schitzophrenic life : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) Preparation Forum : One Thread

Been a lurker, now taking the leap. Here's my question: How have you been able to emotionally reconcile your mental and physical Y2K preps and continue with your day-to-day life? I am finding a growing sense of "derealization" in my daily life. I'll be at the store and be astounded by the abundance on the shelves. I'll look into the faces of the people who I deal with at work and think "you don't have a chance". Continuing to pretend that everything will just go on like this forever when I feel that even if it is just a moderate BITR nothing will ever be the same. What have you done to fix this dichotomy in your lives? Thanks

-- cath (, September 03, 1999


Someone please answer this question because I desperatly need to know the answer.

-- Carol (, September 03, 1999.

Cath and Carol,

I sometimes feel the same way. It's like watching someone heading blindly for a cliff. I have sympathy for these DGIs, but I have to remind myself that it is their choice not to "get it". Virtually everyone has heard of Y2K and it's possible consequences. Soom choose to heed the warnings, others don't. Some make fun of those who do take it seriously, others reconsider. Like most things in life, it is a personal choice.

I chose to prepare. I liken it to an insurance policy on which I can get most of my investment back if nothing happens. I don't look at people without life or health insurance and worry about what would happen to their family or them if they should die or have serious medical problems. It's their choice to take out insurance or not. It's none of my business. I may feel sorry for them later, but they had their chance, the same as I had mine.

I don't know if that helps any, but experience is a hard teacher. If they survive, maybe they will have learned their lesson.

-- Gerald R. Cox (, September 03, 1999.

Yes, that's the way it goes. I just want o discuss this with everyone--people in the elevator, whoever. MNostly, I have to keep my mouth shut. It's not easy.

-- Mara Wayne (, September 03, 1999.

Cath, I deal with it much more on an even keel now than I did a year ago. Last Sept. I was trying to reach my neighbors,friends, relatives and church family. I was on line every night trying to get an understanding of what I needed to do and busy the rest of the time trying to do it. I often felt like I was losing my mind and that everyone else was normal.

As I've worked through it, I've reached this point: I know God spoke to me about terrible times ahead and I was told to warn others and get prepared myself. I've done that to the best of my ability. I don't put my faith in the *stuff* I've put aside; it could all be taken from me. I put my faith in the one who told me he desires "obedience rather than sacrifice". I've done what he said; the ball is in his court if something happens to my stuff. However, I still look at the faces everywhere I go and I feel that, as you said "They don't have a chance" and it's not in my power to change that.

-- Sylvia (, September 03, 1999.

I know exactly what you mean! However, as a Bible-believing Christian, this situation is actually helping me to resist being squeezed into the worldly mold. One is forced to recognize what is really important in the eternal scheme of things: one's faith in Christ, true friends, family, simple living, contentment and peace-no matter what the circumstance, seeing the forest for the trees, and admitting to helplessness and to one's utter dependence on and hope in God's Master Plan (which is definitely Y2K compliant).


-- Jeremiah Jetson (laterthan@uthink.y2k), September 03, 1999.

I am not living my normal day-to-day this year. Since I became concerned I have moved back to the USA. Years of just visiting home once a year and now living on the family farm again. Working long hours on a job I hate, only because I believe a depression is coming and the chance to make this kind of money might not come my way again.

1999 has been/is/will be unreal and unpleasant for me. My best "fix" is watching the days fly by and looking forward to 2000 as an improvement in my life whether it is BITR or SHTF. I'm getting ready for either.

I suggest getting rid of the dichotomy by getting rid of your normal day-to-day life; as I did. Throw yourself into getting ready for serious problems, regardless of whether you think chances for them are 99% or 1%.

-- Steve (, September 03, 1999.

I was thinking about this while I was traveling this week. Now that our preps are pretty far along, I find that I feel less like I am living 2 lives. Since we will never be unprepared again, it has become "normal" to think in terms of preparations. We are also moving forward with some things as if next year will be like this year - in other words like Y2k is a bump in the road.

There are still days that I feel panic and terror, but they have gotten less as I became more prepared.

-- Beckie (, September 03, 1999.

Cath, great post. You described perfectly what many of us are in two worlds at once. For myself, I have tried to live with the dichotomy, uncomfortable as it is. I can't find any way to avoid it, but it is bearable...mostly because I remind myself there are others going through the same thing - and they're on this board where I can touch base with them. Hang in there. So glad you posted.

