Today it’s time we have an honest talk about the reality of being a prepper. Most of us are not bi-polar and we’re not OCD types either. Yet it is a sad bit of reality that we all often will face discouragement and fatigue. Maybe we’re working full time and the economy is fighting us at every step and turn we take. Or perhaps even with all the logical, respectfully delivered, and fact filled talks you try, family and friends are not on board. Maybe it’s the weather obstacles getting to you – or has a predator managed to decimate your livestock? I’m sure each of you has had to come to grips with some issue that gets you to the breaking point sooner or later. It happens to the best of us. We face some emotional turmoil that causes us to stop all our efforts and feels as if we are hitting rock bottom.
I am right there along with all of you It seems the economy takes a bigger and bigger bite of my paycheck every month while the paycheck stays at the same dismal decimal point in the zeros. Just when it looks like the perfect time to plant, after setting out all the seeds, along come monsoon rains that wash them all away. The weeds thrive and the vegetables have gone away to who knows where. So back it is to redoing the soil pulling too many weeds to think about before more seeds can be sown. Last year it was a raccoon that killed all of our flock – this year we battled a possum. This time blessedly the dog won. The baby rabbits? They fell prey to the monsoon too and we need to wait out another breeding cycle to see if our mama rabbit will be successful again. A friend had his entire menagerie destroyed – fish, rabbits, guinea fowl, chickens all killed by a loose monster sized dog that animal control finally caught albeit too late to help him.
Then of course, the issue of health and age are not too easily ignored either. I am no longer twenty something. My health is not bad for someone my age, but then it is right on par with someone my age. That means my stamina and energy levels are not what they used to be. Pacing activities has to be a reality – and when the same task has to be repeated thanks to weather, the economy, or predators, it is discouraging.
Trying to grocery shop and put a few extra pounds of beans or rice away in long term storage is frustrating when the economy and the rising food costs hamper the regular shopping trips in spite of the media telling me food costs and inflation are not real problems – that’s a conservative media lie don’t you know? So what are we supposed to do? Is it worth even trying to prep? Are we buying into a lie or if we listen closely enough, so we catch those short little blips from FEMA and others that have been quietly upping the numbers for what they say folks should put up “just in case”? Is it all because we hit a certain age, some magical number, that suddenly we realize we should be worrying about being prepared, about surviving? Exactly what we hope to survive is not even part of this malaise. Worrying about our younger generations not preparing is another cog in our wheel to add to the heavy feeling we each deal with.
So it is that each of us attempts to make that fateful decision. Do we pull ourselves up out of our chair? Do we acknowledge that the pity party is not helping us feel better? How do we deal with this discouragement? Or do we let it all take us so far down that we refuse to get up again?
This is where the other parts of being a prepper come in. We need to prepare mentally and spiritually as well as physically. Yes, go ahead and take a few days off and regroup. Then get up and be motivated once more to begin again. How one does this is different for each of us. Prayer and meditation are usually the first step for most of us. For me quiet reflection and time in The Word also help. Soothing music lends a relaxing background that I can change to more upbeat tempos to help re-energize myself.
Another fail proof method for me is to sit out back – maybe float in the pool a bit , or enjoy that first seasonal salad straight from the garden– and I watch the dog chase lizards and the chickens kick up dust in search of their favorite munchies. Each time I come to the backdoor all of those sweet gals run to the corner to await me – it never enters their minds that I had no intention of going out to visit them. They know I can’t resist their silly antics and soon enough in spite of all the discouragements and frustrations, a small smile returns. I wouldn’t trade any of these moments no matter how challenging.