Thank you to all the service men and women out there. Firefighters, police officers, doctors, and military men and women. While these are the most common service people that come to mind, I know there are other occupations where people sacrifice their lives everyday.
Let’s make one thing clear. I am writing this from the standpoint of a wife, whose acts of service husband (firefighter) is 2,000 miles away.
While we’ve been together for only three years, for exactly half that time, we have spent living apart. And to top it off, my acts of service husband missed our first-born’s birth and nearly missed our second-born’s, so you can take it from me, we know what sacrifice is.
But what is it about our partners that make them so unique? So brave and selfless. So committed and strong.
When you love an acts of service partner, you know they put the world first and themselves last. They walk in when others walk out. They don’t see danger, only how they can help. These are the amazing qualities of an acts of service person, like my husband, a firefighter.
But when you don’t share the same qualities and worry more about your spouse’s safety, how do you cope? Here’s what it means to love an acts of service partner.
1. They put the world first, admire it.
What would the world be without these special people who risk their lives for others? Firefighters, police officers, military men and women, and others, constantly put their lives at risk for the greater good.
In an extreme situation, I feel that I would sacrifice for the good of another, but I don’t do it on a daily basis. When these individuals have families it is tempting to ask, “How can they risk leaving their family behind?”
No doubt I have heard these questions being whispered at me in the background. In truth, it is a decision that both you and your partner make, and it is definitely not for every couple.
So how do you cope? How do you ignore the constant risk? I admire it. Because again, I ask, if not my spouse (or yours) then who?
I make a conscious decision and effort everyday to say that my husband and other service individuals alike are amazing. Who am I to stand in the way of a lifestyle that not only makes my husband happy, but is also doing more for the greater good of society?
Having a family simply means those noble characteristics will hopefully be passed on.
2. Time is more valuable.
Most acts of service persons work impossible shifts. Long hours, late nights, over nights, and long distance. This can be taxing on the spouse and family that is left behind.
But instead of dreading and focusing on the time spent apart, you make the time together more valuable. This includes digital time as well.
My husband and I have spent our fair share of time apart and often, this includes bouts of not having communication either. So, while it is easy to let yourself succumb to the loneliness and the worry, why waste what time or texts or phone calls that you do have on the negative?
A constant reminder of love and happy things certainly makes the time go by faster, and a little longing may be good for the heart.
3. Appreciate the little things, do the little things.
The little things go a long way regardless of who you are, but as a person that performs acts of service, often their love language is acts of service.
This means that gestures are more meaningful than for example words, or physical contact, as ways to show you care.
For my husband and I, actions always speak louder than words. With a spouse who is a serviceman or servicewoman, they use their actions to show how much they care about the world.
So, even if acts of service wasn’t your love language before, it becomes your love language. He does the little things for me and it’s more than easy to do the little things for him when your time is valuable and your spouse is valiant.
The little things can be anything from making coffee to packing lunch, sending a random sweet text or leaving a cute note (old school style- my personal fave), making dinner or cleaning up solo this time instead.
Loving a person who puts their life at risk makes your lifestyle completely different. Whatever it is that brought you together, that made you meant to be, means you were made to handle that lifestyle and that your spouse is worth it.
Your spouse puts in hard work and it takes equally as much hard work on your end to accept the risk. But when you fill your heart with appreciation, pride, and positivity it makes your relationship that much stronger and you’ll be happy you did.