-- Jill D. (, September 03, 1999.

I suspect that many, if not most, of us have similar feelings.

Having a plan to get out of debt is an immense help to us. If necessary, we can get by on a relatively small income. As we have made some progress on the preps as well, we feel that it is possible to relax a bit more and not be so focused in our purchasing.

Actually, what seems like an impossible task becomes relatively simple when we approach it incrementally, doing a little bit each time we went shopping, and especially taking advantage of sale items. Once the very basic items are in place (some rice, beans, wheat, oats) adding the stuff to make it more tasty is pretty simple.

This weekend we will try some home-ground flour (complete with weevils - or at least weevil parts). My apologies to the squeemish. I don't like to think about eating 'em either, but we just have to get past it. It's a fact of life.

Another step towards simplifying our lives. Simplification will help solve that dichotomy. (I think that "schizophrenic" is an inaccurate word, since it implies that we are out of touch with reality. I don't think that is the case, although I might *hope* so.)

Don't give up. Keep on keepin' on. This too, shall pass.

Just passin' through,


-- gene (, September 03, 1999.


As the hero in the movie "Die Hard" said: "Welcome to the party ,pal!"

-- nitesky voodoo (, September 03, 1999.

"I resemble that remark" and have for some time - sometimes i find myself amazed at how everyone around me is so "business as usual"......I just dont get it how they "dont get it".....I was feeling quite overwhelmed this last week and made the decsion to take a week off and revert to as much normalicy as possible - I think it has been good to take a brief time out. I really appreciate your post and so many of the responses as well - I plan to continue praying for God's will in my life and take it "One day at a time" - Like someone above said, "this too shall pass".............Keepin it simple,

-- New Kid on the Block (, September 04, 1999.

I see corpses everywhere.

-- zoobie (, September 04, 1999.

Great post cath!

Personally,I associate my prep mode to the infamous "Force" as in the Star Wars films. When I'm down and out or standing in line at Wally-World with a load of prep stuff,I can feel the "Force" urging me to continue my preps. As I casually scan the other patrons in line,I try my best to project the "Force" to others. But,alas it doesn't seem to work.

But,seriously,it does get very hard at times living a dual life. Ask yourself this when it starts getting to you,do I want to survive? How much do I love my family,children?

Hang in there and keep on preparing!

-- Ex-Marine (Digging, September 04, 1999.

Cath and Carol

If you knew someone who was dying of cancer, what would you do? If he wanted to talk to you about his new car, you would listen and admire it, wouldn't you? You would maybe have more patience with him? Because he's dying, and you know it.

I spent all of last year trying to get everyone to listen and prepare. I don't bother to do that now. I see everyone around me as possibly being dead next year. I treat them like they all have cancer...listen to them, admire their cars, their babies, their houses...encourage their dreams of going back to school...whatever. Just being kinder helps a great deal. We should all be kinder anyway.

-- helen (, September 04, 1999.

Like many others on the Forum,I too went round last year & the early part of this trying to convince folks that things could get nasty.I too gave up when faced with derision & veiled name calling.But the funny thing is that those same people are now saying maybe things aren't what they seem.Yes,they are buying extra food each week but still cannot understand the true scale of the problem.

I go shopping & see the shelves full of food & petrol at the pumps & people shopping for the latest CD and I just feel really sad but envious at the same time.They are still living "normal lives".They haven't gone through the last year on a roller coaster.

But what can you do ?????????.Precious little.So I don't think too hard & try to keep focused.After all we all had a choice to prepare or not.

-- Chris (, September 04, 1999.

I see and hear people talking about their Beanie Baby collections and how they intend to acquire more of that useless,exensive junk or what the next generation of Barbie doll will be like and I have to fight the urge to shake them. I suppose if the Beanie Babies are filled with real beans they could be eaten.

-- Lumber Jack (, September 04, 1999.

Sometimes I'll be at the grocery store and I'll see something on sale that would be a great food storage item -- for instance Vigo Rice & Bean mixes on sale (yum). I'll stand there contemplating how many I should buy, wondering how many I can afford -- and then I imagine what my future self in 2000 would say, if I could look back on myself at that moment in time. I imagine myself in six months from now, with food shortages everywhere, high prices, limits on food purchases -- and that gives me the strength to go ahead and load up my cart now, while I can. Its like I have to disconnect from my present world and project myself ahead in time in order to gain the proper prospective on whether I should empty the shelf full of rice & beans into my cart. This type of "future visualization" usually helps.

