Saturday, July 26, 2008

Loving an LEO

This is a repost from when I first became a member of PWO back in March (?). Wow! It's been a long time. But I think this post is a really poignant one in relation to what I am trying to support by supporting HUGS:

For those of you who are not cop lingo inclined, LEO stands for law enforcement officer.

Over the past few weeks I have talked about my disdain for the unappreciative community that my wonderful LEO has to work in, but I also forgot to talk about how much I appreciate the things he does.

As a new member of PWO (Police Wives Online), I have started to share in the strong, supportive community of women who are "Bound by the Badge." It's an amazing group of women, some new to the idea of law enforcement, some seasoned veterans, that come together to encourage one another in their unfailing love for their LEOs.

The hardest part of loving an LEO is withstanding the recounting of the awful stories he too often has to tell. Standing by while your loved one is hurting is a hard job, many times it goes unnoticed. But in the oasis at PWO, you can get the kind of advice and comfort that you can't get from even close friends who don't understand the fear, loneliness, and longing that can come with loving someone who is bound to serve their community.

After an eye-opening argument with her LEO, one of PWOs members, Willoe, had this to say:

"The blinders have been lifted. I have to come to realize many things in the last few years. To my surprise many of those realizations should have been common knowledge to me.

"I have come to know such words as valor, honor, dignity, integrity, pride, bravery. And that those words are not just kinds thought of brave soldiers lost, but that those are the words of our own streets. Our modern day heroes.

"In the everyday life, one has seemed to overlook the souls who watch over us diligently each day. The ones that protect our streets and come to our safety when called. These special souls are the most giving and unselfish people one could know. It is often overlooked at how much they really do give, and more often viewed as what society deems monsters.

"But it is also that same society that puts these souls in danger each and every day. Robberies, and domestics, and even a simple innocent traffic stop can cause harm to our law enforcement officers. Every second there are dangers that can maim, kill, and change a life forever.

"In the last year, I have become part of this family, across the globe. I have learned that it is not a job that one person holds in a family. It is constant work of each and every individual in the family.

"I have traded in romantic dinners, and special nights for the honor of knowing that he has saved lives, that he has stopped rapes, and taken criminals off the street so you and I can sleep safely.

"I have come to realize watching him put on his Kevlar vest each day before work, that you never know what life will bring... And that a dollar earned can kill. Each day as he leaves the house, I breathe a little more shallow, and when he arrives home, I can finally take that deep breath again, knowing he is safe after another days work.

"I have realized in the last year that I am selfish. I want him home safe with me. But I know his job is out there protecting us each day. I have come to realize that there is no such thing as 'time off' now. Even though the uniform may hang on the closet door, that oath is in his heart and withheld each and every second.

"I, too, have come to realize that although it may be hard. Saving lives, and making a difference does come before a kiss goodnight.

" know what? Even though it may be the most difficult thing that I have ever endured in my life, being with a law enforcement officer has given me more pride than my heart can even hold. It has become our way of life...I now walk that thin blue line....and I'll continue to walk that thin blue line with my head held high while holding the hand of one very brave, honorable, man that I can call my own."

There are so many times in our relationship where I wondered if we would have the strength as a couple to last through his job as an LEO. I have found, however, that the way I feel for him could never be overshadowed by any emotion, even fear. I am so proud of him, and I couldn't imagine living any other way.

It's because of women like the ones that I have come to know and love on PWO that I know supporting HUGS is a worthy cause.


Aubrey said...

We wear the invisible badge, don't we?

MJ said...

Oh yes. And sometimes and invisible gun, lol.

SarahM said...

sometimes the gun is not so invisible miss .38 :)

its hard to remember that he is serving a greate good, when sometime swe just want him serving us breakfast in bed :P it takes a special person to be the other half of an leo couple, and heres to having more strength than you knew you could have!