The Time in Between the Moments, by Paul G.

So you are a prepper. You have trained yourself for survival, bought survival gear, and built up personal survival items not only for yourself, but for your family as well. You’re even thinking about how to improve your plans, modify your techniques, and seek continuing to educate yourself with additional survival skills. Then TEOTWAWKI situation happens and everything goes to heck for a day, a week, or maybe even your lifetime. There could be an economic collapse with looting situations, severe weather scenarios causing mass casualties, natural disasters wiping out the power grid, or you may even be in an unfortunate car accident.  TEOTWAWKI may last for weeks or may only last for a minute.  Whatever happens, you have to move from being a person in preparation into a person of action in a fraction of a second’s time. Are you ready? What is more important is that are you ready for the time in between the moments one must push him or herself from being a prepper into being a doer?

My experience with “time in between the moments” came as a result of my experience being an Iraq War veteran during my deployment in 2004. I was in the 1544th Transportation Company in the Army National Guard unit out of Paris, Illinois. My job or “preparations” was suppose to be a petroleum specialist, but soon I found myself in force protection, as combat life saver, and a mechanic as the needs of the army determined what I needed to be at the time. Before deployment, I was working as a special education teacher in a small rural community and already had the mentality of always continuing my education like must educators do and try to foster in their students. When called to active service, I spent even more time preparing during winter months in Wisconsin for service in the deserts of Iraq! I dedicated myself to learn more about combat life saving, mechanic skills, physical training, and other land navigation skills. I was prepping. I was a prepper. I thought I was prepared. I made the mistake of thinking that prepping was all there was to do for survival. I was wrong. The life lesson I learned and wish to pass to you the reader is preparing is what is to be done when you’re safe, in times of peace, and there is civility between you and your neighbors. Survival is not prepping. Survival is what you have to do with your preparations, skill set, and God given talents.

My company was not even in country “so to speak” for 24 hours when mortar rounds dropped on Log Base Seitz and we lost a very brave soldier that day. Sgt. Phipps was a great inspiration as he was the one of the few soldiers who preached to everyone that we needed to be ready and prepared for what we had in store for us in Iraq and unfortunately he was the very first casualty (eventually the company would lose four more young and brave soldiers).  I remember that day well. The mortars exploded and I was stuck in between the moments and was a watcher to my surroundings with all my prior training and prepping just waiting to be utilized, but nowhere to go. I was stuck in between the moment. I was not going anywhere and no use to anybody.  This continued between the first and second explosions until a little divine voice spoke to me and said THINK, MOVE, SURVIVE, and HELP OTHERS. I was lucky. I was able to hear the voice. I started to become a doer and no longer just a prepper.

When a survival situation happens, whatever it may or whenever it may come, the voice I first heard that day propelled me from being a prepper and becoming a doer. The experience felt that day is hard to put into words but the lesson I wish to tell others is to think, move, survive, and help others in between the moments of TEOTWAWKI moments. The moments might be seconds or days apart. Sometimes in multiple rounds in one minute, one hour, or in one day.  Wither it’s rendering first aid to your buddy or strangers, lock and loading your weapon to defend your or others’ life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness, or sitting on watch protecting your home or country, it is what you know and how well you’re prepared which will determine how well you can make the change from being a prepper into being a doer and eventually a survivor.

At first the time in between the moments are a wonder. You may feel fear, your may forget everything you trained for, you may even be thinking about how festinating the events are unfolding around you. But, you must eventually move forward and stop watching and start analyzing and think. Think about concealment or shelter, think about where the enemy is, think about cover, think about where your gear is, or in other words think which is an action and by nature is not passive observation.

Next is to move. Move your body to a protective position, move your hands to grab equipment, move your fears out of the way, move your supplies to a safe location, move your vehicle into a safe lane, or move to your bug out location. Moving is the hardest part in a stressful situation and also requires correct actions on your part. Correct actions may be the plans you make while in the moment or in long term actions like moving to a safe location outside the collapse of a large urban area.  I believe moving is what places a person at the edge of a fine red line to cross so they can start ones personal  transformation into becoming a doer. What is the use of thinking only and not moving on what you know you ought to be doing in a TEOTWAWKI situation? Being a prepper is great only if you are truly serious about the day after preparations are not longer possible. I have heard from too many people I know brag about their own personal preparations and not have a clue what to do on the day after a very horrible moment in time. 

With time and correct action, thinking and moving will make you a survivor. The more a person survives the more experience they will gain and that is what is needed to become a veteran. Anyone can become a veteran and not really be in combat. You can become a veteran just by the experience of thinking and moving in a survival situations. First responders, firefighters, police officers all know this as they gain experience everyday by surviving their emergency moments by what they do with their time in between the moments on call and between calls.

Finally, you have survived and survived more than just once. You knew what to do with your time in between the moments of pure chaos and were lucky or fortunate enough to still be in one piece. What to do now is to help pick up the pieces and help others not fortunate enough to either know what to do with their time in between the moments because of lack of preparation or fell victim to the blunt force of the moment. The moment has passed and now you must act and be a doer of what is right by helping those less fortunate than you are. Rendering first aid to a buddy screaming for help, offering a helping hand to a neighbor buried under rubble, or giving food to the hungry are all right actions to help out others in times of their need. Being a prepper makes you prepared for the moment, but after the moment has passed for the time being, you need to become a doer to help build or rebuild your family, neighborhood, community, or country.  Sure your preparations will help you survive, but can you and your small like minded community last forever by yourselves and can you really afford to stay in prep mode and not be a positive force for promoting the principles of our founding fathers and Christ. Of course, you’re not to give to the point of endangering yourself and your family, but if you and your like minded community do not grow and encourage others to be persuaded take on your principles it’s only a matter of time before the others not like minded and bent on an ideology of forcefully “redistributing” from others weaker then you will soon grow strong enough to take what you have. 

So what is the time in between the moments? It’s what you make of it. Hopefully you will THINK, MOVE, SURVIVE, and HELP OTHERS. How well you can do these actions depends on how well you have made your preparations. The time spend in preparing is time well spent.  Grow in areas of weakness, assess your strengths, and spend time thinking about what you should be doing with your time in peace and in time of action. But there will be a time when you have to cross the line and stop being a prepper and start becoming a doer. Take courage and listen to your inner voice which will help guide you in a time a crises in a TEOTWAWKI situation. 

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