If there are food shortages and rationing, we won't be able to just waltz into the grocery store and buy up all the rice on sale. We can do it now and its okay. But if the government starts rationing food, that sort of power buying will be over with. So I figure I should do it now, while everything on the surface is still calm, because any day the "trigger effect" could happen and leisurely stockpiling could be a thing of the past.

I also look at the people who come into my workplace and I wonder how many will survive. At least I know that my husband and I will survive, on the food I have bought. Often I have bought prep items even though it meant paying our bills late. This hasn't done much for our credit rating. But what good is a perfect credit rating if you don't have food, heat, or water in the house? We bought a kerosene heater, lots of food, water barrels, and we're going to buy a water filter this weekend. Once that purchase is made, I can relax a little. Maybe.

-- waiting (waitingforthe@x2.fall), September 04, 1999.

I was just thinking about this yesterday. I feel really out-of-touch with current reality too sometimes. It's spooky to be the only one in an area preparing. When you're literally surrounded by dgi's, it's frightening.

I try to remember that, deep inside, I trust myself. I don't know what's RIGHT and what's WRONG. I can only go with what SEEMS like the best decision. I remind myself that, as a young adult, I have a loooong time (maybe) to catch up with what I've given up this past year in the name of preparations. So I didn't buy the stereo I wanted. I can get it later--if there's still stereos to buy or money to buy them with. Or, perhaps I will have changed fundamentally so that I don't care about things like stereos anymore. I hope that is the case. We're surrounded by so much forced materialism, "must-have" mentality and effing Pokemon that it's hard to figure out what counts.

Stand strong, sister, you know what you think and believe. Who cares about everyone else? It's only for a few more months that we have to wonder. Then we might wish we were still wondering! Don't let others' lack of self-preservation kick you in the butt. My husband and I are subjected to a general rolling of the eyes by everyone that knows us. My parents are STILL trying to get me to enroll in college next spring! When in doubt, imagine living where you live now with no heat, no light, and no food. Imagine the apartment buildings burning down because people thought they could burn things in a barrel in their living rooms for heat. Imagine going to the toilet...and then imagine having no toilet and being unable to dig a pit cuz it's too cold outside. Imagine if EVERYONE you know is going to the bathroom in the street. Keep those images--death, horror, terror, disillusionment at the collapse of our trusted systems--in your mind. You can get rid of them later if you don't need them anymore. Personally, I see the world a whole different way now.

-- Zoobiette (, September 04, 1999.

Thank you to everyone who posted a response. As always, it's helpful to see that others have similar experiences and thoughts to my own. We'll just keep on going and wait to see if and when the axe will fall. One thing is certain, I'm not so quick to take things for granted--be it a quiet evening at home watching "60 minutes" or going out for sushi. I think that's a good thing that has come out of this whole experience regardless of what happens 1/1/00.

-- cath (, September 04, 1999.

Lumber Jack: I already checked with a flea market vendor. Beanie Babies are filled with little plastic pellets. Yuck.

-- Pearlie Sweetcake (, September 04, 1999.

From: Y2K, ` la Carte by Dancr near Monterey, California

I disagree about others having had a fair opportunity to recognize the danger that they are in. The whole idea that the entire civilized world could be brought to its knees by a trivial computer programming error is simply rediculous on its face. Most of my family has pretty much commanded me to stop talking about Y2K.

I don't know if it will do any good, but I've ordered for my neighbors several hundred copies of the Red Cross Y2K Flyer, and a similar one from the Office of Emergency Management. I also got them the Utne Reader book, which you can review online. These, I am mailing anonymously, after some editing, such as the words "or more" added after each recommended amount.

I take time out to come here to vent because I understand that keeping silent about important truths can be very corrosive to mental health.

-- Dancr (addy.available@my.webpage), September 04, 1999.

Yep- been there, done that. You just deal with it and go on I guess. won't last forever- what will happen will happen-

it's interesting trying to plan for next year work-wise here on the farm. I'll be taking notes on which varieties i want to plant, not plant, more of, less of, etc- and then I think- oh but who knows what will be by then?? Even a big market I do in November- I've planned for it to be like last years- but who knows?? The manure may have hit the fan by then.....I've been trying to cover the bases both ways- making sure to have enough plastics, etc for next year- and seed for basics- but also other stuff as well. Will I spend space growing lots of eggplant and hot peppers next year? Or will I be concentrating on grains, soybeans, winter squash, potatos and the like? Definitely a schizophrenic existence.

the same with watching people make their plans for whatever- who knows?? But- we don't have long to wait to see what comes down.....

