I should have known when I vomited directly on my neighbor’s shoes out of nowhere that the negative result on the prior week’s pregnancy test might have been wrong. One more ClearBlue stick later, I was staring at two pink lines and bouncing around in my bathroom like a kid on Christmas, but with morning sickness.
If I hadn’t carried a firearm diligently before, I knew this was all the more reason for me to do so now. I wasn’t just protecting my own life any longer, I was protecting another—my child.
There are plenty of sources for reading up on all the harmful things pregnant women can’t eat, medications to avoid and activities to put on hold during the longest nine months of our lives. Sadly, I found there were no readily available resources about the best ways to carry my firearm now that I was also carrying a baby. It seemed like a taboo subject for me to post about on social media in 2012 (ironic for me to admit now, I know), but I was also the first of my friends to be pregnant. I ended up with incomplete information that deterred me from feeling comfortable in my pre-pregnancy, self-defense abilities. I wasn’t just protecting my own life any longer, I was protecting another—my child.
Instead of treating pregnant women as disabled, it is best to approach this critical developmental period with the same straightforward information that we have available to us at all other times, especially when it comes to issues like carry preferences: While you may have previously favored hip holsters, by the second and third trimesters you’ll likely be forced to consider other options such as ankle holsters, as maternity pants don’t have a band, but instead an elastic panel.
By the time I was pregnant with my daughter, I had found videos and a community of like-minded individuals through the National Rifle Association and other groups. Videos such as this one from Julie Golob focus on the practical aspects of concealed carry throughout pregnancy. By increasing the amount of meaningful information available to mothers-to-be regarding firearms and their practical utility, we can reduce unnecessary risks. You can’t make informed decisions about what is best for you if you are uninformed. Knowledge takes the fear and uncertainty out of a situation; in this case, using a firearm for self-defense.
What we too often see is a blanket statement of “guns are dangerous.” Take, for instance, Michael Bloomberg’s political group Moms Demand Action. Parents are bombarded with fear and emotional manipulation regarding the possibility that their own child may be a victim of violence. While this is a fear all parents share, MDA and other like groups capitalize on that fear as a segue to indoctrinate them into a new era of alarm. And that emotion is exactly what anti-gun politicians prey upon during election seasons. Well-intentioned mothers and fathers get caught in the middle of either “caring about their children” or “caring about their choice of self-defense” with no allowance for any semblance of middle ground.
Here is the underlying conflict between protectors of our Constitution and those who wish to whittle it away, best surmised by the father of psychology himself, Dr. Sigmund Freud: “Most people do not really want freedom, because freedom involves responsibility, and most people are frightened of responsibility.” We all ultimately want the same things—for our children to be safe, to be protected and to come back home to our arms at the end of each day.
We all ultimately want the same things—for our children to be safe, to be protected and to come back home to our arms at the end of each day.
Yet anti-gun advocates ignore stories like the pregnant mother in Phoenix who scared off a home intruder with her firearm earlier this month. She awoke to the sound of breaking glass in her home around 2 a.m. A phone call to police could not have saved them, but thankfully her gun did. She was able to safely call authorities once the immediate threat had been handled and two little lives, in addition to her own, were saved. Had she not felt responsible for their safety and left it in the hands of someone else, this might have had a tragic ending. These are not stories you see championed in the news, but they happen each and every day.
If you make the choice to continue carrying while your body plays host to your tiny human(s), prepare to have that decision challenged as time goes on—but you don’t have to defend that choice by yourself, because it is a right. Mothers like me, Julie Golob, Dana Loesch and countless other Second amendment advocates around the country will do this with you.
I challenge you to think for yourselves. Draw your own conclusions. Don’t believe Moms Demand Action and other organizations that call themselves “safety” organizations without providing any tangible safety information. Their motives should be closely scrutinized. While many of their members truly are just fellow citizens that want to see crime and tragedy reduced, the leaders and mouthpieces have bigger plans in mind. As fellow community members, parents in the school pickup lines, and neighbors, it is our job to help inform them of the truth about our right to keep and bear arms.