I read a blog today that contained a description and a definition of an “organic prepper”. After some basic information about the “prepper movement” in response to “It took nearly 3 weeks to restore electrical power and many still don’t have safe tap water to drink and cook with after Hurricane Sandy assaulted the east coast”, they make the statement “Smart people are beginning to recognize that you can only rely on yourself”.
Here’s a quote from the article in The Daily Sheeple that caught my attention because it described much of what I do to ensure, and take responsibility for, my personal health.
“Personally I’ve made choices for the health of my family that put us outside the “norm”. We don’t eat packaged foods. We spend more money to source meats that are farmed without steroids and antibiotics. Our dairy products are 100% organic. We grow much of our own produce, purchase some from local farmers and buy the other from the small organic section in our grocery store. We avoid anything containing corn, corn syrup, or cornstarch because it’s most likely made with GMO corn that has been inundated with BT pesticide. We drink filtered well water and don’t rely on municipal resources.” That simple statement duplicates many of my own food thoughts and choices.
While I wouldn’t call myself an “organic prepper”, I would call myself a back-to-basics kind of girl. I’ve invested many years in studying basic nutrition, healthy eating, healthy lifestyle, and the effects of emotional status on physical health in both the short and long-run. A few years back I got to the point where I had so much information – conflicting information – I could no longer easily decide what to purchase, cook, and consume. I was truly distressed. Emotionally, I had worked myself into a state of helplessness, confusion and near panic. Here I was educated beyond belief, and I couldn’t make a simple decision about what was most healthy for me. Who was I supposed to listen too? Which “authority” was “right”?
At that point I brought my understanding of how to create peace in my life to the forefront. I practiced some basic breathing techniques, relaxation exercises and simple meditation. I relaxed, thought of how I wanted my life to play out – and I had a revelation. I realized that to know and understand what I needed for my personal health I truly could only rely on myself. We are all individuals. There is no one who knows about me and my needs than ME. There is no one diet that is perfect for everyone. There is no lifestyle that is perfect for everyone. That revelation prompted me to begin to make gradual lifestyle changes. Each choice led me farther down another wonderful road of self-discovery. I learned how much I enjoy creating simple things in my life. All I did was listen to my inner guidance for what is “right” for me.
Gradually, over about the last seven years, I have transformed my diet and lifestyle to be one where I prepare all meals from scratch, from basic ingredients. I have a vegetable garden and have joined a CSA for even more seasonal fresh vegetables. I purchase wheat berries in 50 pound bags to grind into flour. I make my own butter from raw milk cream. I make my own cheese, also from raw milk. Last weekend I had the great joy of rendering 5lbs of pork “leaf lard” into ½ gallon of creamy cooking lard. The weekend the plan is to mix the lard with the butter using an original “shortening” recipe from 1887, grind the wheat berries, and make those really flaky pie crusts I remember from childhood.
This may seem extreme to many people (hence the “organic prepper” idea). Others may be interested in gradually moving in a similar – but uniquely different way. We are all individuals and are the ultimate “authority” for what our life should look like. My current lifestyle is one of joy, discovery, and satisfaction. I love the feeling of personal power I receive from knowing that, with a few basic food items near their original state of creation, I can create nourishing meals for myself and for my loved ones. I love it when I get curious about how some “food” sold in the grocery store was made before becoming a factory-created food substitute. Each and every time I have an “ah ha, so that’s how it’s made” moment when I find the answer in some old cookbook. (I have several cookbooks published prior to 1955.) An additional bonus is that I have yet to find anything purchased pre-packaged in a grocery store that can compare with any meal I have prepared with fresh ingredients from scratch.
Before I close I also want to add a short list of other intangible benefits received in choosing to personalize my lifestyle.
- I realize that my life is not created in one choice but is a series of many choices
- I am secure in my ability to care for my family
- I have local farmer friends and neighbors
- Friends, neighbors and I contribute positively to each others’ lives
- I feel good about myself and who I am
- There is no doubt in my mind that I am able to create personal health
It is my fervent hope that I may have inspired you in some way to expand and explore your personal needs, desires, and creative spirit. Please share. And Thank You for joining me at Peacetutor Health Coaching.