When you tell people that your husband is a firefighter, there are several popular reactions from how cool, to how scary, to he must be really hot. People are so interested in the fact that he’s a firefighter and what his job actually entails, but what about the wife behind those firefighters. I wrote a post a while ago when I first started this blog about being married to a firefighter, but figured it was time to update it and share it with all of you again. So, what does it really mean to be married to someone in the fire service?
You Know You're A Firefighter’s Wife When...
You may be on the phone with your FF (firefighter) for 10 minutes, but you actually only got to talk for about 5 of those minutes because you have to stop talking mid-sentence so he can listen to the dispatcher.
You secretly love the way smoke smells. You sort of have to learn to love it cause you know the smell of a house fire can stay in his skin and hair for days!!
You're learning you can’t be as 'traditional' as you would like. There will be some years where he will work every single holiday just because of how the shifts fall and there’s nothing you can do about it.
When people hear that your husband is a Firefighter they will automatically assume you know every single Firefighter they know, like every one of them is related or friends or something.
You think its funny when people think all your Firefighter does is fight fires. They do so much more than the public realizes. They respond to every 911 call: broken bones, burns, wrecks, nosebleeds, headaches, shootings, crazy people who took too many drugs... While they aren't running calls they are doing all the maintenance around the station, cleaning the fire station, the trucks, drive around painting the fire hydrants, go to schools to teach fire safety to the kids, grocery shop, cook, go do training and take classes.
Weekends mean nothing to you. You're looking forward to 5-day break! Dan and I work fairly opposite schedules. I work 8-5 Monday through Friday and he works a 24-hour shift every third day, not including when he works additional shifts for overtime. So it’s only every third week that we get an entire weekend together. I always look forward to when he has a day off, which actually means he has 5 days off in a row.
You can bet on it, if anything will go wrong, it’s going to happen when he's on shift! (Which means he won’t be home until tomorrow morning). Dogs out of control, getting a cut and needing stitches (that happened to us the first year of marriage), car troubles, getting really sick, it will all happen while he’s gone.
You brag about your FF a lot! If there's one thing I know about my husband, it’s that he is VERY humble when it comes to his job. He will not be the one to tell people about how last night he had to do CPR on someone, or how he pulled a dog out of a house fire and put oxygen on him, or how his crew went to a call just to put out a little fire.
You wish someone would make one firefighter movie- JUST ONE- in which no firefighters die. I literally can't watch Ladder 49 without balling my eyes out!
You have ever had a heated debate over the color of fire trucks.
You know the difference between a police siren and a fire siren, or the difference between an ambulance and an engine just by the sound of the siren as they’re headed to a call.
As soon as you tell people what your husband does, they no longer care to know what you do, because their job is clearly way more interesting.
Your single friends are always asking, "Are there any single firemen at your Hubby's work?”
You've had some of the best holiday meals at the fire station.
You’ve waited around for hours after he was supposed to pick you up for a date worrying and wondering if he’s okay, only to find out later he was on a fire for 8 hours and forgot his phone to be able to let you know where he was at.
Some of your favorite pictures of the two of you are taken in front of a burning home and instead of looking terrified you look completely happy. (Note: every time I post one of these photos on social media people freak out asking why he’s not helping put out the fire)
You’ve gotten so used to the sound of his pager that you’ve slept right through calls and only woken up when he comes back home and gets back in bed.
Nearly all your friends and people you hang out with are somehow connected to the fire department.
Your neighbor’s think there must be something wrong with you because of the number of times a week an engine or ambulance is parked out in front of your home. Little do they know it’s only because your husband forgot his lunch or needed to let the dog out.
You have your own scanner app on your phone that you can turn on from anywhere to use when you hear a bunch of sirens or haven’t heard from your husband for a few hours. Some call it stalking; I call it ensuring he’s fine.
I clearly wouldn’t change a thing about who I’m married to or what he does, but being married to a firefighter can definitely have it’s benefits and challenges. Not only does my husband share a bond and a camaraderie with his fellow firefighters, but I feel that same connection and understanding with fellow fire wives. I'm thankful for the additional family I gained through being part of the fire service, and can't image it any other way.