How to Handle a Loud Thud at Night

How to Handle a Loud Thud at Night
How to Handle a Loud Thud at Night
How to Handle a Loud Thud at Night
How to Handle a Loud Thud at Night

A few weeks ago, I showed people an email from a fellow who thought he had an intruder in his house. It turned out to be his dog getting its leash caught in its cage, but the fact is, this gentleman didn’t have his gun loaded and it took him a while to get ready to protect himself.

Well, until last week, it had been a few years since I’d had any similar scares in my own house. But about 12:30am last Thursday night, I heard a loud thud in my house that woke both my wife and I up. I grabbed my flashlight on my nightstand, opened my rapid access safe, went out into the hallway, and stood at the top of the stairs with my gun and light pointing down the stairs.

If I had to guess, it took me about 6 seconds to go from sleeping to being at the top of the stairs with my loaded gun. The reason I went to the top of the stairs is because the thud sounded like somebody was on their way up the stairs and I wanted to stop the “threat” before it got any closer to my wife or to my daughter’s room.

At the top of the stairs, I waited a bit but I didn’t see anything or hear anyone…

So I slowly began to clear my house, which isn’t a quick task if you’re going to do it correctly. After I’d cleared my house, my wife and I went back to bed. But because the thud was so loud and sounded like it was coming up the stairs, we’d had a nice dose of adrenaline and neither of us could fall back to sleep.

As we laid there my wife said, “I know what the thud was.” She walked to our hallway closest, which is right next to the stairs, opened it up, and our air mattress tumbled out. Earlier that week, my wife had been at a church camp with the girls in our church and had used the air mattress.

She obviously didn’t put it away right (which probably means I was the one that put it away)…

And when it fell off the top shelf, it did make a pretty loud noise. (This isn’t the type of air mattress I use when I go camping. This is the type with the built in air pump that weighs a ton and you might as well bring a real bed camping if you’re going to use it.)

Obviously, I was very thankful that nobody was in my house, but it was nice to know that everything went according to plan and my “home defense” training paid off. What I mean is, at least once a month I’ll lie in bed and pretend there’s a home intruder. I then see how quickly I can get my gun and flashlight and then I evaluate if I need to rearrange any of my gear.

And like I said, it took me about 6 seconds from a dead sleep to be at the top of the stairs with my loaded gun. I was able to do this because of practice and a good gear arrangement that works for my situation.

I know I’ve said this numerous times before, but I encourage you to practice what you plan to do in a home invasion scenario. If there’s ever a home invasion, you need to operate on “autopilot” so you don’t hesitate and you don’t wonder where your gun is or where you should go. It should all be second nature.