It is rare that you will find me speechless.
I majored in English in college. I thrived on writing papers and would rather research and write a ten-page paper over taking a one hour final any day of the week. If I had something to say in class, I spoke up. My internship consisted almost solely of writing mini-stories, about 75% of which were about Disney World, and each one had to be unique. I’m not often accused of being quiet. But today I have found myself without many words.
Today there is no funny meme, no pun. I don’t have it in me. Last night, I sat in bed while Señor snored in his blissfully unaware state next to me, and watched horror unfold before my eyes.
I first received a breaking news alert that 10 officers had been shot during a peaceful protest in Dallas. I then read that 4 had been killed, the other 6 injured. The numbers this evening read as follows: 5 officers dead, 7 officers injured, and 2 civilians also sustained injuries. As a veteran LEOgf (Law Enforcement Officer girlfriend) I thought I was used to these stories by now. Typically my heart hurts for a few seconds, I say a prayer for the family, and I go about my day, thanking God for once again keeping my Señor safe. Last night, however, I began to weep. I quietly moved to the bathroom so as not to wake my sleeping LEO, as he had to get up in 4 hours to start his shift. I sat there weeping for the officers, their families, and our blue family. I mostly wept because I knew that in 4 hours, I had to let Señor leave me, to go serve and protect a community that, for the most part, does not respect him or his profession. They do not care if he finishes his shift, tired but alive. They do not care if he comes home to his family. They do not care, and so I wept harder.
By the grace of God, I have been given girlfriends who understand this life, this side of the line. I have been given sisters in blue – near and far – and we have each other to lean on when we do not want to add one more thing to the plate our LEOs are so delicately balancing. Without them, I would surely be lost. As we exchanged desperate messages, “Dallas sisters, please check in when you are able” or just a simple “How are you?”, I received only a modicum of comfort.
Those of us who love a police officer, we have a simple rule: Don’t read the comments. Unfortunately, I get caught up in the comments a lot. I’m a hopeless optimist – I’m always on the lookout for the people who support law enforcement, or at least have a logical & rational way of thinking about situations involving police officers. Over the past 24 hours, I have seen people condoning the attacks on the Dallas officers. I have seen people justify this attack. I have received more breaking news alerts, letting me know that our men & women in blue have been targeted all over the nation today, specifically because of the uniform they have to put on for work. I have seen these things, and I have wept multiple times today.
I do not condone rogue, power hungry, racist police officers. I fully acknowledge that these men & women in uniform exist, and I am here to tell you that we, the majority of the blue family, are not those officers or the people who love them. I am a white female dating a Mexican police officer and we do not condone or respect those people.
Today is a result of hundreds of years of people forgetting how to love, how to be compassionate, and how to forgive.
Today was the hardest day I’ve had yet as a LEOgf, and sadly I have only been in this life for 2 years. Yet, despite this week’s events, I am still an optimist. I have no choice, since my youngest stepson strives to be like his Papi when he grows up, and I have to mend this broken heart someway, somehow, if he is going to one day enter the force.
I beg of you – if you must use your words, choose them carefully. Otherwise, no words are best. Love one another.