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F is for Firefighters – Guest Post

April 28, 2010

Being married to a (volunteer) firefighter is not easy: beeper pages and ambulance texts at 3 am, waiting for hours until Ben comes home safe, giving up quiet nights and “us” time because they need Ben’s help at this function or that training … and so on.

It’s been over a year since Ben joined the fire company, and I still find myself swallowing my pride and selfishness whenever he’s gone for long periods of time.

Being a firefighter runs through Ben’s veins; the desire is as big a part of his heritage as his beautiful blue eyes and short, stubby nose. His father spent a large portion of his life, and his grandfather has been involved (and still is) since the beginning of time.

Last Saturday, we went to the annual fire company banquet. I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised – my expectations and assumptions of what the night would be were exceeded by leaps and bounds. And even though I’m just the “wife,” I loved the feeling of being part of such an important element of our community. I was overwhelmed with pride for Ben, my two cousins, and close friends who give their time for others. Though it’s partially to blame on the open bar — I have to admit — I was feeling a bit sappy.

One of the best parts of the night was winning a blue embroidered t-shirt from the raffle – because I’ve wanted one for months now, and I love me some free stuff!

All kidding aside, I am by no means trying to whine that being with a firefighter has its tough times. Instead, I say it to realize that as a firefighter’s wife, I have a crucial part to play as well: supporting both Ben and the other guys as much as possible. Sometimes I forget how important it is to my husband to be able to tell me about what he does, what he sees, and what he experiences. (If you knew how bad Ben is at telling stories, you’d understand why I can overlook this.)

In addition to emotional support, apparently my appointed role in the fire company is “Volunteer Betty Crocker.” And you know what? I’m A-Okay with that.

About Jenn of South of Sheridan: Writer, wife, penguin-fanatic and “crippled kid,” looking at this crazy world through a pair of sarcastic brown eyes and a power wheelchair. Proud owner of three-attention-addicted cats, two un-trainable dogs, and one Irish-tempered, newlywed husband, named Ben.