-- farmer (, September 04, 1999.

reply to waiting:

I think your reasoning is excellent about thinking of the future. I have often wondered if I will be kicking myself for not buying more when I had the chance so I spend that extra dollar.

-- Carol (, September 04, 1999.

This is a question I have been facing for over a year.

A recent family vacation to Montana did not help. Out in the open spaces, were the population density is low, and frontier towns still exist, I could not believe that the loss of computers would be a big problem. Most people at the stores use checks (not plastic), they have full service gas at "pump it yourself" prices. The population is low and there appears to be lots of stuff at all of the stores.

Then it was back to the Big City, San Jose, and if the system breaks down, there are just too many people and not enough stuff to feed, cloth, take care of them if the supply lines shut down. This is not good.

I have made some preps, but what if I am forced out of my home by manditory evac? I wish I could get out of the city but it is not in the cards. For those of you that did get out, say a prayer for those of us who must stay in the suburbs, maybe it will be ok away from the high density housing, or up on the peninsula near SF.

But as I am prepared for an 8, I am also open to a 2. Every day I say a little prayer that it really will be a BITR.

Help us all, help us through these times ahead....

-- helium (, September 05, 1999.

I had similar feelings last year, a brief but intensely painful illness caused me to gain a bit more perpective.

Now I have a funny dichotomy going on a times internally. A dear friend who came of age in Dresden in the war years recently passed away. One thing that I bought for preps is a giant bottle of the Colonge no. 4711 that she used to give me. {I had never seen it before in a store, and a giant bottle with a special sale price jumped out a me from our local emporium months ago}. Maybe it will be my final bottle {should last me for years}, but I thought it would remind me other things, extravagances, civilization carrying on through challenges.

-- flora (***@__._), September 05, 1999.

Dear Carol and Cath, What a sense of ease filled me as I read both your posts. I've been feeling the same way for months now. I view everything in my life through "y2k colored" glasses. I was at Walmart today and found myself grazing down the store contemplating all the useless crap. I constantly looked shoppers and what was in their carts. Amazing. When I made the decision to prepare for y2k and talked about it to my friends and coworkers,I quickly realized that there was going to be a serious disconnect there. Luckily I have neighbors and some friends who have "gotten it" about the time I did and it helps to talk about it. This board helps as well. It feels like I have 2 lives. I go to work and see all the plastics, (chemical industry), all the drugs and medications,(the medical industry) all the drapes,gowns,syringes-I'm an OR nurse-(manufactured in Sri Lanka,Mexico,China)and think,"Oh yeah, we'll be just fine....yup,no problem here". Then I come home and take the dog for a walk and sometime that night I'll log on to the net just to know that all the soda bottles I refill, all the beans and rice I've stored away , all the lamp oil,propane cannisters, and matches that now reside in the guest room are good,safe,commendable insurance. People at work still tease me about the "latest" thing on y2k on the mainstream media and how everything is fine. I smile and nod and say, "Pay attention to everything you hear." I've taken to adding that the SEC is 99% compliant and watch them smile. I then add that the SEC handles conservatively 1 trillion transactions in one day. I pause,and smile my twisted evil smile and say,"Hmmm so, 1%of 1 trillion is 10 billion,soooooo I guess the SEC is content with a daily failure rate of 10 billion. Wonder how long the stock market will survive on that kind of efficiency?". I know, I know, it's a petty thing to indulge in but I'm so sick and tired of the hot air balloon of "everything's fine, we're ok here, or oh,well(smile,shrug)..." that I need to poke my needle into something,anything... Thank you for listening and I'll pause to wipe the spit off my face.... Jan

-- Jan Cunningham (, September 06, 1999.

PhD theses could (hopefully will) be written on this topic. The emotions and thoughts that seem to be shared by virtually all GIs is haunting. It tells us something deep about how we deal with stress, unknown, etc. I have experienced all of the above. A big chunk of who I was a year ago is currently on the back burner.

-- Dave (, September 07, 1999.

My whole life has been so strange that Y2K sorta fits right in.

-- Forrest Covington (, September 08, 1999.

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