Yesterday I had one of those scary police wife experiences that you never want to have.
I should begin by explaining how Hubby Blue has explained to ME the way I would be notified if something were to ever happen to him while he's working. Because we live so far from where he works, his department would contact the department where we live and someone in our town would come notify me and take me to him (or at least part way). I'm not sure if it's like that in every department, but just so we're all on the same page (and because I know there are people who aren't law enforcement spouses who read this too!), that's how it works.
So, Hubby Blue was supposed to be getting off work at 2:00 pm yesterday, and I happened to look at the clock at about 2:05 and thought to myself that he should be calling any minute now. No joke, the doorbell literally rang as soon as I thought that. That's odd, I thought. Who could be ringing the doorbell? Clearly I didn't think it could be one of our friends because, um, we don't have any friends in our town.
As soon as I had that thought, I looked out our kitchen window, and what do I see? A county sheriff's office police car parked across the street.
I kid you not: my heart literally stopped.
(Now, I want to stop right here and say that if something HAD actually happened to Hubby Blue yesterday, I would not be blogging about it today, nor would I drag out the story like this. So if you're holding your breath, you can let it out.)
I immediately thought to myself, No, no, no, this cannot be happening to me, as I pretty much ran to the front door. I had Christmas music playing on the TV turned up way loud and I didn't even stop to turn it down. If I was getting the worst news possible, I wanted it as soon as possible.
I checked to see that it was indeed someone from the sheriff's office standing on my porch and I whipped that door open so fast you wouldn't believe it.
"I'm looking for Michael So-and-So?" the officer said.
Annnnd my heart started beating again.
I realized he was holding papers and was probably looking to serve paperwork to this person and was obviously reassured, but my heart was still going crazy. I didn't even think to tell him that I'm married to a cop and that him simply showing up on my doorstep made all the most feared thoughts in my head come roaring to life. There was nothing wrong with him, he was very polite, but I was so happy to shut the door and see his squad car pull away a few minutes later. It sounds silly, but the longer he sat out there, the longer I feared he would come back and give me some horrible news.
I realized I was sweating profusely and my heart was STILL pounding!
I didn't calm down a little until I called Hubby Blue and told him what had just happened. He obviously understood my panicked reaction. I have read things written by other police wives who say they dread every time the doorbell rings while their husband is working or who are conscious of what they wear to bed when their husband works the night shift because you never know when you might have to open the door. I had just kind of forgotten about those things. Those were the things that scared me the most when we were first starting out on this journey of becoming a police family, and in the day-to-day grind, it's easy to just start going through the motions. Additionally, in the last two months that HB has been on FTO, aside from Halloween, I've never had the doorbell ring while he's been working. But now...I have a feeling I too will dread every doorbell ring when Hubby Blue is gone.
Having this experience today just reminded me how life can change in an instant. You better believe I gave him a great big hug the second he got home! So, to my fellow police wives out there, whether you are a veteran at this or just starting out like me, please take my humble experience to heart and don't ever let your officer leave you on a negative note. Tell him you love him and hug him and be grateful for him and don't sweat the small stuff. Apologize when you are wrong. Make things right even when you're not wrong. You never know if you'll get a second chance.