This post was originally published as part of a Guest Post Writing Contest over at ModernSurvivalOnline. It can be seen in its original format HERE.
By Jennifer S. in Reno
Today I woke up and did some house cleaning, I did some laundry and vacuumed the carpets, I harped on the kids to get them to clean their rooms and I changed the cat litter box, I mopped the kitchen floor and made sure all of my dishes were washed. When I was done with that I went to the grocery store. Actually, I went to four grocery stores because I like to go where the good deals are. I like to come home and put my purchased food away and know that my family will have a good dinner and that I saved money doing it. After I came home and stored away my groceries I went into the backyard to hang out with my husband and work on our backyard.
Six months ago, this was a normal Saturday for me. With that being said I would like to say six months ago, I was happy, but also blind.
It all started on a normal day. I believe it was near the end of November, perhaps early December. My husband came home from work and joined me in the kitchen. I was starting dinner and he began to talk to me about things I had never heard of before and quite frankly never would have considered listening too. His topics included HAARP projects, the TSA and Chemtrails. I remember slicing tomatoes and listening to him talk. I also remember looking at him out of the corner of my eye and, while nodding along, thinking to myself “I have married a crazy person.”
Now ladies, you and I both know that most of us would never be so cruel as to tell the men that we love that their new interests or concerns are either crazy or scaring us to death. We pretend to take interest and listen to as much as we can handle before we tune them out. This is exactly what I did over the following 3-5 weeks as the subject matter got broader. His topics ranged from economic meltdown to EMP catastrophes’, to hidden meanings in the artwork at the Denver Airport. I would listen and listen and listen, and then the next day I would pretend I didn’t hear any of it and do what I usually do, clean and make things pretty. I would read through the news from mainstream media and I would watch American Idol or other useless programming to make my life seem normal. I didn’t do these things because I didn’t believe my husband, but because I was trying to forget what he had been talking to me about and pretend that nothing bad could ever happen to me or my family.
Thinking about unfortunate things occurring and planning to protect your family is scary. It’s very disheartening and it’s very hard to buckle down and look at it in a realistic frame of mind. It is much easier to pretend that we are untouchable and that everything will remain as it always has been. If you don’t see it and don’t think about it, it doesn’t exist right? Wrong.
One day at work I decided to research a bit of what he had been talking to me about, I found myself reading some things on alternative news websites and blogs that pertained to the government and other worldwide issues that caught my interest, and then I stumbled upon a few pages referencing natural disaster. I read some scenarios about what could happen (and most likely would happen) if we were not prepared or protected. After I read those, I read some more. Then I read some more. Before I knew it I had been reading for a few hours and realized I was hooked. It never occurred to me the domino effect that any number of SHTF events could have on the world. I never thought of how it could directly affect my family. I never thought of having to protect my family from others who were simply trying to protect themselves. I actually copied one of those articles and emailed it straight to my husband and titled my email with “We should get ready”. That day, was the beginning of our joint effort to prepare to protect our family.
The truth is, not preparing your family before disaster takes place, means that you are actually harming them more than the disaster.
Through my own research and reading and having extensive night time talks with my husband, I began to prep mostly for a natural or manmade disaster. We live in earthquake country so that is a big priority of mine, although I will admit that after I stopped being so stubborn and took of those rose colored glasses I got right after birth, I started to become aware of disasters that have nothing to do with nature and everything to do with our current political system and world leaders. Our children are not old enough to fend for themselves, nor are they old enough to really understand what we are doing for them so it is our job to make sure that if SHTF, we have a strong support system to defend ourselves and our livelihood.
The purpose of my guest post is to try to reach out to other women like myself. Happy women who have never heard of any of this until their husbands brought it up. Happy women who don’t want to think about it and who would prefer to see the world as a place with singing children, cooperative neighbors, and leaders who care. To those women, please think for yourselves; please be strong enough to do some research and listen to not only your husbands, but to formulate your own opinions and ideas. Think outside of the box. Don’t accept the world as it is presented to you. Your loved ones will Thank you for it when the time comes and you have supplies to keep them safe.
