I have heard all kinds of stories about women whose boyfriends/husbands are firefighters that died in the line of duty. One that always surprises me is when they get angry with their significant other for not considering them or their families when on the job.
As the girlfriend of a firefighter, I 100% disagree with how those women feel and here's why.
My boyfriend has been a firefighter for about a year and a half now and has known that it would be his career since we started dating as seniors in high school. Before he even started working for a department, I was constantly nervous about how I would feel when he was out on calls. Would I ever get over the anxiety of the possibility of him losing his life and putting it at risk with every call?
When he did finally get on a department, I was extremely nervous for the first six months or so. Then something hit me. This career was his decision. He encouraged me to attend a school six hours away from home and said doing long distance would be ok and we'd make it work. While that's not the same as running into burning buildings, he always supports me with everything I do.
Running into burning buildings, standing on the side of busy roads and climbing dangerous ladders is what he chose to do for a living. It's his calling, his way of finding his place in the world. He trains harder than anyone I've ever met and is currently studying extremely hard to become a paramedic. Saving people's lives is in his blood.
If he gives up his life to save someone else's, I will not be angry or upset. I will be proud. If I have to go to his funeral, I will be surrounded by his brothers for support and my children will know their dad was a hero. In my eyes, regardless of if he's driving the engine, working the hose or running into those houses, he is a hero. Every time the tones drop, I no longer feel anxiety. I feel a sense of pride knowing that he is there for people in their worst moments. He's the beacon of light at the end of the tunnel, the literal saving grace.
There is nothing in this world that makes me prouder of my firefighter boyfriend than the selfless job he chose. I chose him because of that selflessness and I will never regret that, regardless of the fact that he may lose his life for someone else.