I am a police wife. I refuse to live in fear because of what he does for a living. This is more than a job, it is his calling. He doesn’t wear the badge lightly. He feels the weight of it on his chest even when he is not wearing it. He works hard because of what he sees every day, from a drunk driver putting families in danger, to drug addicts selling their kid’s food to support their habits, to dead bodies with no loved ones to mourn them, to teenage girls convinced to run away with their boyfriend because they don’t like their parents’ rules and ending up hurt, (or worse), to elderly people robbed and beaten for a few dollars, to babies dying at the hands of people who should love and protect them…do you want me to go on? It gets so much worse.
But I refuse to live in fear because that’s no kind of life. Because when he took his oath to protect and serve, I promised to support and love. I promised to trust his brothers and sisters to care the way he does and to help him and protect him on the job, just as he does for them. I agreed to share him with strangers. I agreed to sacrifice family events, holidays, anniversaries, and peace of mind for the sake of his calling and the people he serves.
But the headlines the last few days are terrifying.
Two police officers executed in NYC yesterday.
An officer in Florida shot and killed this morning.
An off-duty officer in Liverpool, UK attacked and killed two days ago.
I am outraged. But no celebrities are.
I can’t breathe. But famous athletes don’t seem bothered.
I want justice. But I don’t see any politicians demanding it.
And yet, when his next shift rolls around, I’ll kiss him and tell him to please be safe, just like I always do. I’ll pray for him to get the chance to make a difference for someone, just like I always do. I’ll pray that someone or something will encourage him and remind him why he does this thankless job, just like I always do. And I’ll pray that he doesn’t face a situation where he has to make a split second decision which means life or death for him or someone else. Just like I always do. Because this is his calling. Because, like him, I hate the injustice, the danger, the ugliness of those who care about nothing but themselves. That’s what most crime is, after all, selfishness.
When his shift ends, I’ll be waiting, thankful when he comes home to us. And then I’ll do it all again.
Because that’s my calling.
The world may not say so, but police lives matter. ALL lives matter.