What would you do if you experienced a natural disaster today? Would you be prepared? Could you tend to medical emergencies? We have seen the life threatening effects from hurricanes, earthquakes, fires, and floods yet I don't see very many people taking action to prepare themselves in case of an emergency.... including myself.
Recently, I needed to get something out of my first aid kit for my son and I noticed how depleted of medical supplies my kit has become. I went into a mini panic. I started to think, "What if I was in a life threatening situation right now? I would be screwed!" That feeling gave me a sick pit in my stomach that hasn't really left. As a matter of fact, I keep experiencing things that are reminding me that I need to be more prepared. I need to be able to take care of myself and my kids in times of a natural disaster or medical emergency.
I started taking a look around my home. Questions began to overwhelm me like:
How much fresh water do I have and how long would it last if the water was shut off right now? Where would I get water if stores were closed and roads were closed?
What about food supply? How much do I have and how long will it last?
If my kids or myself were bit by a rattlesnake or black widow spider (very common where I live) would I be able to treat it? What about a gash or CPR?
Questions kept flowing in reminding me of how foolish I have been and how ill prepared I am to provide for myself and my children in times of an emergency despite current events and disasters that have devastated many.
But these extreme situations are not the only thoughts I have been having. I also recently watched a program on the indigenous tribes of the Amazon and how over the past 15 years they have gone from being self reliant to totally dependant on outside sources to provide for their families. I was saddened to put it mildly. I went on a rant explaining how weak of a species we have become. Many of us ignore our human instincts and our innate ability to be self reliant.
We have got to stop expecting outside sources to take care of us and learn how to be self reliant. It seems we are a society full of co-dependant people and what we really need is interdependence (people who can take care of themselves and can contribute). People need to be able to take care of themselves and their families and sadly we are moving further and further away from that. Overall, we are no longer able to provide the basic needs if our life depended on it.
This post is a wake up call. A reminder to get back in touch with life sustaining methods, to be prepared (not paranoid, or frightened) in any situation. There is such a sense of peace and freedom when you can take matters into your own hands.
I want the peace of mind that if anything was to happen I could handle the situation well. I could experience it the hard and unprepared way or I can take the proper actions to where it really doesn't devastate my family because I am not dependant on outside sources and I am self reliant. Here is what I am working on right now:
Teaching my children protocols for natural disasters (such as earthquakes and fires)
Obtaining plenty fresh water to store at my home that will last about a week (about 30 gallons)
Learning about the native wild foods in my area
Creating a diverse seed bank and swap seeds
Learning where to obtain fresh water by bike (findaspring.com)
Eating a diet that is not dependant on cooking (Thank you Raw Food Diet!)
Growing an edible landscape that would provide year round food and medicine for my family that could grow even without watering for a month (lots of fruit and nut trees and avocados)
Refreshing CPR and First Aid skills
Restocking the first aid kit with the following:
Poisonous bites and stings
Rashes, hives, and allergies
Cuts, Scrapes, Deep Gashes
Inflammation, bruising, sprains, strains, broken bones, dislocations
Heat stroke, shock
Eye, ear, throat, & nasal canal care
Fever and cold kit
A quick evacuation kit in a backpack for everyone in my home that would sustain us for 3 days
A goal I have for my family is to be as self reliant as possible. We have decided to start making the proper actions and prepare for a self reliance challenge. Rather than wait for a disaster to force us to live without outside sources I think it would be fun and reassuring to see how a trial run would go. So here is brief rundown of the self reliance challenge:
Self Reliance Challenge
How long and well could you live if you:
Shut off gas, water, electricity to your home
Did not use trash service, sewage, heating, cooling
Were unable to use your car, cell phone, Internet
What if outside help was unavailable such as: police, fire, paramedics, overcrowded emergency rooms/hospitals, grocery stores, etc
What if you were unable to access your money and banks were closed?
How would you feed yourself and your family?
How would you bathe?
What about you? What if you needed to evacuate your home in 10 minutes? Would the important supplies be available quickly? What if you were forced out of your home due to flood, or fire? Where would you live? How would you stay warm or cool? I know it can sound silly to some, but an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure and there is wisdom in learning from those who have experienced such hardships.
So, what about you.....tell me your plan B! How long can you go on the self reliance challenge?