Private Preparations for Possible Pandemic

When the kids age, they at least pay a bit of attention to the news.  And unfortunately, that news today is all about a possible pandemic of the swine flu.  And naturally, they’ll ask the magic question are we gonna die?

How can I handle this?

My first response to these questions is no, we’re not going to die.  And they usually then go outside to shoot some hoops or pester another sibling. 

My second response is to then take a deep breath and start a mental review of what we might need in the event that things do get ugly.  But how do I define "ugly"?  My assumption is that things will not follow the Mad Max/Road Warrior scenario, so I’m not going to spend my time stocking up on Pez Dispensers for use as trading goods.  I assume that in the worst case, schools might be closed and public will slow to a crawl for awhile.

So what do I plan to keep on hand?  Remember that the idea is not to have to leave the house while one or more of the kids is sick.

  • Several bottles of disinfectant cleaner, fully stocked, since the germ-control activities will rise significantly.
  • Several bottles of antibacterial hand cleaner, enough for each sink plus a spare.
  • Disinfectant wipes for wiping down all common hand surfaces – think remotes and handles.
  • Some rubber/latex gloves in the event that I have to clean up vomit or other bodily messes.
  • Several bottles of carbonated non-colas – Sprite, Ginger Ale – for queasy stomachs as well as several bottles of apple juice to mix with it.
  • Some Pedialyte for the smaller child to help the body recoup.
  • Some cans of mild/bland soup for recovering stomachs.
  • Adequate supply of paper towels and toilet paper since the usage will probably rise.
  • Adequate supply of child’s ibuprofen and acetaminophen to help with any fever control.

And if I have to go to the store, I’ll handle it one of two ways.  First, I’ll either go at night so that the kids aren’t alarmed or else I’ll take the eldest with me and work these items into a larger list.  If I take Eldest, we’ll have some conversations on preparation for emergencies.

And then I’ll fall back on the default you’re going to be alright.

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