We are married, and yet find ourselves flying solo much of the time.
We single handedly wrap presents and put together gifts, after decorating the cookies or baking the cake, andwaiting for all the kids to go to sleep. We play Santa alone and ask Jesus to be with Daddy on Christmas. We wake the kids up with the brightest Happy Birthday we can muster.
We visit Daddy at work, only to find their rig has not been there all day, or to have the tones go off after, "DAAADDDDYYY!!" is heard echoing through the bay.
We celebrate holidays at the firehouse, when we can.
We fix the leaky pipes and we dry the falling tears.
We explain to family and friends why he's not there - again.
We do all the "shushing" in church.
We make those late night trips to the ER, after calling in reinforcements to help with the other kids.
We take all the kids to the State Fair on our own, so they don't miss out on feeding the goats.
We chase after loose dogs and smiling kids playing tag.
We plan the trips to the park and keep the house quiet while Daddy is sleeping.
We fit in the grocery shopping while he's on shift, so we are there when he comes home to ask, "How was your shift, honey?"
We sleep alone. Sometimes sleep just doesn't come to us...
We make Thanksgiving dinner on our own and we carry sleeping kids back to the car after the fireworks.
We laugh with our friends on-line and miss the friends that don't return our calls because they don't understand this life.
We sit in the stands by ourselves during a downpour for our kids' games.
We keep the house from imploding and the tears from drowning out the sun.
We laugh at the kids' stories over the dinner we made together.
We tell tales of our younger years over cocoa with the kids and kiss the noses we tuck in at night.
We know that Daddy is not there, but sometimes we forget how much he would love to be there.
All the snuggles and giggles that go on without him.
...the memories that are made and then shared with him the next day.
...the bonds that made while he watches through ooVoo.
...that he misses me just as much as I miss him in the quiet of the night...when his night quiets down.
..that he doesn't have to help wrap, but he also misses out on the glow of the un-wrapping.
...that he doesn't get to share his stories with our friends at the football game on Sundays.
..that he misses seeing his son get that first carry over the goal line.
...that the music he hears from my phone, is not near as adorable and the music coming from the little ones actually on stage in front of me.
...that he would love to be in church to see how much they have grown, even though they need to be shushed now and then.
...that he hurts when he is not there to comfort the child in enough pain for me to take them to the ER.
Being married to a firefighter is not for the faint of heart. We miss him and we love him. He is a firefighter and I am his wife. We live a life that the rest of the world will never quite understand...and I would not have it any other way. I am indeed a Fire Wife.