When I came across this video, “Lessons Learned After 1 Year of Concealed Carry” by Armed & Style’s Tessah, I considered waiting to watch until I had a year of daily CCW in my rearview mirror. But still six months out from that date, I reconsidered, hoping there would be a nugget of wisdom or moral support I could take advantage of now.
So it came as no surprise that I found myself yet again inspired by a reassuring 10-minute introspective nestled inside the Langdon Tactical Discover series. It had been a minute since I’d sought out some honestly delivered advice that might apply to my personal concealed-carry journey. Recommitted to my own CCW journey, I am still all in, and I wanted to check in with the women who contribute to this series. Even though Tessah’s video was created two years ago and has been viewed more than 14K times—perhaps even by you—I find it to be timeless.
Tessah reflects on her growth from going to the range and shooting .22s with her encouraging husband, to eventually deciding a revolver was the best choice for her to carry (until it wasn’t). She also identifies crimes that occurred in or near her neighborhood as the wakeup calls she needed to reinforce her decision to carry daily—even though daily carry was not initially a priority for her. It many ways it correlates to what I have experienced half way into my first year of occasional carry, so I was glad to listent to such a relatable story.
An important lesson Tessah drives home is to be cautious with whom you share your concealed-carry status. Not everyone comprehends the seriousness of your decision to carry, and therefore might not operate with the necessary discretion needed to guard your privacy. Has anyone ever lifted up your shirt (uninvited) to check to see if you’re carrying? While I haven’t yet experienced that level of invasion of privacy, Tessah has, and she details that incident in this video. However, I, too, was recently put in an awkward situation by my hairdresser of 20 years. She and I are simpatico is most ways, definitely politically. We aren’t best friends, but we are far from just acquaintances. Although she doesn’t yet own a gun, she is very pro 2A and we often discuss my work. She is a smart and usually savvy woman.
That’s why it came as a total surprise to me that, when I was departing her work station, she reached down for my purse that was still on the floor, handed it to me and exclaimed, “Wow, that’s heavy, you must be carrying!” I was gobsmacked, as there were two other clients sitting on each side of her station. I didn’t take time to notice their expressions, but I also quickly retorted, “Those are my phones; they’re heavy,” and turned and walked away. The fact is that I was not carrying (again, that convenience factor Tessah talks about), but had I been purse carrying, there's no chance whatsoever that I would have left it unattended on the floor of her station while my hair was being washed. Not cool, I thought. I will have a frank conversation with her at my next visit. She meant no harm and she wasn’t being malicious or intentionally snarky, but it created a moment of breathtaking angst. As with Tessah, it was a good lesson that not everyone considers the position you are put in when you are called out for carrying.
If you are just embarking on your concealed-carry journey, take 10 minutes to watch this video (and the others in the Langdon Tactical Discover series). You’ll feel a world of support and encouragement.
—Ann Y. Smith, Editor in Chief