During our live DWTS show last night, we heard the Oklahoma news as it was unfolding. It made us sad and made us scared for our own families while we were at work.
Later that night, watching the news as many mothers were reunited with their kids and many were not, it scared me to think of how my work could separate my family and me.
What would I do if a natural disaster struck and I couldn’t get to my children? I started thinking about our safety plan (or lack thereof…).
Having a safety plan in place is so important for families and a comfort for everyone. Do you have a friend to call on that lives close if you can’t get to your children? Does your school have an emergency contact if they can’t reach you? What is the plan if you are separated?
It’s not just about natural disasters, as parents we also need to think about predators and home invasions. I took a self-defense course and they talked about how frequently moms are targeted because we are so distracted with our children. I learned that we have to be more aware than the next person, we have to think ahead, and we HAVE to be prepared.
How many times are you not looking around you because you are searching for your keys, or totally lost in your kid’s actions? I hate to even write this blog, but it’s so important and these are some simple tips that could make a BIG difference. Here are some self defense tips for moms:
1. Have your keys in hand before you leave any building.
2. Park as close as possible to where you are going and always choose a well-lit area.
3. After buckling in your child, lock the door before you walk around the car to get in.
4. Have a phone that connects to the wall jack that will work even when the electricity goes out.
5. Don’t roll down your window for anyone!
6. YELL if you are in danger!
7. Have flashlight (with batteries in them!) in every room.
8. Have spare candles on hand in case you have no light.
9. Know what to do if someone enters your house. Don’t go looking for them, stay put and call the police. Lock as many doors as possible in the room you are located in.
10. Lights around your house are a GREAT deterrence, so is a barking dog!
Code words are also a GREAT idea for working parents who need caretakers to help run their brood. My children would NEVER go with anyone unless my husband or I discussed it with them first, wrote them a note or called them ahead of time – they know to NEVER go with anyone, even a best friend, unless that person knows our private family code word. It’s a safety word for them to be sure that Mom or Dad have made necessary arrangements without being able to tell them. It’s a great system for my family and way to protect them from a smart predator who may be manipulating them into danger.
We did an emergency evacuation in our Malibu home a few years ago during the terrible Malibu fires. The story is not appropriate at this time; it pales in comparison to what is going on in the world. But, I’ll tell you that I had 10 minutes to get four kids and three dogs safely out of my burning neighborhood. I learned what to do because of that experience. I learned a lot, but the most important lesson was that I was NOT as prepared as I could have been and I should have had a safety plan in place.
No one wants to think about negative, scary situations, but being prepared may give you a better shot at surviving them. I wanted to share some safety tips and I would love to hear any of yours, I am sure we can help each other a lot.
Here are a few good links…