To my Officer:
I see you.
I see the long hours you work and the lack of sleep you get.
I see you with your face in your hands, pondering on what you could have done differently during that traffic stop or how you could have encouraged the single mom with three babies on her hip last night.
I see you worrying about the future and how you can make ends meet for your family on the salary you are given.
I see the pain in your eyes as you remember that baby you pulled out of a car wreck who was lifeless in your arms.
I see the tears roll down your cheek as you recant the Domestic Violence call that changed the way you feel about your wife or husband.
I see the hugs you give your kids when you get home after you walk into a home and see a child sleeping on the floor or grabbing your hand to play.
I see you breathing deep, reflecting and thanking God you are home safe from the shots fired call you received at 2am a couple of weeks ago.
I see your eyes turn away from the news as the anchor says another officer was shot in the line of duty.
I see you drape your badge with the thin blue line out of respect for the fallen.
I see you giving a pep talk to that 16 year old boy who was in the wrong place at the wrong time and begging him to find new friends.
I see you walking into the US Marine's apartment who called 911 in a panic just to find out it was too late.
I see you kiss your family goodbye as you walk out the door into a battlefield of unknowns.
I see you on the slow days and on the bad days where you wish it was slow.
I see you scrubbing dirt off your boots and blood out of your uniform from a man who decided to run from you, but cut his leg in the process.
I see you thinking about all of the people who have been effected by the drug dealer you put in jail last night and the dose of Narcan that just wasn't enough for his last victim.
I see you falling limp into your spouses arms as you weep at the things you have seen.
I see you assuring your children that when you get home tomorrow you will play baseball with them in the front yard.
I see you missing important family events because, duty calls.
I see your tired eyes and your calloused hands and your hurting back and feet from carrying a bullet proof vest and a 15 pound belt around your waist.
I see you cracking jokes to mask the gory details.
I see you wishing you could do more but praying to do less all at the same time.
I see the hate you receive but the love you give back.
You are not invisible. You are not a monster. You are not broken.
I see your heart. I see your valor.
I see your tenacity.
I see you.