From the outside looking in it may have seemed like a crazy idea. I work full time, I have a 4 hour commute (round trip). I had my weekends free, I could go to the range whenever I wanted, I’m naturally shy and introverted…what was I thinking?
Now, most work weeks are 7 days. Some of that time is sitting in the class watching someone else teach and some of that is teaching (talking or on the range). Do I sometimes miss my weekends? I’m over 50, have fibromyalgia, so YES! But…my fibro is better since I’ve been teaching. I’m calmer, happier, but much busier…that took some serious thought.
Working with Evan and Dave at Innovative Defensive Solutions, LLC., helped me find a confidence I thought I had lost, or maybe didn’t realize was there. It gave me an outlet from day to day nonsense, drastically improved my shooting skills and firearms knowledge, and helped me find my voice and a purpose. We all need that, and sometimes we get it from family or our jobs, but when that doesn’t work we need to look elsewhere.
Since I became an instructor I started this blog, two FB pages (Women Firearms Instructors and National Take Your Daughter to the Range Day – which just went over 800 likes in less than 3 weeks). I found my voice. I learned that in teaching and helping others on their path to shooting, I was sharing my passion for the sport. It may seem like I was giving something but I found I was getting so much more! I learn something from every class. I get excited for the students on the range when they do well, and I’m as excited as they are. I’ve met so many wonderful, smart, funny, supportive people through Face Book and this blog, I can’t thank them all enough for being in my life, and I know there are more friends out there that I haven’t met yet.
And…my latest endeavor. National Take Your Daughter to the Range Day. Yesterday I got a call from someone at US Shooting, they oversee the US Olympic Shooting team and what I like to think of as “the path to dream” to get to that level. I was in awe, I was talking to a man who represented our great nation at the 1976 Olympics! Wow…he wanted to know if they could link to NTYDTTRD to reach out to young shooters to help them discover that path to dream. Gulp…OK!
Are we crazy busy? YES. Do we seriously need donations, DOUBLE YES, the start up costs are brutal. But, do I fall asleep at the end of a long day of answering emails, tweaking the website (or trying to learn how to tweak the site, LOL) with a smile and a sense that we are doing something amazing? Yes. In the few short weeks since this idea was published to the world, the support, the photos and the emails have been incredible. I’m so excited. We, all of us in this warm, loving, shooting community, are bonding together to teach safe gun handling, self esteem and FUN. With our friends, our children…each other.
When I wondered why my Fibro didn’t seem so bad I realized…I’m happy. I feel I’m doing something good for someone besides me. Amazing what putting yourself out there for the rest of the world does for the little world inside your own skin.
Yes, I will get back to shooting tips and practical advice very soon, but wanted to send a big thank you to my new friends, and the friends I haven’t met yet.