Wednesday Write-Up: Horrible Adventure

Sometimes you get more adventure than you bargained for. Sometimes an adventure is not good at the time, but scary and horrible. We had one of those adventures yesterday.

Yesterday was Wednesday here in Taipei (yes I am a bit late in posting this article…you will understand why soon). Chad went to go work on his book at a nearby coffee shop. Zoë and I went to an awesome indoor play area, aptly named Playspace (their website here, you will need to use google to translate. Or you can find english information on it here ) for the second time in as many days.

Playing at Playspace Photo By Jennifer Mitchell

Playing at Playspace
(c) andthreetogo

Zoë and I were both excited to go and play again. The day before we had played together with the wonderful array of quality toys and educational tasks for three hours. I was looking forward to letting her play in their amazing sand box as long as she wanted. It was supposed to be a enriching and fun time together.

We arrived at our destination and Zz played in the sand for a bit, but was a bit lethargic and cranky. She didn’t want to play with the other children and after 45 minutes she was ready to go home. We hopped in a taxi and she felt hot, like she had a fever. I texted Chad what was going on and that once we arrived at home, I was planning on taking her temp and giving her some advil if she indeed did have a fever.

I carried Zoë into the house and took her temp right away, it was 102.2 so I got out the Ibuprofen quickly and attempted to open it one handed as I held her.

That is when she went limp. I jostled her in my arms, calling her name and turned her head to me. Her eyes were open, but she was completely unresponsive. I called her name over and over, trying to wake her as I somehow managed to grab my purse and put on my shoes to leave for the hospital.

I remembered as I was almost out the door that I needed her passport. I ran back to try to find it… where the heck did I put it?!?! That is when she started to seize. She tensed up and twitched, making a clicking sound in her throat. I knew exactly what was happening, I have seen other children go through this when I worked in doctor offices, but I was still freaking out. I gave up on finding the passports and ran out the door with my unconscious baby mid-seizure, not even shutting the front door behind me.

I, of course, was out of minutes on my phone, but was still able to text Chad to “Call me mow” (its the best I could do while running down the hill). He called right away, I yelled, “She’s having a seizure, meet me at the hospital.” I do not know how I made it down the hill so fast, but I know that the whole time I was holding my still unconscious, but no longer seizing baby, screaming for someone to please help me. No one did, they all just stared, which makes sense since I was speaking english.

After I had run for about a quarter mile, a wonderful english speaking lady on a scooter stopped and gave me and Zoë a ride to the hospital. It was such a god-send, normally there is no way I would take Zoë on a scooter, especially helmet-less, but I was so thankful that we were able to get to the emergency room so quickly. I am by no means a runner, there is a meme that I love, it says “I would never run with scissors, actually those last two words were unnecessary.” It was pure endorphins that made me able to run so fast and far holding a limp 30 pound toddler.

I ran into the ER, screamed “She’s having a seizure” and was rushed right back to a bed, where a team of about ten people started her on an IV, placed her on oxygen, took all her vitals and got her history and information within 2 minutes of being there.

Chad got there about 10 minutes later, after Zoë had been treated for her high fever (103.6 F!!!) and was resting. Both of us were in shock at what was going on. Chad and I prayed together and alone for God to heal her and that the time in the hospital would not be traumatic for Z. The doctors informed us of the possible causes of the seizure, but definitely leaned towards a febrile seizure. A febrile seizure happens when a child, usually between the ages of 0-6 years old, spikes a fever so fast that their body can’t handle it and it causes a short seizure.

Despite the fact that all the facts pointed to a febrile seizure, the doctors still performed tests checking for any other possible cause as well as the cause of the fever. The care was excellent and efficient. The staff made a terrible situation into a manageable one.

Within two hours, Zoë had napped and woken up hungry and thirsty and ready to say “no” to everything we said. Our girl was back to normal! Thank you Jesus!!!

Eating Raisins and Chatting Away Photo by Chad R. Mitchell

Eating Raisins and Chatting Away
(c)andthreetogo

We waited in the ER for the next 4 hours waiting for test results, then were told that the fever was probably caused by a virus, as they couldn’t find anything else wrong with her. The kind doctor said we should give her ibuprofen every 6 hours and if the fever got any higher to bring her back. With that we picked up a prescription for Ibuprofen and headed home.

Zoë slept soundly all night, although Chad and I were up often, checking her temperature and her breathing. Today, she is back to her normal self and cutely telling us “Mommy, Daddy, look ZZ’s tattoo (what she calls her bandage from the IV), see but don’t touch.” She is running around the house and imagining that she is Tinkerbell and is flying with her magic feather. She loves to mix and match Disney movies.

Chad and I are spoiling our little girl today and I started to say to her earlier, “What a lucky girl you are,” but I had to stop myself. We are the lucky ones, we are the amazingly blessed people that get to raise and enjoy this gift from God. We are so blessed to have her. We knew that before, but something about going through this together, gives me a renewed sense of love and responsibility.

My Two Favorite People, I am Truly Blessed Photo By Jennifer Mitchell

My Little Family, I am Truly Blessed
(c) andthreetogo

Sometimes we get more adventure than we expected in our lives. Sometimes those adventures are bad in the moment. Regardless of the positive or negative nature of an adventure, we have them to grow and expand our lives. The adventure that all three of us lived through yesterday has given me a new realization of God’s true blessings that he has given me. God is good!

