Living a Present Life

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On Being Present

Since coming home with Ephraim a few months ago God has been teaching me a lot about being present. I know it’s kind of a buzz topic these days but I think it is so for a reason.

And in case anyone else is in this situation I thought I’d share two major ways God has been teaching me to be present in my own life lately.

#1 TO NOT LET MYSELF GET SO DISTRACTED ON SOCIAL MEDIA

Social media is not bad, I quite enjoy it, but it can often keep me from being present in moments with my family. There are a few things I’ve done and started to do to help with this.

First off, I’ve never been much of a real time Instagrammer, I’m the person that posts things a few hours after they happened (or a day, or even a few days . . . I’m really bad at the #widn hashtag because it’s never real time). If I take pictures when I’m out, or even at home with the kids I often just snap a bunch of photos and wait until I have a few minutes to myself (usually nap time) to go through my pictures and see if I got any keepers, edit them and then post them to Instagram.

The biggest problem for me is the fact that I’m a social media peruser. If I’m bored for even a second I’ll open Facebook and just scroll through the news feed, and even though there is usually nothing of value I can get distracted for a long time in it. So a few weeks ago I just deleted the Facebook app from my phone and it’s been huge. I still have the messenger app because otherwise I found myself going on FB just to check if I had messages which would completely defeat the purpose. Now I only go on FB if I’m using the computer, which if you can tell at all by the infrequency of my blog posts, really isn’t that much any more.

#2 TO HAVE DIFFERENT EXPECTATIONS FROM WHAT I GET DONE IN THE DAY

This has been the other big one for me, before I made this realization I would get frustrated with the kids a lot quicker because I wasn’t able to accomplish what I wanted to in the mornings. It wasn’t until I made the decision to spend the mornings focused on them that our days started to go better.

Now, just to note, part of this is because we adopted Ephraim as opposed to us having him from birth, he is still learning to entertain himself with toys and Raeca and Ephraim are still learning to play together, eventually I hope they will play together for longer stretches without a referee and I will actually be able to do stuff in the mornings (unless I decide to homeschool in the future, but that’s a whole other post in my head that I’ll have to write out one day).

This means that a lot of my “personal” stuff that I like to do (crafting, writing here, reading, listening to podcasts, send emails, oh yeah and posting photos to Instagram) needs to be done in the 1-2 hours of quiet time I get in the afternoons (and who am I kidding, 2 hours doesn’t happen very often). It means some of my goals and dreams have changed a little or been put on hold for a season, but that’s okay. Kids are only small for a season and I don’t want to have regrets down the road and feel like I wasted this short season.

What works for one person doesn’t always work for others, and what works for me now probably won’t work for me in a few months but since this is what is working now I thought I’d share it in case it helps others.

Now I’d love to hear from you,
what helps keep you present in your day?

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An Update from Last Week

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ephraim1

 he’s kind of obsessed with my glasses
(and looks adorable in them)

This last week was one that just didn’t play out like it was supposed to.

On Thursday morning Ephraim was supposed to go to be going to the eye specialist but instead he was waking up in isolation in the pediatric ward of the hospital.

Being a parent can be so scary some days and Wednesday was one of those days for me.

The day started out normal, Ephraim had a bit of a cough and a runny nose but nothing out of the ordinary for this time of the year. At 4:00 he started following me around and whining and I noticed he had a fever so I gave him some Tylenol and carried him around while I got supper ready.

The Tylenol brought his fever down for about an hour and around 6:00 his temperature was going up and Jared and I were in the do we bring him to the clinic discussion when he suddenly slumped over in Jared’s arms and I saw that he was starring off and completely unresponsive. I quickly grabbed him (because my mama heart needs to be holding my babies when they are sick) and tried to get him out of it. It wasn’t long before he started having a seizure in my arms. Just writing that brings a tightness to my chest.

While he was seizing Jared called 911. Before the first responders came the seizure stopped (it lasted for 2-3 minutes), he was unresponsive for a few more minutes and then he started crying and coughing and I couldn’t get him to calm down. It was in this time that the first responders arrived, five or six fire fighters and two medical people in plains clothes entered our home and surrounded our little guy. They gave him oxygen and got his vitals and he just kept crying and crying. They let me hold him and he kept crying.

Just as the ambulance arrived he finally settled down. Then I carried him out to the ambulance and watched the sun set through the ambulance doors as we drove to the hospital.

We got to the ER around 7:15 and before they could get him hooked up to the machines he had another seizure in my arms. Thankfully they could hook him up the oxygen right away and while the seizure probably lasted for about the same length of time as the first one he calmed down much quicker after.

ephraim2

The doctors told us that it’s fairly common for kids to have a fever induced seizure (how come I never knew this?!), but two within 24 hours is atypical. Because he had two seizures and so much of his background is unknown we spent the night in the hospital and they ran some extra tests. All of which thankfully ended up coming back normal.

He does have a higher chance of having more seizures in the future but we now know what to do and when to take him to the doctor and when he is okay to stay home. As scary as it was I now feel prepared and confident that I’ll know what to do in the future if he has another one.

Thanks to all who were praying for our little guy last week, we could feel your prayers!

ephraim3 hanging out in isolation
(because of Ephraim’s previous exposure to TB they put him in a tiny little
room in isolation. I liked that it had it’s own door and was much quieter than
rooms usually are in the pediatric ward.)

ephraim4 home again!

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