I am the wife of an Adams County Deputy Sheriff.
My husband is different. He changed. I knew this job would change him, but I didn’t know it would change me, too.
I was 8 months pregnant with our first child when he was sworn in. He was so handsome and I was so proud of him in his uniform, but I couldn’t help but laugh when it came time to pin on his badge for the first time. It was something I had been nervous about it for days and the time had finally come. He waited patiently for almost a full minute before he took it from my hands and pinned it on himself. My husband rescued me, because that’s what he does. He takes everyone else’s burdens upon himself.
He’s been a deputy for 9 years. The changes came almost immediately. Some were subtle. Some I could see right away. Like the change I noticed just last Friday after he came home from attending the funeral for Deputy Heath Gumm. That was really hard for him. Physically, mentally, and emotionally.
I have never seen my husband so tired.
As the wife of a law enforcement officer, I take on the over flow. My husband, God bless him, doesn’t tell me half of what he sees, hears, or does on a daily basis. He knows it would change me, just like it’s changed him. I would be willing to bet that the wives of Deputies Zack Parrish, Heath Gumm, and Micah Flick know exactly what I’m talking about. Our husbands protect us, because that’s just what they do.
I have spoken with other wives of deputies and the events over the last month and a half have shaken us all to our cores.
Some of us choose to block out the danger our spouses face on a daily basis. Some of us mentally prepare every day. Either way, a death will force you to confront those emotions immediately.
Me, I’m a blocker. Or I was until we got the news about Deputy Gumm. I knew from that moment on that things were going to be very different for awhile. I had to think about what his wife was going through and about what I would feel, think, and do in her situation. My God, that was scary and it still is. But I can be strong, too. Just in a different way than my husband.
So, my promise to you, my husband, is this:
I will take it on for you, my love. I will make certain that you know you are loved and safe here at home. I will understand when you lose your temper over something trivial. I will wrap my arms around you when you need me to be the strong one. I will walk that thin blue line with you, until you say to stop. You are my love, my life, and my hero and I couldn’t be more proud to be your wife.