Many times I turn a blind eye when it comes to the types of calls my hubby gets dispatched to. Not because I want to be ignorant about the true danger that he’s constantly surrounded by, but because I need to stay strong for my son and I. Being a paranoid mess is never good for anybody. Recently I was recommended a movie called END OF WATCH. It was a realistic portrayal of a day in the life of LAPD’s finest. The opening monologue was instantaneously captivating. Within the first 10 minutes of the movie I looked over at my husband with concerned eyes because it was painfully obvious how accurate this faux documentary was. Hands down the movie was thrilling, funny, heart-wrenching, and to us civilians, jaw-dropping. At the end of the movie I was silent and secretly wiping away my tears as the next words I heard haunted me for the next couple of hours…”Wow, I feel like I was just at work.” As a wife of an officer, you never desire to dwell on the dangers of the job, but in that moment, I did. My “ignorance is bliss” motto quickly escaped me. I became sad, fearful, concerned and slightly anxious…the same feeling I have when I hear about an officer losing his life in the line of duty. What it did do for me was give me a new understanding and appreciation. I now understand why he’s in certain moods throughout the day. I understand why he has to leave his soul at home. I understand why his tolerance for people has dwindled. I understand why he needs a hug immediately when he gets home. I appreciate his willingness to help strangers. I appreciate him going out of his way to protect our community from people who should not be intermingled with society. I appreciate his strength and composure when he gets cursed at and spit on for simply doing his job.
I now pray a different prayer and love him in a new way because I never know when our last hug goodbye will be.
“I am the police, and I’m here to arrest you. You’ve broken the law. I did not write the law. I may disagree with the law but I will enforce it. No matter how you plead, cajole, beg or attempt to stir my sympathy. Nothing you do will stop me from placing you in a steel cage with gray bars. If you run away I will chase you. If you fight me I will fight back. If you shoot at me I will shoot back. By law I am unable to walk away. I am a consequence. I am the unpaid bill. I am fate with a badge and a gun. Behind my badge is a heart like yours. I bleed, I think, I love, and yes I can be killed. And although I am but one man, I have thousands of brothers and sisters who are the same as me. They will lay down their lives for me and I them. We stand watch together. The thin-blue-line, protecting the prey from the predators, the good from the bad. We are the police.“
-from End of Watch