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Thursday, July 16, 2009

Define Your Disaster

Author: The Survival Mom

Until several months ago, the most likely disasters in my life involved my nail tech quitting or my husband insisting on a homemade dinner! How times have changed. Now when I think of disasters, I’m thinking more along the lines of The End of Days scenarios with an unsettling feeling they could happen now, in my lifetime.

For which disaster, or disasters, should I prepare? These days of hard, uncertain times it’s a little like playing the odds. Hmmmmm, should I prepare for a nuclear attack? If so, I’ll need an enormous amount of sheet plastic, duct tape, and I read somewhere that you’re better protected if you have a few feet of earth piled up against your outside walls.

Wouldn’t our HOA love that?

Really, is my very first concern a nuclear attack? No! The odds are much better for a dramatic increase in crime and riots in certain parts of our city. Even better odds favor a deep decline in our incomes and possibly losing our home to foreclosure. It just makes sense to, first, define the most likely disasters, and then prepare for each as best you can.

Since the catastrophic event most likely to affect us is loss of income, that’s where my focus has been. Some time ago I turned our spare room into a pantry, and my goal has been to store at least six month’s worth of food. We may lose our home, but baby, when we slink out in the middle of the night, we’ll have full tummies! I’ve also fought hard to save every penny I can.

If we lived in an area prone to earthquakes, that would be near the top of my priorities. Urban dwellers may put personal and home protection at the top of their lists.

If you’ve been into the survival mode for a while, life changes over time and so will your concerns and priorities. It’s worth taking a second look, now, to see if your prepping needs adjusting.

Here are a few possible disasters to consider. Which ones are most likely to affect you?

* natural disasters — Mother Nature at her worst: wildfires, floods, earthquakes, drought, hurricanes, and more

*personal disasters — loss of job, decreased work hours, illness or injury affecting your ability to work, your mother-in-law moving in

*nuclear events — including, but not limited to, an Electro-Magnetic Pulse and actual mushroom clouds

*terrorist attacks — use your imagination. Terrorists certainly do!

*social unrest — riots, car-jackings, increased violent crimes of all types, prison escapes

* war of any kind

*biological catastrophe — spread of diseases/pandemics

*loss of your sense of humor ;o)

After thinking it over and talking with my husband, here is the list I wrote for our family.

1. loss of income
2. loss of home
3. an event of any kind that occurs while my family members are scattered at different locations around the city
4. violent crime against my children, my husband or myself
5. pandemic disease (The recent H1N1 has me a little concerned, still.)
6. decrease in water supply (We live in the desert.)
7. Electro-Magnetic Pulse (everything electronic gone in a moment, forever. Hello, 10,000 B.C.)

With some planning and prepping, you realize you have more control over how these events will affect your family than you might think. The key is to identify likely calamities and then take action.

What is Number One on your list? The first item will be whatever you believe is most likely to happen. Once you’ve made your own list, you can begin planning what to do to prepare for each one.

Simply taking this step puts you light years ahead of millions of people, and I believe it will give you and your family some peace of mind no matter what happens.

Share your list with the readers of this blog, when you’ve finished. I’d love to see how your planning is coming along!

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