37 Shots

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For your encouragement and a little comic relief, I thought I’d write out an account of the last few days…

We have come to love family sleepovers. I especially appreciate the casual one am conversation after the kids have all fallen to sleep one by one and there’s no pressure to get home or get out. It’s usually a time of deep conversation and belly rolling laughter. The morning after, however, I’m typically ill prepared for the day. Two mammas and a few short hours of sleep is no match for entertaining twelve kids! A lazy afternoon sprinkled with a dance party, prayer together, and an infinite number of four square games later… We said goodbye just in time to hop on a Skype call… that went exceedingly well and lasted until a few hours past dinner… and bedtime.

After closing the computer and realizing how late it was, I was both shocked and impressed that the kids hadn’t busted in fainting to the floor in starvation… leading those on the other end of the camera to realize that we were the worst kind of parents; deserting our kids to roam the house unattended and unfed while we shut ourselves in the back room. I was tired. He was too. The last thing we wanted to do was have to figure out what to cook, but I acknowledged that it was the responsible choice since we had already spent money on food over the weekend. We sluggishly emerged and made our way to the kitchen… where we found a counter full of food!!

It seems like such a small thing, to ask the Lord what he would have you do with a bunch of leftover enchiladas after a meeting… but to the family without a job who is trying to make wise decisions and still opening their home to others, who has a crew of mouths to feed but didn’t plan dinner and let time get away while sharing stories of God’s provision… It was no small thing at all. It was a blessing that both awed and encouraged us. A couple months ago I shifted my focus from asking the Lord to provide our daily bread to thanking him for it. Something about not having a traditional paycheck has led us to see His provision in new ways.

And the very next day… I received a message from the nanny we were pursuing… she canceled our meeting this week and I’ve been unable to reach her since. Defeat flooded my heart. How quickly I turned from worship to realize yet another area of misplaced hope. As another night turned to day and I remembered that God will provide for all that we need…

We marched eight kids into two small rooms for physicals and immunizations. Although several of our children had not yet had the experience, moving overseas has prompted us to get vaccinations. One by one they each received three to six shots. In retrospect, all eight of them in the same afternoon may not have been the best strategy. Thankfully, Dad was with us during the five and a half hour affair…

The oldest was to receive four shots, but as the nurse struggled to accommodate the wriggling and jolting in his anticipation of the sting… he ended up double poked a few times. One of our sons is an elaborate story teller. From the moment they realized that shots were coming… he would not. stop. talking. about the pain and the needles… and I thought he was going to work himself into a frenzy, because he’s also the one who faints at the sight of his own blood, but instead, he worked everyone else up… so much that his sister (also a fainter) slid to a limp puddle on the floor just after receiving her vaccinations. All the horrible fears flooded my mind as I bounced the three month old and ushered the two year old with my leg extended across the room and shouted for help while her brothers stood in shock trying to make sense of the situation. Daddy rescued her from the floor and her pale face soon perked up… unfortunately, this only succeeded to further traumatize the rest of them. Another one almost bit the dust, but we recognized the glazed eyes and swooped him up, laid him flat, and lifted his legs. Two of the little girls had to be held down for their shots and the screaming echoed the halls. Our sweet two year old repeated “I don’t like that” in desperate exasperation. And all the kids sobbed when they heard their baby sister (whose whaling greatly paled in comparison to many of their own) cry during her turn to receive what we told them was good for them. Oh my goodness… It was an event. We came home with 37 bandaids, two survivors of their first “turn and cough” examinations, a son who we were told has begun puberty, a bump and a bruise from a fall to the floor and several kids who might never step foot into a doctors office again… and did I mention that we were there for five and a half hours! As if that weren’t enough…

The baby was fussy and uncomfortable and we decided to give her some Tylenol. I accidentally grabbed the Children’s Ibuprofen and passed it to Dad… and he, thinking it was the Tylenol, attempted to use the squeeze lid and give her a dose… but instead, poured Ibuprofen out of the open top all over her face and watched her gag a significant helping down before he could react. Not knowing exactly how much she consumed, and pretty certain it was at least a double dose… we messaged a few doctor friends and ended up taking her up to the ER. Oh my word… I was certain that as I was led down the hallway, that they were taking us to wherever negligent parents go who need to be further questioned about the events leading to their visit. Oh my word… “wait until six months to give Ibuprofen” is forever engraved in my brain. When the young man who discharged us politely said “these things happen” I’m sure he was actually eye-rolling on the inside.  Baby is fine, never the wiser. Relieved, a little embarrassed, worn out, we made it home just in time to join our friends for dinner, of all the days… we were hosting City Group. And, of all the days… we had a first time visitor.

At some point, I was able to sit and think and reflect. My heart did some minor panicking during the day’s shenanigans and I realized that I needed to confess some misplaced hope and give over my fears.

Sometimes I think, oh my goodness, my life is so outlandish. And then I remember that God has a purpose and a plan to, in all things, bring Glory to his name and work even the most ridiculous of days for our good. Before the night ended we opened an envelope with a check that amounted to over 1/3 of what we needed to cover the rest of the repairs on our truck. It was such amazing grace to see his tangible care for our needs after such a stress filled day.

This morning we were handed a another sum, and then a little later opened the front door to find an envelope on the doorstep. Currently, we are just a couple hundred away from all of the repairs and look forward to getting the truck back soon! We had been sitting on some money that we were given earlier in the month and had been praying that God would provide the rest of what we need to pay for the auto repairs. As God has provided, I’ve realized that all the amazing stories we’ve read about; bread showing up at Mr. Muller’s house to feed hungry children, Bruchko looking down to find a ten dollar bill when he first arrived, was hungry , and had no money… we are experiencing the same amazing provision and grace! Sometimes provision looks like enchiladas and rice, other times it’s the money we need to pay the bills (and whether it comes in the form of a paycheck or a gift, it’s all from the Lord), sometimes it’s extra money to pay for the extra things (like unexpected auto repairs), and other times… it’s a crazy day filled with events you couldn’t have predicted or planned that lead you to your knees where you remember that God has always and will always be in control. Sometimes I wonder why? Why Lord, with everything else, why is the truck out of commission? Maybe it’s so we will turn to him… see his provision and praise him for it. We are abundantly and inadequately thankful for the incredible stories He is giving our family… I hope that sharing these stories with others might be used to bring Glory to His name.

Published by Tiffanie Lloyd

I am a detail-oriented and energetic multi-tasker traveling at the side of my best friend, and momma to eight amazing kids. God has gifted me with creativity; I'm an entrepreneur, writer, and photographer with a passion for women's health, particularity in childbirth. I'm a Parenting and Childbirth Educator, Doula, Breastfeeding Counselor, and working toward certification as a Holistic Nutritionist. Thanks for stoping by! Be sure to check out my archives, and sign up for notifications about new posts!

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