Why I carry

I grew up around guns; I got a rifle from my dad for christmas when I was 12. Going hunting was a normal thing we did. My family owned rifles and shotguns and my dad had 1 pistol that he kept for security that I was never allowed to touch. When I was in my 20’s I became a corporate hair colorist for a L’Oreal affiliated hair color company called Redken. My job required me to travel between 4 states, on my own, educating other stylists. Almost all of the time, I drove myself where I needed to go because I was compensated per mile traveled, which hugely helped out with expenses. Most of the time I would be driving all day and get to my hotel after dark. The company I worked for was always conscious of my safety and tried to book my room in a reputable hotel with an interior entrance, but I was still alone, often in a different town, dragging my luggage through dark hotel parking lots. I never really thought about my safety-I was simply focused on work and getting where I needed to go.
I did that for over a year before the pace of that industry just became too much for me to keep up with. Looking back, Im so thankful for God’s protection over me during that time. A few years later I got my concealed weapons permit after some pressure from my dad. Later that year I met my husband, Josh, a huge advocate for the second amendment and an American History (concentration in American wars and aviation) degree holder. Needless to say that he enjoys sharing his knowledge of and passion for American history with me…allof the time. Our first week of marriage, he insisted we watch the HBO series Band of Brothers (which is 10 full hour-long episodes) and would pause it when he thought I needed further historical explanation.
Our first christmas together, he bought me a single piece of an AR rifle. I had no clue what I had unwrapped so I had to ask what it was. He told me his gift for me was a gun-and that we were going to build it together. I was somewhat disappointed since I was still in the professional beauty industry and had hoped for makeup brushes and shoes, but he was so genuinely excited to share his love of firearms with me that I put a smile on my face and told him how much I loved it (big fat lie). Later that year he bought me my first handgun, a .40 caliber mid-sized Glock. After practicing with several different models and sizes, I decided on the Glock because when I held it, it was the one that felt most like my blowdryer.
Josh was very adamant that I always carry my Glock with me since I often worked late and was usually the one to close up the salon. I had been raised with guns, but my experience had been limited to rifles and shot guns. I had no experience with handguns, so it made me nervous to have it with me. Hoping it would make me feel better about carrying my new accessory with me, my husband went as far as buying me one of those concealed carry purses (which was ugly and looked like an 80-year-old, hippie-redneck cowgirl picked it out). We went to the range so that I could get comfortable using it-loading it and unloading it incase I ever had to use it for my own protection or someone else’s protection. Eventually, I became for confident in carrying and my ability to responsibly use my handgun if I needed to.
Josh is a bit of a talker and loves to tell me about articles he reads, internet videos he watches, and various other content he stumbles upon via social media. He likes to be well informed. I didn’t even realize I was absorbing anything from these conversations with my husband until one day at work, the stylist next to me was talking to her client and the conversation somehow turned to guns. She said something like, “…they want those silencers for their guns.” Without even thinking, I looked at her and said, “they are actually called suppressors, not silencers.” What just happened?!? I quickly apologized for correcting her and explained that i did not mean to say that. I cannot explain the pride that came over Josh’s face when I told him about what happened. he started taking me to gun shows with him and it became something we did together. I enjoyed spending time with Josh and meeting new people, and began to feel like part of the “gun world”. I started to understand the importance of the second amendment and my right to defend and protect myself. I’m not saying that I am equipped to handle a hostage situation or a shooting spree, but I do feel more confident that I could atlas try to protect myself and others. Thats what carrying does for me-it gives me the opportunity to level the playing between attacker and victim. It gives me the chance, however slight it may be, to change my circumstances and that of others.
So here I am, wanting to be a part of an important issue and the people who support it, but also wanting to help other understand more about it, even if they choose not to participate or disagree with me entirely. My goal is to make carrying a part of my daily lifestyle by making it as convenient and as stylish as possible, and to continue to educate myself, while providing some insight into an offbeat feminine perspective fueled with a little bit of help from my husband and his knowledge of America history and how it still profoundly affects our lives. Lord help me.