"Do you hate me?"
Am I the only person who immediately assumes dead, cheating, or hates me when I can't get in touch with my husband? There are more times than I would like to admit that I have called 47 times back to back and gotten no answer, looked on the Life 360 app (yes we keep up with each others locations because hello, insecure) and have seen that he is at a random address NOT saved in the app (while on shift) and automatically assumed HE IS CHEATING ON ME! Not even kidding. My mind immediately goes to the darkest place, throwing the darkest thoughts at me like daggers, and sending me straight down to the mental courthouse to file for divorce. "Sign the papers! As soon as he walks in that door, he is gonna hear. it. from. me."
Don't tell me I am dramatic, because sis, I know.
I can't even tell you how many conversations I have had with other police wives, and heck, even just married women who all feel the same way. Insecure. Insecurities are little 3rd grade bullies that need to be pushed off the monkey bars one good time. I am going to speak from the perspective as the wife of a police officer, but I know that many of you can relate simply because you are a woman. The insecurities of being a woman are the realest. Don't count the fact of having pushed a baby out of your lady area. And for sure don't even talk about it if you've done it more than once! Whew! Oh, and breastfed that baby(s), too... saying this as I pick the girls up off the floor.
There is a huge stigma about police officers and relationship failure. I sat through family night with my officer back in December. The wives of the training officers stood up to talk to the spouses of those graduating the academy. They told us that the divorce rate among officers and their spouses is significantly higher than other jobs, and even offered a counselor to us if we ever felt our marriage was in danger. Cue my brain to start freaking the heck out. "We have been married less than a year and now you're telling me we're destined to get a divorce. I AM OUT OF HERE. Coty, grab your coat! Actually don't because it belongs to the department! Not this marriage!" Then to throw on top of that, the horror stories you hear from other wives... Sweet heavens. I honestly had to stop asking questions. I would find myself mad at my husband because of a story I heard about another officer who had cheated on his wife. I am not kidding when I tell you that I cried about this for a long time. I didn't want my husband to be a cop simply because I was convinced he was going to cheat on me if he became a police officer. The night he left for his first shift as an FTO, I felt like my world came crashing down on top of me. I suffered from severe, debilitating anxiety. Oh, don't miss the fact that I was also pregnant! I was the biggest emotional basket case you have ever seen in your life.
Y'all, hear me when I tell you this, I can be the most insecure person probably in the universe. But also hear this about his job -- as sucky as it might be sometimes, and more times than not, we're going to catch the short end of the stick and I don't care what ANY one tells you, as a wife or girlfriend of a police officer, you serve that city too. You make sacrifices for that city too. You defend that city too. (Sorry, tangent). This job does not make your husband a cheater (or insert whatever your insecurity is here).
I ask my husband 20+ times a day if he hates me. Insecurities start with us. What are we really insecure about? My list is a mile long. I have a kangaroo pouch from carrying my son for nine months and cellulite on my thighs as deep as moon craters and a mustache that I have to wax or Nair every other week because you can FORGET me getting that thing threaded again. That my friend, is the devils work. So am I insecure that I have a little extra to love or that my husband is going to leave me? Am I insecure because my mustache is ready to turn up or that my husband thinks someone is prettier than I am? Insecurities. Start. With. Us.
How do we get rid of those insecurities? Well, here's how ladies. See yourself as your husband, better yet, as Jesus sees you. Because your husband might see you when you haven't showered for three days and you're wearing the same shirt as you were yesterday when your baby threw up on you, twice. Go ahead and accept right now that your husband or boyfriend is not perfect and will probably sometime maybe in your lifetime say something that makes you feel bad about yourself and visa versa. I told Coty his hair was thinning one time, messed him up for weeks (love you, babe). I mean really, cut that negative self talk out! You'd be amazed at how much better you feel about yourself (and about other women!!) once you stop comparing yourself to that Instagram model or the new girl on the block (or squad). Our minds are the biggest battlefield we will ever encounter and we are our own worst critic. Girlies, we have to get to a place where we can recognize the lies and replace them with truth about ourselves.
Tuesday morning I was standing in our bathroom in my nursing bra and maternity underwear (haven't been nursing or pregnant for almost 5 months, but comfort is everything) when Coty walked in and my immediate first thought was to cover myself up. I tossed that thought in the trash and grabbed my kangaroo pouch, with both hands I might add, and just looked at him. He laughed. He doesn't think there is anyone in the world prettier than I am, funnier than I am, smarter than I am, or better than I am.
I am preaching to myself. Like I said, I am insecure. But the way I see myself effects my marriage, my work, my friendships and will eventually effect my relationship with my son. I am choosing to see myself in a negative way, focusing on the things that I don't like about myself rather than the things that make me unique and fun. For lack of better words, I am robbing myself of the joy I could be experiencing. Don’t get to the point where you don’t hear your own negative self talk anymore. Don’t let it become background noise that you are so used to hearing that you cancel it out and ignore it.
So today, lets look at ourselves in the mirror and honestly, admire the way we look. Look back over our lives and remember all the things we have accomplished. Appreciate the things we have done. Choose to see our relationships in a new light rather than thinking the absolute worst all time. We shouldn't spend our time critiquing ourselves because there will always be someone there to do that for us (hi haters!). It’s impossible to be hard on yourself when you see how far you’ve come. Kick those stupid insecurities to the curb! We're so much better than the wrong perceptions we have of ourselves.
Love yourself today.