|You know being married to a firefighter for almost 17 years I have seen some sad things. Been to enough funerals, heard enough bag pipes and seen enough firefighters follow caskets out of a church to last a lifetime. But yesterday it was different. I almost didn't want to blog about it because I wasn't sure what to say to do the moment justice. |
I had decided to run some errands down in Loma Linda and Redlands. I was driving home on the freeway when all of a sudden the traffic just stopped. I was annoyed at first because I was trying to get my melting grocery's home and there was no obvious reason for people to be stopping in the middle of the 10 freeway. Then I looked up. The over pass was lined with fire engines & firefighters standing on top of the engines at attention. The same went for the next over pass and the one after that, all the way up the 10 freeway. I'm not sure if everyone else realized what was going on but I knew. They were bringing another firefighter's body home to his family. One of the men from the Hot Shots team killed two weeks ago. The fireman do this as a sign of respect. For their lost brother, to his family and friends left behind. To some it may seem like a small gesture or pointless after the fact. It hit me like a ton of bricks. I just started crying and couldn't stop.
At the cost of sounding cold or heartless I gotta tell you; I don't give the day to day thought of what Dan does to much thought. I can't. I'm to busy trying to figure out how to be alone most of the week and raise two kids. I'm taking care of home and life here. I don't get to complain when he calls home or fill his head with drama because he can't deal with our "stuff" and be present there for days. We have to just "deal." It's just who our family is. We know holidays together aren't a sure thing. Birthdays will be missed and events will be attended solo or cancelled if he gets called out.
We realize that fire season is when the Santa Ana's come and that means less daddy/husband time. We understand & accept as a family unit that this is the job God has called Dan too and that means we sacrifice so he can help others.
We count on and fully expect God to use him when he's away. We know we are on our own when it comes to middle of the night illnesses, injury's, things that break in the home, etc. But when a firefighter is killed at work or dies from a work related illness you pause. As a wife you pause and breath deep into your husbands pillow for his scent and pray selfishly that it is never your husband who they are standing on a freeway over pass keeping watch. You realize that these men died not kissing their wife and kids good bye that morning because they had not seen them in days. That's how we role. Dealing with stuff in chunks of time as they come and go for days. Hoping you kissed them and said you loved them as they left in the early morning hour for their time away.
I'm not complaining. I love my life. I know God called me to this. It's just a pause. A pause to remember it's a crazy life. It's not for everyone. It's a reminder to not take for granted even the smallest amount of time we have here before Jesus returns. To point everyone we meet to the Lord by loving them so they know where they are going when it's time. A pause to remind myself that I can do this crazy life. Not alone but with the Lord and the village of people we have around us who love us.