Hey there, ever have a significant life disruptor that charges into your happy little world and throws it off kilter? How about just seasons where you find yourself rolling on your merry way and suddenly you wake up one morning and realize that months, or even years, have passed and things aren’t quite the same? Well, let me backtrack, just a bit. We all know that ammunition hasn’t been easy to find in the past three years and though it’s getting better, thank goodness, shooting and training cost a small fortune thus limiting both. Add a major health crisis that greatly diminished my eyesight (ooh, I feel an article coming on shifting to a red dot) and grip strength, and I found myself discontent with my declining gun handling skills and performance. Last year, I faced the realization that I needed to make a decision: I could either work hard to retrain with the gun I’ve been using for the past eight years, or finally make the transition to another gun that I had just purchased that fit me beautifully, but I wasn’t yet shooting well. Meet my beautiful new sisters: the Walther PDP-F series in both 3.5 and 4 inch.
Sponsored by Walther
Now, let’s be honest. It’s not an easy decision. Changing guns (and even my sights), meant that I had to get accustomed to a new grip, new feel, new weight, new trigger and new holster. The first few times I took the guns on the range, I was embarrassed at how awkward I was, and it was in front of a lot of people so it kind of bruised my ego. However, I also realized that sometimes at the end of a difficult season, you can have a fresh start. I also wanted to be a good example to the ladies at my shooting chapter and embrace the challenge, so I decided to take the plunge.
I admit it was not easy, but I was determined to transition to my new gun and feel as comfortable and competent as possible before I relied on it. I want to encourage those of you who are holding back on changing your gun to one that suits you better to make that transition. Remember when you switched from typing with two fingers to using both hands? “But, but I’m so fast with two fingers!!” Hey, if you’re able to go faster even if it takes a bit of work, isn’t it worth the effort?
If you’ve read any of my other articles and gun reviews, you know that my hands are tiny. The Walther PDP-F fits my hand beautifully. I can finally reach the trigger without breaking a solid grip. Yes, I’ve been shooting a gun that’s too big for my hand fairly well, but, you know, like two-finger typing. I liked that Walther had a compact length for carry as well as a longer length I could use for more extensive training. I love the stippling on the grip that is rugged without being too aggressive. I absolutely love how easily I can reach the mag release for quick changes. I did feel like I was starting from scratch because there were so many things I had to get used to – including the trigger.
Of course, I got all the fixin’s I needed: holsters, mag pouches, sights, shoes, purses … oh wait. Doesn’t everyone need new purses to match their new gun? Anyway, I did get a couple of outside-the-waistband and inside-the-waistband holsters just so I could train and wear them in multiple ways. Unfortunately, in the past six months I didn’t get to shoot as much as I wanted to (life of an instructor: always on the range but hardly ever getting to shoot). However, I DID make a huge effort to dry fire almost daily because I knew that I wanted to use these two guns at our annual A Girl and A Gun National Conference and I didn’t want to make a fool of myself!
Working hard to take it to the range, strengthen my grip, dry fire perfectly from the holster, and carry daily at home and more frequently outside the home really helped me to transition to my new guns.
The big event arrived, and I admit I was nervous. If I didn’t perform well, I told myself it would be fine; I’m still getting used to the trigger and the new sights and it wasn’t a competition. I admit I was tempted to take my old gun and use it. Like a good girl, I left it at home and fully committed to working with the Walthers. And you know what?
I kind of rocked it. The guns performed flawlessly, and I was so pleased. The most nerve-wracking was using it in my sub-second draw class. Little peephole into my mind: I toyed with the idea of playing sick for that class. True story. But I was so glad I didn’t because I nailed that target in one second flat. Editor’s note: We have the video to prove this worthy feat!
I consider it still early in my journey and I’d love for you to continue on it with me, but I have to admit at this point I am super pleased about how it’s going. I will take the summer to live fire more often and I’m still trying to figure out my optics, but I know that with continued determination and training, I will be more confident and competent with this transition.
Are you interested in seeing Walther’s PDP-F line? Check it out here.