As we become rooted completely in the digital age, we have become incredibly reliant on technology. Whether it is our smartphone, tablet or computer, the electricity to run, well, everything, or gas to fuel vehicles (or generators to keep getting electricity when the grid fails), we rely heavily on outside sources to maintain our day to day existence.
We’ve become so accustomed to there being a quick and simple solution for so many things that we expect it for everything. And, to a certain level, it’s understandable why this outlook has developed. For most of us, if we find ourselves in an emergency situation that occurs from a disaster we expect aid to come from one or more of these sources:
- The City Government we live in or near.
- The State Government we live in.
- The National Guard and Reserves.
- The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
- The U.S. Government in general.
But what happens if any or all of those organizations are out of reach or otherwise not available? Just in the last year, our current president claimed that budget cuts should be made to FEMA and other emergency organizations. Even if those cuts are to specific programs and not the whole organization, who can really say for sure that the money will never be needed.
Fun Fact: Did you know that FEMA is an agency of the U.S. Department of Homeland Defense? Yes, it is.
With political climates regularly changing and programs regularly being put on the chopping block, it really is a good idea to be as self-sufficient as possible.
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So, What Did Our Predecessors Do?
One thing that is especially important to remember, all of the technology we rely on is practically brand new when we look at it in comparison to the rest of human history. When I think about how quickly all of our modern conveniences came into being, I remind myself of Laura Ingalls Wilder. Growing up I loved her book, and even now I enjoy rereading them. She did an amazing job documenting how people lived and worked off the land. Charles Ingalls provided for his family almost entirely through hard work and knowledge of his surroundings.
In the 90 years of her life (1867-1957) Laura Ingalls Wilder saw some amazing advances in technology. She chose to stay on her farm until the end, even after her husband passes away.
She was raised to provide for herself and her family by using what her environment offered. The American Pioneers knew how to provide for themselves and their neighbors, no matter what was thrown at them.
In today’s unstable natural and political climate, it would be appropriate for us to learn from and implement many of the activities that were normal to everyday life only just a century or so ago. As we’ve already seen on a smaller scale, when times of crisis occur, and people begin to panic, our own behavior can be even more destructive than the disaster we’re facing.
Being prepared at all times is the best way to protect yourself and your family during an emergency. Even the simplest of measures, like keeping spare batteries in stock and a backup supply of water can make all the difference.
If you have the ability, consider growing your own food stores. Fruits and vegetables can be preserved and kept. Other items like sugar and coffee can be bought on sale in larger quantities and stored for extended periods of time. All without the use of electricity or the internet.
Need inspiration? Just close your eyes and think, what would Charles Ingalls do?