We always tell ourselves “it will never happen to me.” And, for the most part, we’re right. It rarely happens to us. But when it does, and you are not prepared, it can be a real bummer.
September 18, coming home from a long series of depositions, I tripped over a piece of concrete. In trying to catch myself with my right hand, I fractured my right wrist. I didn’t hear it break, I thought I sprained it. But radiographs don’t lie.
My right hand was my shooting hand.
Oh, sure, every time I went to the range I shot 5 to 10 rounds left handed and always hit the target, but I never gave much thought to actually training hard with my left hand because left handed shooting was just there in case something…happened …. To my…. Right hand. Oh shit. Something happened to my right hand! I did not have any way to draw or manipulate a firearm with my right hand for 10 weeks. And it has only been the last four weeks when I have been able to get any movement out of that wrist. The doc says it will never be 100%. I will have severe limitations on movement and flexibility. (“Hey, you’re 62 dumbass!”)
I have, for the last few years when I went to the range (usually monthly) trained in the Israeli manner. Israelis traditionally do not carry a round in the chamber. They draw, chamber, and fire. I had gotten pretty good with it. I would say I was within one half a second of most other people who draw from concealment, flip off a safety, and fire. But now my vaunted Glock 19 would either need to be carried with a round in the chamber, or I would need to carry a cocked and locked 1911, or my Sig P229.
I considered just carrying the Sig. It’s big, and bulky, and difficult to conceal. It’s .40 caliber so it kicks like a Missouri mule. I have difficulty with follow-up shots. Then there is the weight. It is significantly heavier than the Glock. The idea of having a gun the size of a sack of concrete and about the same weight did not appeal to me. But I strapped it on and after the cast came off I practiced drawing from concealment with an empty firearm. I dropped it twice. The weight unloaded was more than my damaged wrist could maintain, and I became convinced that I’d be lucky to get only one shot off with the Sig.
I considered the 1911 but I found, carrying it IWB for a couple of weeks, that the safety had an annoying habit of getting taken off by movement, and so I did not feel safe carrying the 1911.
So that left either chambering the rounds in the Glock and carrying that way, or drawing from concealment with my left hand, with a left-hand holster.
So, have you looked for a left-handed holster recently? I tried Cabelas, Bass Pro, my local gun shops, and finally came up with a left-handed holster. The problem: it was for a S&W M&P 2.0. Ugh. If you’re a lefty, you’re pretty much left to catalogs to get a holster because I can assure you that even big super-stores do not carry something you can evaluate in person.
So I said to the guy at Jimmy’s Guns (Best gun store in Fort Walton Beach, FL, BTW), let me see a M&P 2.0. I loved the fact that it had a visual cue as to whether the weapon had a round chambered. I loved that it accommodated a 17 round magazine. I liked the serrations on the slide. But I really enjoyed the safety that was ambidextrous and intuitive. And that’s how I would up with my newest firearm.
Here it’s shown with the 17 round magazine. I found this “warning” interesting
The sights are very nice, although this photo doesn’t do them justice:
I like the feel of the weapon, if not how the weapon feels. Here’s a view of the grip
Wait a minute, you say. That sentence doesn’t make sense. Well, of course not, I wrote it. But here’s what I meant. I love the way the pistol feels in my hand. The grip is firm, perfectly sized, and comes up to a perfect sight picture from my left hand. It is easily as lightweight as my Glock, and it has better stippling, something like skateboard tape, on the grip. But the same stuff that makes it aces to hold on to makes it feel like you’re mating with a porcupine when it’s up against your skin, which is usually necessary when you’re carrying IWB with your shirt out.
So, it would appear that I am going to have to get myself a different holster for my new left-handed gun while I work on rehabilitating my right-handed shooting. And I will have to train like a maniac in the interim with my left hand. Because I will not carry a firearm if I cannot draw and fire safely. Safety is, after all, our primary responsibility.