There are some very basic and easy ways that you can begin prepping your family for a disaster. Here are some things to start with:
1.) Water. We all need water. We cannot survive after three days without water. What are you going to do if your stores are out of bottled water (think Japan) and your supply has been cut off? Bottled water and other jugs are the easiest. Gallon jugs typically cost less than $1.00 at any local supermarket or you can purchase the packages of individual bottles. (Usually 24 bottles for around $3.00) I prefer the packages because they are easy to stack and easier to store (although the jugs are easier to grab and run with). You can also wash out old soda, milk and juice jugs and fill them with tap water for storage as well although some of these bottles disintegrate quicker than others so do some research on them before you start using those.
2.) Food. Food is easy, but can also be tricky. First off when you go to the store grab two of anything that stores well that you and your family normally eats. The reason this needs to happen is because your body is used to the food. If SHTF and you start eating nothing but canned corn, your body will have a reaction and you will get sick. Make sure to stock up with food items your body is used too but also make sure you grab some items that are less conventional. My favorites (courtesy of my husband) are dehydrated milks (remember, if electricity is down, that milk in the fridge won’t do any good), 100% natural honey (great vitamins and stores forever), dried beans, spam and even other liquid items such as Tang (tastes good, keeps the spirits up and is a great source of Vitamin C).
3.) Other misc., items: Batteries. And lots of them! If you have re-chargeable batteries that’s great but if you lose power it won’t do you any good. Buy extra batteries for everything you intend to use should TSHTF. Make sure that you have plenty of extra flashlights on hand and stock up on candles. Cheap tea lights are better than walking around in the dark. Grab some matches (big boxes are cheap and you can still find strike anywhere matches if you look in the right places!). Get some extra blankets from the goodwill if you don’t already have some in-case the heat goes out. Another priority item should be a weeks’ worth of clothing for everyone in your family, sealed in a vacuum air tight bag so they are ready to grab at a moment’s notice and stay clean and dry in case you have to leave your home.
4.) First Aid Supplies: This is very important, especially if you have kids. Stock up on band-aids, gauze, fever reducer, pain reliever, diarrhea meds, a thermometer, cut ointment and other first aid items you can think of that you might need in case someone is hurt or gets sick. Remember, depending on the size of the catastrophe, doctors might be unavailable and hospitals might be down or overworked. If you have prescription meds, try to stock up on those. I used to think that it wasn’t possible but found a very reputable nationwide chain store that actually fills up to four months if you pay with cash. Call around and see what you can find. It would be smart to also look into homeopathic medicine if you cannot get your hands on prescription meds.
5.) Your Sanity: It’s easy to think that when the time comes, your fight or flight instinct will kick in and you won’t need some of the normal pleasures of life. This would be wonderful if true but I am not willing to blindly try it if I have the option. Try and stock up on a few things to keep yourself and your family entertained. Some hand held electronics or small board games will help. Perhaps some puzzles and books. If you own a portable DVD player it might be a good idea to have that on hand with extra batteries and some movies. This way you are less likely to lose your sanity (and rational thinking) while you are waiting around trying to make it through whatever catastrophe hits.
6.) Last but not least, firearms: Imagine you have prepared your family and SHTF. You are bunkered in your home with food, water, batteries and flashlights. You and your family are getting by and while it is not ideal, you are alive and doing well. Then there’s a knock at your door, you don’t answer it because you are being cautions. Let’s say that whoever is behind that door decides that they are going to break into the house. They come in and see that you have food and water. That’s when you realize that they do not have what you have. Are you willing to share your families’ rations with total stranger? I would guess not. When you tell them that you are not willing to share do you think that they will politely leave and thank you for your time? I doubt it. You need a way to protect your family. I leave this one up to my husband and he has covered the bases.
Once you make an informed decision and think for yourself, it’s easy to start prepping. It’s easy to take the first steps and turn preparedness into a part of your everyday life.
Please think about it and take the proper steps to prepare for your safety. Don’t let disaster strike without having what you need to get through it and in turn letting you and your family suffer. Other people are not going to help you and it will be nobody but yourself and your family looking out for one another. Morals do not exist when people are forced to survive. Make sure you and your loved ones are covered.