Over the past few weeks, my family has gone through a few very unpredictable events. It has made life a bit harder and quite a bit more crazy! (Hence, the hiatus from the blog world for a few weeks- thanks for hangin’ in there with me!)
It can seem near impossible to be prepared for a family emergency or small crisis. Being admitted to the hospital a few weeks ago, was quite the ordeal for my little family. But, being prepared with these few tips made life a whole lot easier! By being prepared you can take a lot of stress off yourself and off your children. Having stressed children can cause new problem behaviors, returning problem behaviors, tantrums, depression, anxiety etc. Prevent the majority of these feelings and issues with these simple tips. These tips are also great to use while getting ready for a new baby and planning for the big day.
Create an “Emergency Bag” for your child/children.
Have a bag prepared that you do NOT touch unless you are grabbing it to run out the door in the case of an emergency. Have spare items that you need on a daily basis for your child. Diapers, wipes, snacks, comfort items (binkie, blankie, stuffed animal, etc..), non perishable favorite food items, formula, bottles, medicines and any other items you know your child may need if you are away. You may want to consider having a separate bag for each child. Keep it somewhere in each child’s room where you know your child will not get into it and you can grab it quickly.
List of Medications and Doses.
Keep a list of medications and dose amounts in your Emergency Child bag. Include Tylenol and other items your child may need. If your child takes medication on a daily basis, try to keep some of this medicine in the bag (if possible.) Don’t forget to include how much, when and any other instructions you have on medicine. When in a panic this could be one thing you forget to grab. Having it ready and available in your bag will eliminate that stress while running out the door.
Instructions for each child.
Have a sheet with instructions ready in each child’s bag. Include bedtime routine with time, food ideas, and meal time routine, how you get your child to sleep, nap time schedule, school schedule and any extracurricular activities, any extra instructions that you find pertinent to your child’s daily routine. You may also want to include ways to comfort your child, favorite books, favorite snacks etc…(Update as frequently as needed)
List of Emergency Contacts that you can depend on.
Nothing is more stressful then having to find someone to watch your child when an emergency strikes (or when you are leaving to have a baby). Keep a list of emergency people that you can count on when/if something comes up. Try family members, church members, neighbors etc… Make sure the people on your list are aware that you are putting them on your list. (Make sure they are willing to be on your list!) Have the list ready and visible so if you or your spouse need it quickly you can grab it without having to find numbers, addresses, etc…
Spouse work contact list.
When I was admitted into the hospital a few weeks ago, I was uber stressed about my work knowing what was going on. My husband later told me that it stressed him out as well. It would have made it so much easier if he had a list with my bosses phone number and other things he may need. Now, we each have a list that we are ONLY allowed to use in case of emergency. If something happened and one of us wasn’t able to be at work, we could easily contact the other persons work place for them and explain the situation.
Have a “Parent Bag” ready.
Keep a small bag ready for you and your spouse in case you need to leave quickly. Include toiletry items, snacks, a spare phone charger, phone numbers you may need, a change of clothes (or at least underwear!!) medicines, cash for vending machines and any other items you may need or will make you more comfortable on those rainy emergency days.
Have a posted schedule of your week.
Keep a schedule or calendar visible for your family to see and keep it updated. By having a schedule available for your family, it will make it easier for you or your spouse to make it through the week. Have work days, play dates, activities, school functions etc…. listed on your calendar. If you or your spouse are in the hospital, away on an emergency etc… the other person will be able to carry on with the week without having to stress or without missing important events. Keep an open line of communication about events going on in your family so each member knows what to expect that week. By having small family meetings each week about upcoming events and activities your family can feel more prepared for the week and what to expect. This can make an emergency or crisis feel a little less stressful.
And last but not least…………
Don’t be afraid to accept help when offered! This can be one of the hardest things to do. BUT when help is offered be willing to take it! Make life a little easier on yourself and your children by being willing to accept help that comes your way. Don’t forget the Thank You notes to show how grateful you are!
Good Luck!! May you never have to use these tips!!!