So I was talking to someone on my team and we were discussing getting out of your own way and getting out of your comfort zone for true growth both personally & professionally. I shared this story with them and realized it would be a great story to share with all of you.
As some of you may know I am not comfortable with guns, which is really odd considering I was in Army JROTC, & College level Law Enforcement classes in High School. Add in the fact that my husband Eric is a former Marine and really enjoys guns makes for a very interesting situation.
Valentines day 2013 I event went as far as to take a Concealed Carry Class with him. I was doing great, I even aced the paper tests! Then we got to the practical test in the range. I didn’t even have the gun loaded and my anxiety started to rise. All I could think about was that if I screwed up, someone could get injured badly. I just couldn’t believe I was holding a weapon that could kill someone and it was scary.
Then the old lady next to me breaks out her purse cannon ( I don’t remember the type but it was MASSIVE!). My anxiety is getting the best of me and I had to do breathing exercises to calm myself down from a full blown anxiety attack. Somehow in the midst of all of that I passed the test and received a concealed carry permit.
So comfort yourself knowing that someone who is having an anxiety attack while taking their practical can still get the permit.
So while I was out in Colorado my friend had offered me to shoot some guns. I had been meaning to learn because. So I was open to spending more time with guns, but based on experience did not really have high expectations of myself.
I already told you all about how I had a hard time with the breathing so that right there didn’t help. I had been anxious about it since I had finished the tent. The panic was coming and I was going to look like an idiot. I went and grabbed my Balance & Serenity as I knew I had to find a way to calm & center. I had the headphones on while he was shooting and watched him shoot a rifle, shotgun, 38 revolver, & a 22. I was surprised that at the end of the shooting I actually felt a release, a sigh of relief, and this calm just wash over me.
I was not ready to shoot the guns but I wasn’t freaking out just being around them so that was a HUGE improvement from before. I was still not sure I was going to shoot the guns but then when my friends son recite gun safety and shot the 22 with his dad I knew I needed to get out of my head, and step out of my comfort zone and do this.
So when it was my turn I shot the 22. My friend helped loading the gun for me, which I appreciated immensely. It was so surreal, I felt like I was shooting a pop cap gun. I was so proud of myself that I did it. I know the balance definitely helped me stay grounded through the whole experience. It’s amazing what can happen when you step outside of your comfort zone.
The next morning it turns out the pass was not going to be open until 11 so we had to take up some time. We ended up walking around some new trails and found some really beautiful streams and camp sites. Since we had so much time, we decided to take out the guns again. This time I even go to shoot the revolver & the shot gun!! I am now proud to say that while I am not standing in line to play with guns, I am immensely more comfortable and look forward to some range time with my hubby when I get home