Thursday, April 25, 2013

Ready on the Right?

Sometimes you just have to go out with the girls. You know, that group of special women, the ones you've known a long time, the ones you've gone to for support, the ones whose shoulders you've cried on, the ones you've laughed with until the incontinence commercials sadly become a reality,  yeah those ones.

Someone sets a date and a place and a time, and you meet for say...dinner. Or maybe a movie. A shopping trip to The Covered Bridge Festival where you lodge in the finest of single wide trailers only Indiana can boast. Or perhaps a trip overseas together, twice I tell you, where you  gather around a wood table in front of a centuries old fireplace and drink whiskey in a warm, dark, haven of a place called  O'Loughlins in the village Ballyvaughan. Or maybe you just get together...

To fire off semi-automatic handguns, a revolver, a shotgun and an AR-15 rifle while getting yelled at through headphones by a man wanting to get your adrenaline way up while keeping your aim way steady.

Yeah. sometimes you just got to get together with the girls and do that.

It's extremely helpful if there is a group of talented marksmen who wear police badges during the day and teach woman how to stop intruders with intent of imminent harm, at night. Last evening  I completed a Home Self Defense Class sponsored by the Gibson City Police Force. (Illinois) Men who charge a pittance of a fee to teach woman how to protect themselves and those they love if pressured to do so.

Men who understand that true safety in the crazy world has nothing to do with limiting guns to law abiding Americans but everything to do with teaching the skills needed to make use of our second amendment Constitutional rights. 

Men who work long hours on their regular shifts but volunteer to come in extra to teach woman not to be afraid but to be in charge, as much as one can be, in desperate situations. Men who are tired of seeing woman terrorized, threatened, injured and too often killed because they didn't have the skills needed to say "get out! get away! I have a gun!"

The class was not easy. Several woman had never really handled a gun or shot before, some of us had a little experience but like me had been lazy about practicing. My father took me out regularly when I was 12 and he was a cop. Then 40 years go by before eldest son bit the bullet (sorry) and showed me the ropes again. But even though we had different levels of experience and confidence we were committed to knowing more about guns by the time class was over.

When you count the time these officers spent before and after class answering questions, allowing us to shot whatever we wanted as long as we wanted, we had 8 full hours of training.

Not exactly  boot camp but still those 8 hours were intense. Classroom time gave way to range time. Range time gave way to "Oh Dear God you want me to do WHAT ?! time. Each of us were assigned our own instructor to watch every single move we made,  teaching us the basics of how our guns worked, over and over and OVER.  Placement of hands, of feet, of trigger fingers, find your sight. How to slam magazines in. (No sissy stuff tolerated !)

And if they saw us "cheating" i.e not doing it the way they taught us, they made us do it again and again. Then came the shooting. First one round. Then one more. Another one. Then two rounds at a time. Then three. And after each round always back to the basics. Placement of hands, of feet, of trigger fingers, find your sight and for the millionth time "SLAM IT!"

Then the big finale where our skills and our nerves were totally tested. I won't tell you anymore about how they accomplished THAT last feat, hate to ruin it for those of you planning to take the class in the near future,.but I will tell you one of my nursing buddies (yes MS. To-Let of you I speak) went totally Sigourney Weaver in Alien at that point.

You know you've been thinking taking a class like this.  Just do it!

Gibson City Police Department 217-784-8666


  1. Fantastic!!! My husband sent me to a similar class several years ago and I am truly grateful that he did.

    This year we have taken a few self-defense classes together for the "just in case you can't get to your weapon." It's tough and I hope I never have to use it.
    Hope for the best and plan for the worst.

  2. I thinki would enjoy a course like that too........

  3. Good for you Donna! I took a similar course many, many years ago and have to admit it was an absolutely great experience. This has been a good reminder for me to sign up this Spring for a refresher course.

