That time my son almost drown because I was on Instagram. [The Gift of Presence]

The gift of presence - the story of how a mom didn't notice her son drowning because she was on Instagram.

The gift of presence. Of being, not just in the same room, but fully PRESENT with your kids, family, whomever you are with. It's officially summer, and many of you know that each year I always feel compelled to share my story. The horrifying, embarrassing, life-altering story of the time my child almost drowned in the pool while I was distracted on Instagram. Each year, after I post this, I receive an outpouring of grateful comments from parents who appreciate the reminder to be present in the moment. There are also comments from people thinking I'm using this as a ploy to get more page views. Rest assured, my motive here has nothing to do with that. I don't even take a paycheck from this blog, remember? My intention, and hope, is that you will share this story with your family, friends, and anyone with children. Please, I beg you. Not because it helps my blog stats (trust me, that's the last thing on my mind with this), but because even still, years later, I break out in the occasional cold sweat when I watch my son swimming under water. I still have dreams of pulling him out of the water with his lips blue and teeth grinding, and still look at him with a pang in my heart, imagining what life would be like without him and thinking about how close we came to losing him. If my story can help even one parent avoid any of this, my job is done.

Enjoy your summer, and your time with your children — and leave your phone at home. Or in the boat. Inside the car. Anywhere but in your hand. If you choose to take pictures (we all do!), edit them, and post on IG, FB, once your sweet kids are safely tucked in, and snoozing in bed.

May we all remember to be present with our families this summer and enjoy every moment we have with the ones we love…but not from behind a screen.

(read our near-drowning story HERE)

Thanks in advance for reading and sharing –



  1. My 10 month old son nearly drown last year while I was talking to another lady at the pool and my husband was on a phone call. We were just a few feet away from him when he crawled from the splash pad to the big pool. I’m getting really anxious about summer and swimming with all my kids (I’ll have 6 by the end of June). My heart aches and I sound the warning with you!

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