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Survival Girl’s Series: Prepping the Kids




How well are we prepping our kids for the impending disaster?


My husband woke up one morning and shared with me a disturbing dream he’d had that night. You see we have lots of pets in our home, including two cats and 6 hamsters. Now I am not the crazy cat lady down the street, but we love animals and feel like they enrich our family life. Due to an unfortunate mistake on the part of the pet store, we ended up with a boy and girl hamster instead of two girls like we thought we had. Which naturally led to a cage full of baby hamsters. Now I know what you’re thinking, who in there right mind would try to keep hamsters and cats in the same house together? Disaster waiting to happen right? Well I guess we figured if we kept them away from each other, all would be well. Besides, it’s not like my cats are viscous killers or anything, the worst they might do is chase them around the house and scare them a little bit.

Well here it was, 5 months after we brought the hamsters home for my daughter on Christmas and no significant blood shed had taken place. But on this particular day my husband had a dream, or more appropriately a premonition. In the dream, he saw the cats trying to get to the hamsters and the hamsters were all in a frenzy, trying to get out of the cage. Being a supersticious person myself, and realizing how the power of the subconscious mind often shows itself to us through our dreams – I took this revelation very seriously. We had always kept the hamsters locked away securely in my daughters bedroom, away from the curious eyes of our kitties. But I had decided to air on the side of caution and move them into a closet where I knew they would be safe.

The day went on without a hitch. The hamsters were secure in their little home in the closet and thankfully, my husband’s dream seemed to be just that – a dream.  So the next morning we moved the hamsters back into their usual spot on my daughters dresser and went about our day. The day went by and again – no distress between our arch enemy room mates.

The next morning we woke up just like any other day and plopped down in the living room to watch some t.v. My daughter brought some toys out and had a little ball she was playing with. The ball had rolled under the couch and she had asked my husband to lift the couch up for her so she could get it out.

All of the sudden she let out the most shrill, terrorizing scream you’ve ever heard in your life. “Mom!” she cried, “there is a baby hamster under the couch and his body is torn in half!” Unbenounced to us, there was a hamster under the couch bloody and in shock. It was still moving but it had been torn up pretty bad. The middle section of his body had been torn and he was bleeding profusely. Upon further inspection, we discovered the poor little guy was hurt beyond repair, and we had to put him out of his misery.

My poor little girl was completely beside herself with grief over what she had just witnessed. I held her in my arms as she cried and tried to comfort her. I explained that this was the circle of life and that sometimes these things will happen. That this probably wouldn’t be the only time she would see something so terrible. And it was best to prepare herself for it mentally by knowing that this was just the way things were.

This experience really got me thinking about the future. How in the world would my daughter be able to handle the atrocities that surely await us when TSHTF if she was so upset by this little hamster?

How could I help her to be mentally prepared for what lies ahead?

Being a parent is hard work!

Being a “Prepper” and a parent is an even harder balance to strike. You know that there’s a storm brewin’ and you do your best to prepare your family for what’s coming. But how do you handle that with your kids? What do you say?

It’s your job to provide safety and security for your children and the last thing you want to tell them is that the safe and happy world they have come to know might not exist one day. That everything they have come to depend on might be snatched right out from underneath them in a moment’s notice and there isn’t a darn thing you, or anyone else can do about it.

It’s a very frightening prospect for us as adults to face, much less our innocent young children who typically see the world through rose-colored glasses. But I realized that by not sharing this knowledge with my children I might actually be setting them up for more trauma then they would experience otherwise.

How do we prepare our children for what’s coming without scaring them senseless? I wanted to share this knowledge with my daughter without pulling the proverbial rug out from underneath her.

After scouring the internet for hours, I discovered this great learning program from the Red Cross called “Masters of Disaster“. It has a very thorough, interactive guide to follow as you educate your children on this important topic.

***This article was contributed by Chrystle Poss a.k.a. “Survival Girl”, Owner of this Survival Blog and devoted Prepper. She has been writing articles on survival and emergency preparedness since 2006. You can find her work on various websites and publications.***