  4. I learned how to shoot a .22 in Girl Scouts back when I was a wee tot. I think that will definitely stop a squirrel in his tracks.
    I have been totally meaning to take a course like this! Mostly just to have hot guys shout "SLAM IT!" at me while I pull the trigger- but also to improve my confidence should an intruder dare to cross our threshold.
    Good on ya', lady!

  5. Sounds like a wonderful day to me!

  6. Oh, and I forgot to add ... not talking about perfume, makeup, purses or otherwise ... makes me a happy woman!

  7. I can imagine that spending time with your friends doing something as adventurous as gun training would be pretty cool. We all have that inner "he-man" or latent testosterone bursting to get out. Please believe me when i say that i have no judgement in this at all but i find it pretty sad that this kind of training is necessary. My son goes to a gun club to learn the sport of shooting (targets) similar to Olympics and yes, coming off a farm i shot vermin (rabits and foxes) but none of it is done for our own protection. In the land of Oz there was a gun referendum and all guns were handed in and destroyed. The only law abiding citizens with guns are police and security. Yes there are bikie gangs and criminals that have guns but they tend to shoot each other. Am i living in La La Land. Is it really so bad in US that housewives need guns to protect their families. We really only know what is presented to us in media. Please, remember no judgement. Would just like to understand the need for guns in the home. I have an Aspergers Son with a passion for guns. He could name 1000's and watches US Yutube shows on guns everyday. He is a gentle soul but i am comforted knowing that he cannot access them. We dont have gun shops. You can buy them on line, but good luck getting in the country and then you would need to satisfy gun ownership laws which are very very strict. Over here there was quite a big deal made about how in one of the lastest school shootings in the US the killer was an Aspie. There were numberous guns and weapons in the home. Why? Just Trying to understand.

  8. What a great time! So glad that you & others are taking advantage of the time the instructors took to help. I wish everyone had the time/chance to take a defensive handgun course. Too bad they don't offer courses like that at the local school level.

  9. Lynda. I was you many years ago and so no worries about the feelings/opinions you have. I thought only criminals had guns and if more people had guns there would be more crimes but age (53) experience (our farm store on our own property,was robbed TWICE last fall) emergency needs (critically injured animals that might suffer even longer before a vet can make it out here) increased scum factor (those who prey on children) plus reading reading and reading true statistics has caused me over time to change my views. I love that here in America we still have the right to bear arms but no one is forcing us to do so. I greatly look forward to the passing on conceal/carry law specifics here in Illinois and instead of shopping for shoes I spend too much time shopping for a bra holster. Please followers, excuse the visual on that one. So really no worries, all decent comments are welcome. (I may have just eliminated myself with that "Decent" requirement)

  10. Thank you Donna, for not going all stroppy on me. Perhaps i am naive to the ways of the world. I am very blessed to live in Oz (Australia) where these things are not concerns for our daily lives. Perhaps its our small population (big deal here - we just hit 23Mil - Woo Hoo) our isolation or vast landscape and distances between cities and towns. Im a country girl living in the big smoke which has 3Mil (Melbourne). I imagine that i will live out my life never having the need for a gun and for that i am thankful.

  11. I did a short spell of military arms training, and managed to fire off some pretty impressive weaponry. But I've never used one in anger! Your course sounds fun.

  12. Cro, the instructors were so clear with us...our first action step was not to use the gun but to put distance between us and our attacker. They wanted us to have the skills but never to be using the weapons as replacement for common sense. And yes the course was serious fun

  13. Donna, i took a class similar to the one you're describing. I was definitely the newbie in the class, and one of our instructors was a cop.

    My dad and brother had guns (both hunted and were in the color guard when we were in fife and drum, so they carried and shot muskets) so i had been around them and knew how to use one but had no desire to do so.

    Without going into great detail, i found myself in a few situations where i realized that knowing how to use a gun and really embracing that knowledge was worth the time and effort.

  14. Megan. It only takes one time.
    Thanks again for your great comments