I am a First Responder Wife

I started as a Military Wife, when I married a Sailor.  I then became a First Responder Wife, when he became a fireman. I am a first responders wife. 

I came home to finish college while he finished his time in the military and was deployed.  I did not want to be a military mom away from my family, neither did he (military dad). What he wanted to be was a fireman in NYC. So he left the military and became a fireman. This lead to a whole new schedule and routine, and truthfully there are days I feel the military would have been easier. The schedule and routine would have been more manageable.

If you are a first responder wife, I am sure you will understand. Share the same frustrations, complaints and joys.

After being in a long distance marriage for over a year, I was very independent and had my routines. School, work, weekends even with pets, I managed it all.  Had fun with friends and family and traveling to see my love when he was in the states on weekends.   Once in the fire department, I had him back with me and a new routine to get used to.  I was still able to sleep in when I could and I had two to three nights a week alone still.  Those nights, I caught up on my TV shows, worked late, met friends or just relaxed.  During the days I commuted to work, taught, attended meetings and drove home. Holidays were done with respected families, and missing them for work wasn't a big deal.  I even said work so the guys with kids could be home for Christmas, Halloween and others.  We made everything work and our time off together really "off".
While deployed I could squeeze his arm and hear Tim's voice

Change came, KIDS:
Suddenly juggling a baby, work and my husbands schedule that changed daily/weekly/monthly made life difficult.  This Mom runs the house, we have missed several holidays and firsts together, many nights of tears before bed and questions, lots of questions. Sick days are hard, a lot falls on me, bandaids, car rides, birthday parties, school obligations and more.  Kids also brought JOY to our house. Their daddy is their HERO. They look up to him like a superhero. They talk about him like a superhero, and they visit him as if its Marvel headquarters. Always wanting to bring their friends to see him.

Once they saw him in action, for the first time my heart ached "make sure my daddy comes home safe" my 4 year old told the EMT standing nearby.  They understand the unmentional.  This is another possibility, one we don't speak of by always think about.  The kids play us, when its mom only night, they go to bed, sleep, and its early.  If we are both home? We need one more kiss, one more hug, bathroom break and sip of water. They have our fireman wrapped around their tiny fingers.  They are good! Days off don't exist. There may be no work, but the kids are up. they need meals at a normal time.

Empty Nest Dreams/Goals:
Retirement?  Does anyone retire in 20 years? Can we even afford it at 40 years old when kids would be just in their teens and starting high school?  Do more years at work? Wait until college, after college? Then travel, I mean our goals were always to travel, or move to Utah or Montana. Our dreams, after the stress.  I don't know what I would do sleeping next to someone 7 nights a week. How do people do it? Retirement will be a huge adjustment, for now its a dream.

As a first responder wife, I do have fears-  Will he come home, get hurt, and what if something horrible happens?  But if I dwell, I wouldn't be able to leave the house or deal.  So I spend time thinking about the good stuff, I think about the future, and I think about everything being okay.  That's the sacrifice we make for our spouses.


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