the "I'll be home by..." time has passed. That's the one area of our life where "it's only 5 (30, 90) minutes" doesn't cut it.

You're right in that we can only try to live our life as we're called and make sure our loved ones know they're loved.

copswife said...

I have only rarely gotten worried about my hubs coming home late. But that is because, until Aug. 1 (counting the days) he will have been on straight nights for almost 2 years. I'm sleeping so I never even know when he is late.

911 and the Randomness.. said...

Wow, that is so true. I've been married to my Man for 2 years and it never fails, late agian!
Always let God do the worrying. My only preperation is knowing the injury/death policy where my Man and I work. it's nice to know what will happen if the worst happens.

The Dispatcher and Her Officer said...

Meadowlark.. your cute!!!

I can honestly say I don't worry, much! My cell ringer is always turned off and my home phone ringing is on. When he used to work nights, he texted me all thru the night about everything so when I woke up I had a whole story of his day! When he needed to get me .. he called the home phone.

Now on days.. He texts me as soon as he is on a call that doesn't look promising.

But totally agree - He never get's home at the same time each day!!! But then again.. Neither do I!

Natalie said...

I can relate, yet again! I'd have to agree with Meadowlark though that it's off-duty activities that keep hubby from coming home when he says he will more often than not.

He doesn't call when he's late because he intends to be on his way home "soon," so we still struggle with that. Time to get on him again!

KD said...

So funny that you worry about him more off duty than on. I guess my hubs just has really boring hobbies so there's nothing for me to worry about. :)

Technically I'm probably worse about informing him when I'm going to be home/gone than he is... that's because he's always sleeping when I am out and about, so I don't call so as not to wake him. Then when he wakes up, he's wondering "where is everybody??" :)