Monday, September 17, 2007

A Policeman's Wife - Support Behind the Badge

My name is Sarah, and I live in a small town in Oklahoma. I have been married for 4 1/2 years to Dusty, a police officer. I am a recent stay-at-home mom due to the birth of our son, Cayson, who is now 4 months old.

I have been asked how I feel about my husband’s profession in a dangerous field. To be honest, I try to block out the dangerous part. I like to think of his job as a job he loves, where he gets to do "all kinds of fun things." I think that if I dwell on the unsafe aspect, I will become consumed with worry. Deep down, I know that anything could happen and he faces all kinds of situations. I have to trust God to protect him and trust Dusty to make the right decisions. I pray constantly for his safety and that he will be able to focus and think clearly when facing situations that arise.

On the opposite spectrum, I get aggravated when people say, "Oh, at least your husband is a police officer in a town where it is a pretty safe job." Those people have no idea what he faces and the crimes that do go on in our "safe" town. He faces situations where the outcome could be devastating. Nobody knows what someone who is high on methamphetamine will do when facing the possibility of jail. There are so many officers that are killed on routine calls where the unexpected happened.

One of my friends whose husband is a police officer recently responded to a routine vandalism call. Things quickly got out of control, and he ended up shooting and killing a man in order to protect himself and his partner. My husband and I have talked about these types of situations, and he has already made the decision that he would shoot and kill someone in an instant if it meant he would come home to his family. His number one priority is coming home alive and protecting his co-workers and the innocent.

Before our son was born, my only concern if something happened to my husband at work was myself. Now I have a helpless baby to protect and nurture. I hate to think of what I would do if something devastating affected our family, but I know I would be stronger now that I am a mom. Being a mom brings out the protectiveness and an inner strength that I did not have before.

My husband has contemplated switching careers to a safe 8-5 job with weekends off. Now that we have a child, he would love to be home on weekends and be able to spend more time with us. I just know that he loves his job, and I think sitting behind a desk or doing routine aspects of an 8-5 job would bore him. I have chosen to accept his career because it makes him happy.
How do you cope with your husband’s dangerous career choice? Have life experiences affected how you view his job?

Sarah, Oklahoma Police Officer’s Wife

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