|“I’ll see you when you get home”|
|By Officer Joseph St. Antoine|
“I’ll see when you get home.” A common phrase that is meaninglessly uttered throughout all of America. Like many of us who have families, this phrase is usually uttered right before one leaves for work. For many of us who work in the field of law enforcement or corrections, this phrase can ignite a hurricane of different emotions and thoughts. The majority of us though, will say I love you and give a kiss goodbye.
We shield by showing no emotion the fact that the many scenarios you have been through may have prevented you from ever coming back home. The violence, the adrenaline, the blood, the gore etc… all start running rampant in your head while looking at your family and exiting that door. But alas, we still move along, put on our uniforms, badges and head to work. As public servants, we fight the good fight. We label ourselves as “Sheepdogs” or “Guard dogs” preventing the wolves of society from harming the sheep. We stay diligent, tactical and professional all while being involved in situations that make the best horror movie look like a kids show. It’s not the publicity or honor of our job that drives us. Rather, it is home, that pushes us through the trenches each and every day. Home is our goal, our end of watch for the day and our final destination.
So what happens when coming home is being threatened? Courage starts to override fear. Fleeing is never an option. In the blink of an eye, home, may not happen today or tomorrow or ever. You push that thought aside and valiantly rise to the occasion. You utilize all of your trained and non-trained techniques to conquer the evil presented in front of you. You become battered, bloody and tired. With God willing, you defeat the evil and contain it. Speaking of, that’s only the first hour of your shift. Time and time again you go through situations that would make any man cry. Some may call you crazy. Some may call you a hero. To most Officers though, it’s just our job.
At the end of the shift, hopefully we all make it home at night relatively unscathed. We sit down with our family and friends to visit and relax. We put in the back our heads the events of the day and try not to put the worry into our families. Anytime we are asked how are day was, we reply with “ok” or “good”. We know that, in a common man’s eyes, nothing was truly good or ok about it. To us Officer’s though, it was a good day, a glorious day and another day to be grateful. Not because of what happened during our shift, but because we made it home. So to all of my fellow Officer’s out there, I hope by God’s grace that “I’ll see you when you get home”.
Joseph St. Antoine is a high honors graduate of Moraine Park Technical College in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin and has obtained his degree in Criminal Justice-Corrections. He currently works at a maximum security facility. He has worked in many different facets of criminal justice including Law Enforcement, Security and Corrections.
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