Regardless of how diligent we attempt to be in our daily lives, we often get caught up in the hustle and bustle of responsibilities, and obligations. We get so buried in the pace of everyday life that we sometimes need an event to jolt us into reality and remind us to be alive, adapt, and live in the moment. To one degree or another, we are all offenders of living in the comfort zone. When moments occur that break us out of that dangerous territory, it’s important to take note and use that as inspiration. I had one of these moments last week, it was a simple headline; “Teen Girl Shot During a Robbery”.
This particular event spoke to me because it occurred at a place I frequent on my daily commute. Instantly, reality became clear. My “routine trips to the range” and the mundane way I conceal my EDC (every day carry), came into a sharp focus. THIS was my validation of why I do what I do. I carry and “prepare” for situations much like this. Not to say that it will happen, and I wouldn’t dare to boast that I could handle any situation that I was confronted with, but I would be a fool to fall into the false reality that these events don’t happen. Furthermore, I would be doing myself a huge disservice if I never trained myself to handle such situations and give myself the best chance. It’s not really chance at all, but a deliberate mindset and way of living.
After reading the headline, I began to reflect on my training and the way I prepare myself. I quickly realized it wasn’t adequate, and I ask you: will it ever be? If your goal is to carry a firearm, your purpose should be to defend yourself and your loved ones. What are the steps you need to personally take to make this happen? Much like other goals in life, we first need to outline what we want to achieve, and then take the steps necessary to achieve said goal. No one is an expert in any one topic overnight, and I stress to you that being proficient with a firearm is no different. One could even argue that you can never truly reach the end point of learning.
If you buy a gun for self-defense, or even home protection – that is the first step, and a great one. However, allowing that gun to sit in the case, or in your awesome, high-speed low drag EDC holster, until the need arises will not serve you well. For example, I knew a woman who had encountered a few situations in life that prompted her to obtain her CCW and carry. Her firearm of choice was a Glock 19 and with that she felt unstoppable, she would throw it in her purse in the holster and call it good. Of course she went to the range every so often and had firearms training in the past. But I specifically remember her telling friends and family “yea, I don’t even notice it’s there! It’s great; it’s just become part of my routine”. That woman was me. Looking back on those days, i think to myself – WOW!!!!
I had good intentions, but I had no follow through. I had a goal, but I had not taken the steps to accomplish it. I was wrong, and I even hate to admit that I was THAT person. To one degree or another, I know this happens more often than we like to admit. The Glock I carried around was much like my cellphone or Chap Stick, it was an obsolete object in my purse. I was stuck in the comfort zone, I never practiced drawing from the purse, or thought about how I would if a situation presented itself. I had it with me, and it was my security, and I was safe.
I share this with you not to let you all know how complacent I was, but to give you a situation, an event, and an example to bring you to reality. I can tell you that things have changed since that time. When I began to carry again, I had a completely different attitude, and that’s what I would like to share with you.
When I conceal carried my firearm for the first time in a couple of years (it was on me, not in a purse as I don’t believe in purse carry anymore for myself), I felt a huge responsibility and a big wakeup call. All of the sudden I had a liability I carried with me, not just an object. I needed to be accountable to myself and others around me to proficiently handle and use this firearm in different situations. That, and to be able to fight my way to it if needed. I felt a desire to learn and prepare for the worst. I decided at that moment I would dedicate myself to training. I often remember the phrase told to me by Police Officers I admired growing up; “it doesn’t matter what kind of call you respond to, there is always a gun involved, YOURS”. Although Officers use this phrase, it applies to you and I as civilians in our everyday life. It’s a reminder that when you are carrying no matter where you go … YOU are bringing the gun to the fight and or situation.
This makes you ultimately responsible for all actions involving that firearm. It’s a weight and a burden that everyone who chooses to carry takes on. It requires dedication, training, and a mindset of being present and aware. All of this being said, I hope that this can be that wake up call for you. Maybe you relate to my story or situation, and maybe you’ve been in that day-to-day fog we get comfortable in. Or, you might think that I am a complete idiot. However, if you get nothing more out of this article then not wanting to be the old me, I’m okay with that.
The big question now is how do we break the cycle and keep these reminders at the forefront our mind? I have a suggestion for you: MOTUS. When I think about MOTUS, I envision a lifestyle that is MOVED by our goals, STIRRED by a desire to be better and INSPIRED to truly live. You and I both know the importance of training, and nothing I have said here is groundbreaking or monumental, but take it one step further and commit. As a new member to the MOTUS team, I am committing myself to MOTUS, my loved ones, and myself to be about that lifestyle. I challenge you to do the same. As a community, let’s be present, alert, and ready for anything. If it’s attending classes, working on dry fire, signing up for the MOTUS training program or completing that 666 drill – GET AFTER IT! As a group of modern-day adventurers, we need to keep each other accountable and inspire each other to achieve greatness