Bad Luck Cadet #4 – Good News
It happened on Tuesday morning. The call came in and essentially I was IN. I would begin the police academy on August 13. I was told there was a lot to do and they wanted to see me later that same afternoon.
I arrived at the police department and sat down next to Miss Ponytail. I found out her name was Stacy and she was from Montana. She told me she had always wanted to be a police officer and had seen the ad online. Mo was nowhere in sight and I was pretty sure it was not good news for him.
Sgt. Spears asked us both to step into his office. He handed us each an academy letter laying out the specifics of what to expect and what we needed. He said we would be issued a check for our uniform allowance upon leaving today and from that we would be expected to purchase the required items. We would also be given identification cards from the department’s records clerk. We would receive our first paycheck the following Monday and would be expected to be at the police department at 0800 Monday through Friday until we left for PAFRA.
Sgt. Spears explained Small Town Police Department (STPD) was in need of female officers and we would be the first if we succeeded at the academy. I had lived here for two years and never realized there were no female officers. I believe Sgt. Spears was setting his star on Stacy and did not think I would make it. He seemed to be speaking to her and I was only a sidebar. It didn’t matter. Nothing could stop the elation over my dream coming true.
Stacy and I made plans to head to Phoenix for a uniform store the following morning. We needed to do a turnaround trip, so it would make for a long day. Stacy seemed more likeable as we talked on the police department steps and made plans. She was 26 years old and had a 7-year-old son. Her son was living with her ex-husband in Montana while Stacy attended the academy. She told me she was very nervous and heard the academy was difficult.
I had put a lot of pressure on myself about getting to the academy but thought very little about actually being there. I would most likely get nervous a few days before we left. Right now all I could do was smile.
That evening I broke the news to my husband. I made his favorite dinner and waited until we were almost finished eating. “I’m leaving for the police academy on August 12th. It begins August 13th. I’ll be gone for eighteen weeks and live on campus.”
“Is this what you really want?” he asked.
I looked at him, smiled, and said, “Yes.”
“Well, congratulations, I’m sure you’ll do great. What’s this about eighteen weeks away from home?”
I explained I would be living in a dorm and weekends off were at the discretion of the academy staff. I would come home anytime I could.
“That’s a long time. I’ll miss you.”
Have I mentioned how much I love this man?