I'm the wife of the paramedic responsible for the shooter's medical care en-route to the hospital. We have ALL been shaken to our very roots because of this tragedy. As the wife of a Paramedic/FF for the City of Memphis, I carry the fear of losing my husband to circumstances and forces beyond my control every day that he leaves for his shift. I face the possibility of becoming a widow. I face the chance that I may never see his smile, hear his laugh, taste his kiss, or feel his arms around me again. I am asked over and over to love him enough to support his decision to do what he does for a living. His job is the love of his life-it brings him joy. He has never wanted to do or be anything else.
So how do I tell him about the ice cold blood running through my veins when I hear the sirens? How do I explain the breath-choking fear when I know there is a fire? How do I make him understand the mind-numbing, soul-wrenching, heart-stopping terror that washes over me when I hear "man down"? I know that he would listen. I know that he wants me to talk to him about how I feel. I also know that he wouldn't understand--not from my perspective. He has enough to take care of while he's at work; he doesn't need my fears in the back of his mind while he does what makes him happy.
I love my husband and I have tremendous pride for what he does and the utmost respect for him and all the brothers and sisters of his profession. But I feel there is a need that goes unaddressed every time there is an incident.
The spouses-the ones at home praying with all their heart and soul that everyone goes home the next morning.
That is why I propose starting a "Memphis Fire Dept. Spouse Club" (or group or committee etc.)
We've been in Memphis for almost two years now and I don't know very many of the wives or husbands of members of the dept. The Fire dept. has a wonderful reputation for the lengths that it will go to in order to assure that its family is taken care of, I'm suggesting that we extend the family somewhat. I think that as the spouses of the dept. members we have a lot to offer; to each other, to our spouses, and to the community.
If you're interested in becoming more of an extended family, please contact me and I will arrange our first meeting. We can decide together where to go from here.
E-mail boothbys@bellsout.net or
(901)383-2169 and ask for Arleen
Please keep the families of the fallen men in your prayers even after the commotion settles--because "but for the grace of God go I".