Memory Lane

I cleaned out all my shooting gear this afternoon. Similar to my prodding regarding going over your gear regularly to re-oil guns, to see what needs throwing out like dead band aids or pens that no longer work, and  to write lists of purchasing needs like more ammo or bore brushes, I followed my own advice. Cleansing physically and emotionally, my garage needed a make over. The travel down memory lane tripped many good recollections. I found old score cards and target journals. Mostly, the remarks I tracked in these journals in my early days of competition helped the most- not the dots on the miniature target pictures as per my fired rounds. A mental game, if our mind does not focus on and stay locked in on the basic fundamentals of marksmanship, studying all past target hits won’t help, even reviewing our really great targets. This took me a long time to comprehend. But, once I understood this, along with other salient psychological processes like, “I compete against my last match fired, not against the shooters I stand shoulder to shoulder with,” I took off.  Today, amongst my many treasures, I unearthed my old PPC semi-automatic gun belt still holding the holster and the magazine pouches. I, of course, buckled the belt on, even though I no longer have the associated pistol, the pistol I won top female sharpshooter with my very first National Police Shooting Championship in 1999. The government took the gun back when they decided my work injuries allowed them such decisions in 2004. I guess, when these people achieved management promotions, they also received medical degrees. Those many years ago, I felt bitter, but today, I felt triumphant. Customs did not make me a great shooter. I already had that in me. Customs provided the means by which I learned what my natural talent was and the training to enhance it, but they did not give it to me. Therefore, they cannot take it away. I am a winner and will always be one. And, my garage looks great.

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"I worked as a Federal Law Enforcement Officer for over 14 years, in a firearms carrying capacity. First assigned to LAX (1994), then to the Los Angeles/ Long Beach Seaport (1997-2007), I took an early retirement from my final duty station of El Paso, TX (2007-2008). Never having handled firearms prior to this job, I give full credit for my initial shooting lessons and safe firearms handling skills to the government. As I began to compete, I gleaned tips and coaching lessons from the best law enforcement instructors across the nation, turning myself into one of the best, too. I was a firearms instructor in Los Angeles and a national level competitor on a formally sponsored team from 1999 through 2003, being sent all over the nation for pistol match competitions. As a result of this gift of an experience, I went on to set five national records in the law enforcement shooting sports. Check in regularly to read about those and other adventures and misadventures!"
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