Here we are, at the beginning of the final year of the first decade of the millennium. This was the iciest New Year that I can remember. I have several thoughts about the change this year.
Two years ago, on January 1, I became a gunny. Never having owned a gun before, I felt highly compelled to buy a Smith & Wesson Model 29, and learn to shoot it effectively. So, Jenni and I went to H&H Gun Range and rented a couple guns and a lane. She rented a S&W M&P9, and I rented a 6-inch M629. Really, I just wanted to make sure I could shoot the thing before making the investment. We were hooked!
At this point, my M29 is my range queen baby, and Jenni carries a M&P9c every day, in combination with her M640. As a side note, we would have gotten her this one instead, had it been available. As it is, we’ll eventually have hers cut for moon clips, and it will essentially be a Pro Series clone. We are both CCW permitted, daily carrying, NRA certified Range Safety Officers, proficient with various action types, avid shotgunners, and accomplished rifle marksmen (in the general sense, not the gender-specific sense).
Our son has gotten in on the action as well. He loves to shoot rifles and handguns chambered in .22lr and .22 short, as well as 9mm, .38Spl, and .410 shotgun. He has tried the 20-gauge on a couple of occasions, and has become a spectacular shot with a sporter-style air rifle with competition sights. He does want to continue to work with the 20-gauge and become proficient with it. My brother and sister-in-law have both gotten their CCW permits, and she actually works at H&H full-time now! I have been making custom, made-to-order, leather holsters, and Jenni has been involved with classes, assisting with teaching women the basics of self-defense and the use of defensive firearms. We’ve done a little basic gunsmithing and have enjoyed every step of the process to get where we are today.
This year, I want to start hand loading. That’s no resolution, per se, so much as it is a loose goal. If I am to resolve to do anything, it is to start hunting. The three of us will take our hunter safety education class together, and we will go shoot some tasty animals this year. My grandpa used to keep his freezer completely filled with game of various sorts. I’ve never been hunting. It’s not as though there weren’t guns in the house as I was growing up, so much as my parents didn’t enjoy shooting nearly as much as I do. Jenni‘s upbringing was a different story, as her mother was frightened of firearms, and would not permit them in the house – even though http://injennifershead.com/’s maternal grandfather was an avid rifleman, and sharp-shooter for the U. S. Army. It is tragically unfortunate that the two of us never had the benefit of the rich gun heritage that could have come from each of our families, but it has been a wonderful journey that we have enjoyed together, and teach our son along the way, giving him the benefit that we never had.
On New Year’s Eve, we ate lamb, and drank Bogle Zinfandel and Coppola Sophia with an intimate group of friends and family, who promptly went home shortly after toasting in the new year, as we do when we get a little older. We partied like it was 1999, two-thousand zero zero, party’s over (whoops) out of time. It seems strange that I can remember ten years ago so clearly. Everyone was all freaked out about the nonexistant “Y2K” scenario, much like everyone is currently all freaked out about the nonexistant “global warming” scare. I was working a crappy job and had a headfull of hair. Now, I’ve got a real job and thinned hair (hence the hats). Ten years ago, millions of people were ignorantly celebrating the new millenium, which incidentally wasn’t going to happen for another year, because they apparently never learned to start counting from the number one. It was a time of excitement. Now, people are freaked out not only by global warming, but also by the state of the economy. If you ask around, people will nearly universally tell you that 2009 was a terrible year in all aspects. I will be one that will claim 2009 as a great year. It wasn’t easy, but it was good. Jenni and I have both faced issues that have subconsciously been clawing away at our confidence and ability to live our fullest. That is the best thing that happened all year. What we share in common with all those that claimed 2009 as a terrible year, is that we are optimistic – and yes – excited to see what 2010 holds for us! This very well may be the best year that we’ve ever had. To that end, I resolve to no longer let the past define me, but to make my own future (I really hope I can keep that). In many ways, the two of us have grown closer and closer in the time we’ve been together, but in other ways it feels like we’ve been wandering in the desert. I refuse to believe that’s the best we can hope for. I believe that we are finally equipped to attempt to grab life by the horns and make it work for us. Whether or not we accomplish anything in the process is another story altogether, but the very attempt sound worth the effort.
I’ve got a good kid, whom I’ve become a lot closer to in the last year. I come from a line of men that have a difficult time getting close to their children. This in turn, produces men who have a hard time getting close to their children. My son has started interacting with us in a far more mature way than ever before. I’ve said and written on multiple occasions that he is quickly ceasing to be a little boy and is turning into a great man. He is making more responsible decisions, he sees the value in intangible concepts that boys have no concept of, and he’s a fun person to be around. I resolve to continue to get closer to my son, and break the cycle that has plagued generations of men in my family. I think I’m on the right track to make that happen. We enjoy doing things together, and he and I have appropriate, mutual respect. How can I expect him to have respect for me if I have none for him?
So, there you have it. Three resolutions for 2010 based on the happenings of this last year, the last several years, and the last ten plus:
1. Get legal and shoot animals.
2. Move forward with Jenni into what can only be an amazing chapter in life.
3. Continue to become closer to my son.
I hope I’ve illustrated above how closely these three things really are, in the context of my life. That’s all for now.