Every girl wants to date a sexy firefighter, right?
Turns out it is a whole lot different than what I imagined.
I know that I am not the only one who feels their thighs tremble at the sight of a fireman. There is something about their profession that puts them into a whole other category of a man. For a long time, I thought that dating a fireman was out of my league and they only fell for the busty blondes that needed rescuing as badly as their lost kitten. As a geeky, tattooed chick, I thought I had zero chances but then, Tinder happened.
Thank Goddess for Tinder, ladies and gents.
He was home from a summer long of assignments and was looking for a “dinner companion . . .” On Tinder. Right. Well, I couldn’t resist. When I walked into meet him for sushi and was greeted by a 6’1”, grizzled, 215 pound wildland firefighting machine, I wanted to marry him on the spot.
We ended up having a charming evening, but I couldn’t help but picture flames behind him with soot on his cheeks while we got to know each other over cheap beers. I kept finding myself coming back to his job and asking him questions that he seemed reluctant to answer.
Turns out firefighters don’t really think they are all that cool. Men who do wildland firefighting don’t even call themselves firefighters. They will tell you that they work for the Forest Service or the BLM, depending on where they are stationed. They don’t consider themselves heroes, they don’t consider themselves fearless and brazen in the face of danger. I’m not sure why, but I found this to be sexier than ever.
I was exponentially more attracted to this man because I knew that he would refuse to pose for some Playgirl calendar, yellow fire retardant shirt open in the breeze, one sweaty palm gripping a chainsaw and a baby deer draped around his neck while walking away from a burning forest.
I met my firefighter at the end of his season as he was entering into four months of non-pay status and R&R. He was always available, always around, paid for everything and spoiled me rotten. He always wanted to be with me and made me feel endlessly special.
It was a little oversaturating as we approached fire season, but I tried to remember that he would be working 14 days on and two days off for six months straight. Their schedules make it feel like you are in a forced long distance relationship over the summer. I was going to miss him like crazy and so I tried to absorb as much of him as possible before sending him off into the field.
I found that he loved when I would leave notes in his work locker after he started personal training to prep for the season, and he really appreciated home cooked meals in mental preparation of all the peanut butter and jellys and dehydrated meals to come. I didn’t realize how much these little things meant to him until he would call me from the road to remind me. My longing for him made me forget that he was out there sleeping in the dirt every night just wishing he was home with me.
When they come home, they want whiskey, women, and praise. Anything short of a street wide banner wouldn’t be sufficient to stroke the ego of a firefighter returning home. I joke and I don’t at the same time. In all seriousness though, they just want to be welcomed home. What I learned from dating my wildland firefighter is that the job is tough and it makes having relationships even tougher.
It takes a certain kind of woman to be able to commit to a relationship where you see your significant other so rarely. Even though dating a firefighter isn’t exactly what I thought it would be, I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.
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W.M. Chandler is a Colorado native and works best with her head in the clouds. She is an avid researcher and enjoys writing about unfamiliar subjects. She writes passionately about nature and the outdoors, human connections and relationships, nutrition and politics.