I have been a reader of this site for almost a year but have barely found the time to write. I never thought that I would be in the fire organization five years ago but here I am with not only myself involved in fire but also my daughter (22) and my son (20). I have a younger son that still doesn’t understand why I am gone at all hours but he also realizes in two years when he turns 18 that he wants to go into fire.
I am a dispatcher and work with my son on the same forest. My daughter works with my brother-in-law in another state. As a single mother I think if I didn’t get involved with fire I would probably be a basket case by worrying all the time. I try to keep learning what my children and all the other kids (of all ages) that I watch over are faced with. I think that the fire organization has the best bunch of individuals you will ever find.
Having had many resources on the forest last year from almost all fifty states I can’t imagine my life without fire. These people have made my life so enjoyable. I read about the hardships of having your SO’s gone for so long and I can relate to you in more than one way. I met the man of my dreams last year as I was working the worst fire season ever on the forest. He works out of the South and I’m in the West so there is at least 2000 miles between us but we make time to see each other and we call each other almost everyday. We have spent a total of 30 days together since we met In June of 2002 but with him being in the business he doesn’t get upset that there are men calling me at all times of the day or night because he knows some of them I might be the only family they have for the summer. I just want to tell others that if we can make it work, anybody can if they really want to. Everyday I think of him and my daughter and can just imagine what it’s going to be like when I see them.
I just want to tell the girls that are having a hard time to spend some time learning about firefighting and then maybe it will be easier for you to understand that the joy of firefighting is one kind of love for your SO, but he will always come home to you which is what I will be waiting for when he retires and finally moves out West.