A Firefighter Wife’s Irrational Fear of the Pole Hole

by | Fire Family Life, Kids and Family, Worry and Fear

Why does this harmless pole freak out this sane and rational fire wife?

Why does this harmless pole freak out this sane and rational fire wife?

At my husband’s station, the kitchen and sleeping areas are upstairs.  So of course the fastest route to the trucks is down the pole.   This is in an approximately 10×10 room with heavy duty commercial doors on opposite sides of the room entering from either the kitchen or the bunk room.


So let me set the stage.  I’m not a wussy girl.  I’ve done some pretty spectacular mountain biking in my day (no, I am not talking about in Ohio but on real mountains.  Yes North Carolina but more impressively, in the Swiss Alps.)  I’ve jumped off of rock cliffs into deep lakes in Alabama.  And I’ve been a roller coaster thrill seeker.   But when I go to the firehouse and go anywhere near the pole hole, my heart races like an agoraphobe who needs to take a trip to the doctor.

What is the blame for this irrational fear?  Motherhood.

I met my firefighter when I was a divorced single mama with a just turned 2 year old boy.  We loved visiting the station with the big slide down to the trucks.  Take us there everyday!  But the pole hole Freaked. Me. Out.

Every new mom has these fears that flash through their brain of what terrible events can happen to their children, especially new infants when mama is still quite post-partum and hormonally influenced.   Some Mom’s literally visualize their babies heads snapping off their wobbly neck (I’m not making this up.  Read it on BabyCenter forums when I was post partum!)

My fear has always been stairs (and escalators but I’ll leave that for another post).  Carrying my new born babies down stairs was so anxiety inducing for me I would frequently sit down and scoot on my bottom.   No matter how hard I tried, I kept visualizing myself slipping and falling and dropping the baby down the stairs.  This has sense improved and I only feel a moment of panic if I have some loose footing on a step here or there.  Still makes my heart skip a beat!

But back to the pole hole…..

I must have suffered 100 mini-heart attacks every time one of my tipsy toddlers have dashed towards the pole hole door over the past decade.

Yes, I realize there is no way a 2 or 3 or even 4 year old is able to open those heavy industrial doors but I just can’t help myself.   Now, as our kids are getting older and able to actually slide down the pole (with close supervision!) I keep the youngest ones wrapped up tight in my boa constrictor hold while we watch crunched in the corner.  (I’m really not exaggerating and my husband will agree with that description.)

I’m working myself into a panic just writing this.  Gah!  Well, I guess if I have to have a fear of something, this is one I’ll take over others.  It’s just plain silly.   And in case you are wondering, no I have never slid down that crazy pole myself.  Probably should to break some of this fear but

There is no way in the world I’m leaving my unattended children leaning precariously over that ginormous hole watching me slide all the way down.

And I leave you with this view of the aforementioned ominous pole hole.  Now do you see what I mean?  It’s practically read to leap out of the picture and swallow a small child.

2013-03-02 19.28.42

Firefighter Wife Terrorized by Vicious Pole Hole

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On a mission to be and inspire us all to be better humans, to strengthen fire families & marriages, to nurture and encourage fire wives, do "good business" in all areas of my life and of course, love on my 4 kids.

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  1. Micah Whitehead

    This post made my day! Glad to know Im not the only nervous nelly and I have TEENAGERS!!

  2. Mindee Woodward

    Our stations that actually have poles have these covers under them that take 100 lbs to open and gates. You can open them by pushing down on the pole, but it takes a lot to do it that way. I love it because even if my daughter wanted to go down the pole, she couldn’t. So a crawling baby would be “caught” by the little cover. It’s nice. Or else, I’m not gonna lie. My mommy heart might freak out a little!

  3. Lindsey Acciarito

    Girl. You should see the pole hole at my FF’s station – they don’t use it anymore and it’s in a little closet in the scary part of their 1940s firehouse. It’s all covered in cobwebs and jiggly. Initiation for new FFs at the station is that you must climb UP the pole to get your number. He keeps trying to get me to go down it but it is terrifying to me!!!!! (which makes no sense because I’ve rappelled down a 22 story building, gone skydiving multiple times and been hang gliding)

  4. CA FF Fiancé

    Understandable. Love this site & the articles! But, in regards to your article, in our litigious city/state (CA), only FF can go up to the bunks/upstairs areas now and only FF can come down the poles. They’re actually dangerous for even our FF too if not done right. So your fear is legit – for everyone. Me? I wouldn’t do it either. I say leave it to the professionals. 😉


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