This post comes to us from a member of our Fire Wife Sisterhood. It’s just one example of how a community can learn from each other and be encouraged and inspired. There are simply too many stories for us to post them all as a blog post but sometimes one stands out more than another. Lives transform in community. You become the community of people you spend the most time with. If you are looking for support in your marriage to a firefighter or want to be a cheerleader in a community that honors marriage, please consider supporting the Fire Wife Sisterhood. ~ Lori Mercer @wifeonfire
I have to share a success story. It may seem minor to some, but I have had to work hard on this for 3 years now.
Early last week my firefighter must have gone on a horrendous call that left him reeling emotionally. He came home short-tempered and quiet. For the 2 days he was off, he talked basically only when spoken to, and didn’t initiate much conversation. He was talking in his sleep a bit- enough to lead me to believe the call was a child abuse type call. I didn’t pry. I asked him after a few hours the first day if everything was all right and he sort of mumbled something as he headed into the garage to “work”- basically to occupy his mind for a bit on monotonous tasks, like organizing his tools, etc.
For the two days he was home I tried to be there to support him- extra long hugs, patience and a will to wait this out instead of force him to talk. He went to his next shift and I didn’t hear from him all shift except a response to a question I had texted him (“yes” was the reply).
Friday morning he was still quiet and I let him know I knew something was bothering him but I didn’t need to know what it was unless he wanted to talk about it, but either way I was there for him. The day passed. That night I got home from work and he had gotten his mom to take the kids for the night, we went out and met some friends at a country bar and did some line dancing. During a slow song, he pulled me onto the dance floor and during the song, apologized for how he’d been all week, he said I didn’t want to know what had been bothering him, but it was a call he had to go on and he was sorry he let it roll into his daily life at home. I told him I knew what he had to deal with had to be very upsetting and I understood that it is human nature to not be able to always shut off those feelings once you are off shift. I explained that I felt a little uneasy not knowing what I could do or say to possibly help but I just needed him to know I was there for him. He hugged me, kissed me and said that was all he needed to hear and from then on, through the weekend, he was back to his normal self.
My struggle for years has been to push and push to know what was wrong.
When he wasn’t ready to talk about it and I’d push, it would lead to an unnecessary argument over something stupid. This route was harder for me to do but so worth it. He told me Saturday that he tries really hard to “not bring his work home with him” and apologized again for the past week. Again, I just told him that he’s a hero for what he does, I am always there for him whether he wants to talk about it or not and left it at that. He seemed so much better by just having me reaffirm that to him- knowing he didn’t need to tell me about it. Prayers for the continued peace he’s found after this call and prayers for the people involved in the call too.
We are so grateful for the friendship and encouraging posts like this that the community of women in the Fire Wife Sisterhood share with each other. If there is anything about the fire life that is driving you crazy, or you just remember those days when you did it all without the support of hundreds of ladies across the country ready to send you a prayer, a hug or chocolate, then we’d love to have your support in the Fire Wife Sisterhood. The low monthly price supports our services here that honor marriage and family in the fire service.