When your car pulls into the driveway after work your little fan club gathers at the windowsill, shouting & squishing their round faces into the pane of glass. They wave eagerly when they see you climbing the porch stairs, & jump for joy if they spot the occasional surprise treat in your hand. You open the door slowly, since the dog is always barking happily, wagging her tail at record speed as you attempt to come inside.
You barely squeeze through before the kids take their running leaps into the stronghold of your arms. They giggle & squeal as you lift them up high for big bear hugs. Even our big kid can’t wait to tell you about her latest drawing or video game obsession.
Yeah you’re their hero. & you’re mine too.
When we started having babies, the dynamic in our household shifted. I always expected to be a working mother but the numbers just wouldn’t add up. So I left my career at 8 months pregnant & you told me not to worry, because you’d take care of us. It was a lot to take on but you kept your word.
Never failing to provide the best life possible for us no matter what it took.
These days, its just the same, though coming home looks a little different. Your fan club still assembles, but you’re a little slower coming in. You leave your mask in the car, your boots at the door & wash your hands while I disinfect the knob behind you.
Raising our family of five is a tall order on it’s own but now you get up every morning to face an even more uncertain world. You step outside the bounds of the safe & happy bubble of our home & I hate knowing that you’re out there, that you could be exposed at any time, but your job is essential. People depend on you to keep things going in this time of crisis. So as we hunker in here, you act as our contact person to the world.
Putting yourself on the line each & every day.
Even so, you’re always positive & supportive. You work so hard but still think to call & check in on us. You calm me down when I start to spiral. You wait in line outside of the grocery store to stock up on the essentials so I don’t have to. You make my locked-in birthday special with steak dinner by candle light in our cozy dining room. You try to keep things happy with jokes & poking fun at me.
When I thank you for going above & beyond, you just shrug & say, “I’m out there anyway, Babe.” Because you don’t do it for the thank-you,
Just because of who you are.
This pandemic makes me feel helpless a lot of the time but I try my best to do my part. By making our home a reprieve from the stress at the end of your day. By cooking your favorite dinner. By supporting those on the front lines by staying home as much as possible. By entertaining our kids & keeping them out of the Emergency Room. By cleaning over & over & praying for this to end.
I know those things are important too, but you have a duty that goes beyond our family. One that serves countless people in our community & ultimately the world.
Though you’re so endearingly humble, you’d never see it for yourself.
That’s why I want to remind you who you truly are. The man I’ve always seen but many others never do. Who time & time again I’ve watched sacrifice to do what’s best for us.
Someone who supports & comes through for us no matter what it takes. Someone who would give his all for us.
Just like heroes do.
Its why when you put on your uniform each day I see more than just a working man. I see Superman. I hate this virus but I’m glad the world is getting a chance to see how brave you are. To know what I’ve known all along:
You’re a hero. You’re our hero. & I love you.