A mama bear eats large amounts of food, protects their babies (sacrificing their own life, if they must), enjoys Mother Nature and sleeps a lot.

So do I.

But I take one role a tad more seriously than others: protection.

I’m the mama bear who conceal carries. Yup, that’s right. I have a gun. But you can’t see it, nor should you.

I like to think that all people have goodness in them. Hopefully every human is born with decent intentions and aren’t preparing to kill people as soon as they start wiping their own buns. However, reality exists and we know there are some really, really immoral and malicious people out there who want to hurt people for no good, stinkin’ reason.

What if that person who got hurt for no good, stinkin’ reason was your 4-month-old baby? Your 18-month-old? Your 3-year-old? Your 15-year-old? You?

What if you spent your day at a hospital, hovered over your bruised child, bawling your eyes out, snot dribbling everywhere, screaming “Why?!” because somebody decided that someone was going to get the wrath of pain today?

As parents, we have an innate desire and duty to protect our children. I have very few fears, but my child (and future children) physically hurt is at the top of the list. I’d prefer the IT clown to kill me slowly rather than seeing my family hurt in a situation I could’ve controlled.

When mother bears defend themselves, they try to make themselves look bigger by fluffing up their fur and standing on their hind legs. They’ll growl, pound their paws on the ground and charge toward whatever is disturbing them. Mama bears do not always attack, but after an intimidating “show,” they may not have to… unless necessary.

I so, so wish evil would back away if I fluffed my curly hair like a lion’s mane, threw my arms wide, spread my stance and started screaming profanity loudly. A mama can dream.

Back to the real world: Yeah, if I’m in a Walmart (or any other place that allows concealed carry), I’m going to have my Glock on me. Heaven forbid, I pray the day never comes, but if someone decides they want to start a massacre in the middle of Aisle 4,  I’m going to assess the situation thoroughly and try to eliminate the threat before the threat comes to my child.

What if your child was in that same Walmart? Or your neighbor’s child? Or your sister, nephew or third-cousin-twice-removed? Everyone deserves to be safe from evil.

I have no craving to ever shoot my gun at a person. I really, really hope my children and I live a long life where we never see violence face-to-face.

But, I’m a protector, not a predator or prey. I’m not going to be defenseless and let someone break into my home and point their gun at my child because they want my possessions. I’m not going to be unguarded if I’m walking around the lake after dark and somebody decides to beat me up and proceeds to rape me. I’m not going to let some stranger beat the bloody pulp out of someone else without trying to pull them off to salvage the prey. I’m not going to let someone shout, “I’m going to murder you and your entire family!” without telling them to back down and be on their way. I’m not going to let evil win.

Let me knock out some questions that you obviously have: Yes, I am capable of having a gun. I took a class, I know the laws, I’ve earned my certification and paid for my permit. No, my concealed gun will not go off at a random time and hurt me, my child or anyone else. No, my child cannot get to it and make it go kaboom. No, my gun isn’t my go-to; different situations call for different acts and there are laws. No, I will not go crazy and shoot people for no-good, stinkin’ reason because I am a protector, not a predator or prey.

I’m going to continue to eat large amounts of food (tacos and donuts), enjoy Mother Nature (camping when I can) and sleep a lot (although hibernation sounds better). But you can bet your buns that I’ll be protecting my babies every chance I get.

Justine Meyer

I teach for a living, hopeful to enrich others- while God and my family enrich me without even trying. My main titles include Proud Wife, Mama Bear and Kenny Chesney Groover.