For me, Robert, I think that anyone that has not been in a fight will not do well at all in a gunfight. It may sound silly but after that first crisp jab to the nose the ticking nano seconds in your head are crucial to whether or not you take the real hit. Just as if someone kicks down your door or smashed a window, the next decision you make is the one to live or die. Ideally, right after that jab lands you roll left or right. I have been in many fights. Most of them were expected (self defense and whatnot), some of them not so. I truly believe that taking a punch in the face in a real full contact regulated fight is a great determining factor on how you will do in a real world ‘surprise’ crisis. Knowing what it feels like to be hit in the face and actually having your senses knocked out momentarily trains you to know it and respond favorably.
The first time I was jabbed, really jabbed by my instructor I literally watched in slow motion as he straight punched me in the stomach as hard as he could. I could do nothing but gasp because even though I expected the punch to come from somewhere the hit and how my brain responded was a completely new thing to me. I did some full contact sparring with friends and over time the surprise didn’t go away but the freezing did. I learned to go either left or right and in that split second you are not a sitting duck. The same is true with a home invasion. The second that window smashes you can either watch the arm come in and unlock your door or you can pull your weapon and engage the threat.
It is my solid belief that if you have never been in that ‘dazed’ or surprised state a few times to recognize it, you will be a victim. Whatever weapon is on you, whatever training you have, if it did not involve actual scenarios where you were taken by surprise – you will fail. Learning about it is too late when you are in the moment. There is no thinking in the surprised state. Just favorable reaction. The guy coming in is ramped up, he is ready to go, he has the element of surprise. Learning to not think is what we need. Learning to have thought it out ahead of time and prepared for it is what we need.
I have security spot lights outside my home and garage, barred windows and doors (crappy area), alarm system w/trip in case of cuts, individual window and door alarms that shriek (good for locating the area that was breached), the room I sleep in has its door shut and locked, my gun is under the bed, my ammo next to it, a hammer and knife hidden on a stand next to me. My wife has a phone on her side, one on mine. Flashlight is in the drawer next to me. I have always slept light and I tell myself before I sleep at night that I may be woken unexpectedly and to be ready. I pray.
I would like to think I am ready. As ready as I can be at the moment.