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

Once upon a time (aka June 29, 2012) there was a young mom with two young kids. That mom tried to be a good mom, and took pride in her parenting. Her kids were everything to her, and her world revolved around them. But one thing this mom didn't realize is that small and simple distractions were creeping in to her life, slowly driving a wedge between her focused brain, and her kids. She found herself in the same room as them, but not present. Emails, Facebook, texting, and Instagram kept her phone at her fingertips at all times, and her ears only half-listening to the chatter and stories her kids would excitedly spout in her direction.

One day these distractions almost killed her son.

And now, that mom is determined to change and to *hopefully* inspire parents everywhere to do the same.

Please read this story about how I rediscovered The Gift of Presence HERE.

Since June is Focus on Summer month, I really feel strongly that I need to remind you all of the most traumatic experience of my life. Please, I encourage everyone to sit down when you have a quiet moment, grab your spouse, and READ THIS STORY... share it. Email it. Facebook it. Pin it on Pinterest. Not because I want the page views, but because if it helps just one parent avoid the tragic mistake I made, then I can die a satisfied person.

My husband and I sit down together and read it in full every summer, to help remind us how important it is to focus on our kids, especially at the pool. It's still really hard to read. It gives me flutters of anxiety every time I get to the point in the story where I know “it's” coming. I tend to have bad dreams after reading it. To this day it's still hard to watch my son swim, because every time he jumps in the water and is submerged for a moment or two, I picture seeing his blue face under the water. It haunts me. I remember every explicit detail like it was yesterday. But I read it, and read it, and read it every year anyway, because sadly I'm human (aka NOT perfect) and need constant inspiration and reminders.

So, please, READ IT. Share it. Send it to your spouse. And for heaven's sake, give your kids the Gift of Presence this summer.