Yeah I said it and it may be gratuitous use of the word or it may be real. Read on to find out.
From a very young age there are so many things that we prepare for in life. We prepare for our first day of school by shopping for “school clothes” and supplies. We prepare for exams by studying information so that when tested the knowledge can be recalled. We prepare for dates by putting on our best clothes and putting our best foot forward. We prepare for job interviews. We prepare for buying our first home. We prepare for health issues. We prepare for a wedding…a child…a car accident…a shower…dinner…the list goes on and on.
The truth of the matter is that “prepping” is already ingrained into our everyday lives. We are already a people that have been taught, by word, deed and experience to prepare for life events. For today’s purposes I am speaking to what is commonly referred to as “disaster prepping”, “WTSHTF prepping”, “survival prepping” or, most recently “doomsday prepping”. Well let me tell you folks, when it’s put like that not only is it not sexy but it sure doesn’t sound like much fun or something that I would want to do. Why would I want to subject myself and my family to living in a cloud of fear and paranoia about the end of the Mayan calendar, the zombie apocalypse, the murderous rampage my neighbors might go on if the local Wallyworld closes during an economic collapse, or a host of other terrors propagated by the media and fear mongers? Let me be clear, I wouldn’t want to live in fear, I don’t want to live in fear and so I prepare for every day possibilities and that, in and of itself, prepares me for the crazy ones.
Food & Water: Yes we need them to survive. And…we enjoy them. Many, if not most, of our actitivies can be connected with food – dates, business lunches, fast food playgrounds, holiday feasts, family picnics, etc. Food is something we need and we enjoy. There may indeed come a time when grocery store shelves get wiped clean (this happens already have you ever been to your local grocer on a Wednesday morning when they are having a great sale and everyone has their super duper coupons to compound that great deal. There’s nothing worse than craving brown sugar poptarts and needing deodorant and not getting either because the extreme couponers got there before you). It’s possible. You need only look to areas that can get severe weather – many friends this year spoke of the crazy lines when severe snow storms or hurricanes were announced. I also originally come from a state where the threat of a great earthquake is always in the back of people’s minds. Having food and water is essential for when a “natural disaster” happens, for the possibility of a trucker strike, for the power being knocked out and stores not being able to ring people up. Having your food/water storage gives you insurance and puts you ahead of the game in these scenarios. Let me tell you when else it’s great to have food (and water – and other beverages) stored in your basement: when you get laid off and are out of work for several months. Having food in your basement allows you to sustain yourself and your family instead of relying on the generosity of friends or the welfare of your church or government. There’s nothing wrong with asking for help – but there’s everything right about preparing yourself and having the confidence and dignity of knowing you are taking care of your own. It’s also really great to have when unexpected expenses come up: $820 car repairs that take up nearly three months of your grocery budget (I should be on my mechanic’s Christmas card list for sure by now!), medical bills, roof repairs, etc. In addition it’s really good to have “extra” food around when you just want to use your week’s worth of grocery money to get your hair cut and colored and buy a new bra so that you can feel like a real woman again instead of the frumpy wife and mom and disaster prep lady. I can be a devoted wife, nurturing mom and responsible prepper and still enjoy a little vanity.
Weaponry: Here is one that I leave to you to choose what weaponry best fits you, your family and your beliefs. I am a believer In my second amendment right to keep and bear arms, and so I do. I have no intention of ever having to use them. And, I make sure that everyone in my house has respect for themselves and the guns and that they are trained to use them safely and effectively. You may choose that having a firearm in your house goes against that you stand for. More power to you. If that’s your choice than be sure to empower yourself with other weaponry, taser, pepper spray, knives, etc. and the simple and all important art of hand to hand combat and/or self defense. Keeping yourself in good health, including, working out is important for your everyday skills and would be very important if you found you needed to flee someone, or if you had to hike a bit to get home. And, of course, staying physically fit also keeps you…you guessed it…sexy.
Medical goods: Now I’m not advocating that every person needs to have a surgery cabinet complete with sterilized scalpels, casting equipment and a dental drill (though if that’s your thing by all means go for it). It is important to have a good kit of medical supplies. Create a stash of basics including but not limited to pain killers, bandages in several sizes, gauze, medical tape, Neosporin, steri-strips, etc. Also be aware of the different ages of people in your family. If you’ve got small kids than be sure to have on hand medicines suitable for young children. Essential oils are other products that I feel are important to have on hand for them very many medicinal and other uses.
Misc. goods: flashlights, batteries, home tools, multi-tools, skills (sewing, crocheting, butchering, cheese making, basic construction, etc. )the list could go on and on about misc. supplies to have. This however, if just an introduction to what you may want to begin with. Ironically, in the middle of writing this on my computer last night a severe wind and rain storm knocked my power out and I learned the inconvenient way that it’s important to make sure that flashlights get returned to their proper places and to be sure to check batteries regularly!
Here’s the bottom line, prepping does not need to be rooted in fear, anxiety and stress. Preparing yourself and your family for unforeseen circumstances is something you are already doing in small parts with your health insurance, your car insurance, your life insurance, etc. I’m simply inviting you to extend a little further in having some additional, tangible items on hand. Don’t allow yourself to become overwhelmed with the thousands of dollars of supplies that people may tell you you MUST have. Begin where you can with what you can. Everyone can buy an extra bag of rice, some can buy an extra case of corn, others might be able to buy a one month supply of #10 cans of freeze dried food. Prepare a list of what you want and then just take action with one item at a time. Call it prepping. Call it insurance. I call it confidence. Confidence in knowing that my family and I are prepared for a layoff, for an earthquake, for anything else that may come our way. Confidence can give you peace of mind. And hey, what’s sexier than a confident man or woman?
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