Friday, March 13, 2015

Introducing LADIES & LEAD...

Welcome, gun-toting ladies (and ladies who want to be)! There are SO MANY things I can't wait to share with you! We are going to go in-depth about guns, accessories, personalization, training, and SO MUCH MORE! But, before we do all of that business, I'd like to start with a confession...

I used to hate guns.

Yes, I just typed that. It is now forever in print. I wish I could tell you I was the local neighborhood Annie Oakley growing up, but I wasn't. The only contact I had with a gun was my brother's toy bazooka. Even the sound of that was annoying to me. I was scared of guns. They seemed to hold so much power - the power of life and death. I didn't want any part of that kind of power.

I had this same feeling, the feeling of having far too much power, the first time I got behind the wheel of a car. I was certain I would eventually murder a family of five because I couldn't be trusted to hold a steering wheel. Just as that fear dissipated the more I drove, so did my fear of firearms.

Over a decade ago, my husband took me shooting for the first time. We walked into a dingy, dirty hole-in-the-wall joint that smelled like stale coffee and cigarettes. There were pictures of decaying, bloody zombies and various middle-eastern "terrorists" on the walls. Everything in there had a layer of dust so thick it gave the whole space a grayish hue. I felt filthy just being there. That was just the lobby!!!!

The shooting range area was far worse. Nasty, lead-filled carpet lined the miniscule stalls, which were the only thing separating me from the creepy, gangster-wannabe in the stall next to mine. As someone who is sensitive to loud noise, my cute, pink 23 decibel covering muffs didn't in any way protect me from the assault my ears were about to experience. As my husband yelled instructions at me, that seemed to be in a foreign tongue, I quickly popped off a round (or five, it all happened very fast). I'm pretty sure my hands shook the rest of our visit to that creepy dungeon.

Walking out felt like a prison release. The bright sun attacked my eyes to remind me that there is still a happy world outside of that horrid establishment and I was free to carry on with my life as if I had never been there.

This disconcerting experience replayed several times over the next year. My love for my husband and our complete lack of having anything at all in common forced me to grit my teeth and bear it. Needless to say, shooting for me was not love at first shot.

About the tenth time I went to that dungeon, it started to change form. The layer of dust made it feel more homey and lived in. The stale smell of cigarettes and coffee told me the old men that gathered there every morning were having another gab session. The man behind the counter, once seeming gruff and curt, now greeted me with a smile. The thing that had changed the most about my shooting experience was a sudden fondness I was growing for it!

Out of nowhere, I was loading mags like I knew what I was doing. I was still all over the target, but I wasn't petrified to pull the trigger. I was actually even able to start keeping my eyes open when I squeezed it, even though I knew a loud boom was coming. I started to feel something really cool... I kind of started to feel like Laura Croft, bad a** tomb raider! From that moment on, I was hooked!

Just like anything you do over time, the newness wears off and a deeper love and appreciation for it begins to grow. I don't feel like Laura Croft anymore, but I do feel competent, prepared, and skilled. Honestly, that feels better than feeling like Laura Croft.

What's my point? Why share this? I want you to remember we all start somewhere. I want to walk through these experiences with you. I want to be with you in the Laura Croft moment. I want to walk you through the process of becoming competent and skilled. I want you to have the opportunity to become a shooter. Why? WHY NOT?!?! It's practical, it's fun, it's competitive, it's interesting...(I could go on and on...) I want to see you face your fear of guns head on and overcome it. I genuinely believe guns are great and useful tools. Maybe the only stopping you from finding that out for yourself is fear of the unknown. This blog is going to get rid of that obstacle.


1 comment:

  1. Nicely done on your first of many great posts. I look forward to reading more. Being a member of the Deadeye Dames League, you've taught me a great deal about handling guns and overcoming my apprehension of handling them. The conceal carry class Tom and I attended was excellent! I learned so much about the great responsibilities and decisions that come with choosing to exercise such a right. Thank you for not only what MTM brings to the community but what you bring to women from every walk of life - self confidence, empowerment, friendships and support and the ability to defend ourselves (and others) should the need arise. I too have found a new love of target shooting; something more Tom and I enjoy doing together. I would strongly encourage any woman wanting to learn more about firearms/self protection to contact Adrienne at MTM Arms. You'll finish with not only a confidence in yourself, but invaluable lessons on training techniques and etiquette, gun purchasing and an appreciation for the responsibilities associated with gun ownership.