The Joys of Prepping, by V.R.

Who said prepping couldn’t be fun?   Granted, prepping is something that should be taken seriously, but in our journey to prepare for a possible eventual catastrophe we can enjoy the ride.  I think of it as setting up home, going camping and uniting the family all wrapped up in one. 

In my eagerness and urgent desire to see friends and family prepare for an oncoming disaster, either natural or manmade, I feel like I have frightened or overloaded them into inaction.  Discouraged by my lack of persuasion I was reminded of one of Aesop’s fables where the Sun and the Wind argued as to who was stronger.  During their passionate debate, the Sun saw a traveler walking down a road wearing his coat.  The Sun suggested that the one able to get him to remove his coat was indeed the strongest.  The Wind accepted the challenge and started blowing as hard as he could.   The stronger he blew, the tighter the man held on to his coat.  After the Wind did all he could, he gave up assured that nothing would get the man to remove his coat.  At last the Sun came out and spread his warmth over the traveler at which time he removed his coat settling the question of who was the strongest. 

In like manner, many of us eager preppers have distanced people from us through fear and have paralyzed them into doing nothing.  This should give us pause to reflect whether it is more important to be right or to get results.  If our love and care is greater than our need to be right, we need to put away the strength of the Wind and bring out the warmth of the Sun.  It would behoove us to limit conversations by merely drawing awareness to recent catastrophic news reports and offering bite-size solutions for averting potential calamities for their families.

When I was a child, I found a grove of pine trees near our home.  The limbs were full and low seemingly impenetrable, but for some reason I ventured in and found a tree-lined cathedral inside.  I was in awe!  In my childlike state I imagined it to be my home secure from all external danger.  I immediately went to work clearing the area of debris and setting up house.  I found pine boughs to use as a sweeper and used stumps as tables and chairs.  When satisfied with my work, I invited my friends to join me for imaginary tea parties as we enjoyed playing house all summer long. 

Just as the grove of trees seemed impenetrable so many years ago, preparing adequately for the myriad of catastrophic scenarios that could befall us seemed overwhelmingly impossible.  Once I embraced its eventuality, I found comfort in the shadow of its boughs through like-minded individuals sharing their knowledge in books, web sites and blogs.  I gained a sense of security through a cyber-family where all were welcome and useful information was shared.

In like manner, I always enjoyed camping.  Half the fun of camping was seeing how much I could pack in very little space.  It was almost like playing house with miniature objects.   As I got older, my camping skills became sharper, better…more creative and sometimes more expensive.  Camping became a game for me.  The object of the game was to provide as many comforts of home without taking much space and without compromising the outdoor experience.  

Prepping is much like camping, yet is far more encompassing which allows for more creativity and many more alternatives.  The explorations of these options expand the mind and unite individuals in a like cause.

I’m older now but the little girl in me is still alive and well.  I still like setting up home and camping in the woods, but now I have a husband to share my joys.  I am blessed that we have the same mindset concerning prepping.  I don’t need to convince him, nor does he have to convince me to invest money and time in preparing for potential calamities. 

The bond between us has grown through our prepping odyssey.  We compare notes and plan our next purchases.  We organize, arrange, design, and frame our goals as we continue to build our future together.  When we started our journey, in our eagerness to increase damage control, we started out thinking big.  But as we researched alternatives, we learned how to compact things in our modest home to maximize our limited resources.  

We don’t have the funds to set up a camp in Iowa with barbed wires and endless guns and ammunition; however, we can be somewhat comfortable in strained conditions.  Our goal is to remain strong in times of trouble so we can help others and offer them hope.  Though everyone’s objectives may be different, the important thing is to have attainable goals and take the necessary steps to reach them.

Sometimes I question whether we are doing enough or whether we’ll survive, but then I remember that our future is in God’s hands.  Eventually, we will all meet our creator.  Whether it is now or later, I’m having fun and life is good.