Saturday, September 10, 2011

A Decade of Perspective - Part II

Now, ten years later my life is completely intertwined with the city of NY. I know the subway system by heart; I can interpret the unintelligible route change announcements. I’ve made friends, lost friends, had 6 apartments and 5 jobs. I've learned that I’m supposed to say something if I see something.  I’ve seen police officers with semi-automatic weapons and I know my NYPD fiancé has a biohazard suit in the trunk of the car.
During my NYC career, I've also worked at the rebuilt World Trade Center 7. Working at 7 WTC wasn't quite as awe-inspiring as you might think.  In fact, most days were pretty unremarkable and I was more likely to be annoyed by the tourists that blocked the sidewalk to take pictures than awed by the rebuilding efforts. Each time I start a new job though, I know I'll probably be issued a bright red fannypack filled with emergency PowerBars, water, burn cream and a gas mask in case of an attack. It’s not something I ever think about; to me it’s just a normal part of life.
NYC is also the place where I found my future husband and started planning for the future.
When I tell people that I am marrying a police officer, the reaction is always the same…..first they want to know if it’s anything like the cop shows on TV and then they want to know how I can handle knowing that his job is so dangerous. To answer the first question – no, it’s not anything like TV. The NYPD still uses typewriters for most of their paperwork so you can just forget about all those fancy touchscreens. 
The answer to the second question is a bit more complex. The easy response is that I just don’t think about it, but I’m not naïve either. I know he wears a bulletproof vest to work, I’m aware he can shoot a gun and I’ve heard his command voice. For the most part we just try to make light of the situation; I tease him about being a “pistol expert” and he tells me about his daily HI jinxes with his partner. 
All joking aside, it's undeniably terrifying to think that the man I love spends his days running towards danger. When it comes right down to it though, I’m also insanely proud of him. He and his colleagues are willing to do a job that takes a crazy amount of training and a ridiculous amount of courage. I love him even more for his courage and selflessness so I coudn't even imagine asking him to stop doing the job he loves.
To be continued….. 

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