How precious is Your loving kindness, O God! Therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of Your wings. Psalm 36:7

Wednesday Write-Up: A Visitor! Opa!

After we left Athens, we took a four hour ferry ride to the island of Paros in the Cyclades. We are now settled in a wonderful little apartment just a 5 minute walk from the beach! We found our apartment on airbnb.com and have fallen in love with it. It is called Betty Apartments, and Betty has been an amazing hostess. For one thing, she does our laundry! She also cleans our room everyday! It has been a real vacation so far for us. We have had very busy days consisting of brunch, nap-time (for Zoë, although there have been times I wished it was mine), time at the beach, dinner and then some relaxation after Zoë’s asleep. Chad works in the mornings and while Zoë naps and I do my writing or cleaning then too. This life is amazing! This trip is amazing, and I feel so very blessed to be here. God is good!

Zoë hanging out on our back porch

Zoë hanging out on our back porch

Chad and Zoë walking back to our apartment

Chad and Zoë walking back to our apartment

We have been on the island now for 10 days. And as of two days ago, we now have a friend from Sonoma County staying with us! (We have tried harassing everyone to come and see us, but with the price of plane tickets these days…whew). Our friend, Nathan, has been traveling himself for the past half year or so. He was planning on being in Greece the same time as us, so, here he is! It has been so nice to see a familiar face thats not pixelated on skype or facetime. Both Chad and I have enjoyed having someone new to converse with, and hearing about his travels and what God is doing in his life. Hopefully, he is just as happy to be here as we are to have him here!

As it is whenever one has visitors, whether you are in your home or traveling, there are hiccoughs along the way, but the stories you will tell later about your time together will be even better because of them. For example, Zoë being over-tired at dinner last night and pushing her glass of water over so that Nathan had to make a quick dodge before getting deluged… well, that will be funny in the future right? And Chad getting the flu today and being bed-bound and unable to keep anything down except cola… we will laugh about that someday too.

God has impeccable timing for teaching us things that we didn’t realize that we needed to learn, and what I have learned in the past two days, is that I need to stop sweating the small things (I cringe at being so cliché…I’m sorry).

I need to see God blessing me with patience when Zoë screams as if I am water boarding her every time I have to wash her hair (we use tearless shampoo, the water’s a good temperature, I have tried every trick, she just hates washing her hair). I need to see that God is blessing me with a merciful attitude, when she accidentally punches me in the face while having a public melt-down. I need to see that everything around me, God has blessed to me. He has given me this opportunity to see the WORLD! I need to stop worrying about the small, insignificant things that will be forgotten or laughed at later and try laughing at them or forgetting them now.

How hard that is. When I have it down perfectly, I will let you all know. Until then, I will just keep trying and keep praying. God is good.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23

Wednesday Write-Up: The Small Things

It is the small things that change my day, either negatively (like my day last Wednesday…please try not to judge me harshly for my whining) or positively.

Today was a day where the small things have affected me positively. It has been an absolutely wonderful day! Thank you God!

We haven’t really done any touristy type things so far this week, Zoë and I have been playing around while Chad has tried to get all of his work accomplished before we head to Porto tomorrow for two days. I am very excited to see a new part of Portugal! This week has pretty much been a normal week, except today was amazing!

It may seem insignificant to some of you, but yesterday I finally found a salon where they have a waxer! The only kind of hair removal I had found here so far was laser hair removal (scary!), Nair, and a good old fashioned razor. Sorry, but none of these are for me, I need some beeswax and a couple of fabric strips to get rid of my unwanted hair.

So, back to the salon…Not only did the receptionist speak decent english (thank goodness, as my portuguese is still sub-par to say the least), but it’s literally two blocks from our apartment. I immediately made an appointment for myself to get the god-awful excess hair removed from my body. I have not been waxed since we were in Curacao over a month ago. For those of you that know me, you know that I am not really that hairy of a lady. I honestly do not have to shave my legs more than once every month or so (I really do realize how blessed I am by this). But my eyebrows and underarms…that is a whole other story. After letting my underarm hair grow for over a month, let me just say, I looked like I should have been at Woodstock. I finally caved and shaved them. It was a sad day for me, but it really had to be done, I could’t wait any longer and wasn’t willing to try the laser on such a sensitive area of my body.

I am now a hairless and happy woman! The esthetician was professional, personable and proficient in her work. It was so nice to be pampered for an hour today. I left feeling like I was walking on air, although that could have been the 10 pounds of hair I left behind.

Another thing that made this day wonderful, was that Zoë did not throw one tantrum all day, actually listened to my instructions, and we had a great time playing all day long! It was eye-opening to me how much her moods affects mine and vice versa. I guess I should get used to that fact, two females living together can cause some serious turmoil…poor Chad. Now I know how my parents felt, well just slightly…they had three girls and a boy…there were about 10 years there that someone was going through puberty in that house. That, to me, sounds like hell on earth…props to you Mom and Dad!

Chad and I have made some plans to leave Lisbon, we have booked and completely planned our next two destinations, which is very exciting to me. It is bittersweet though, I really love Lisbon. If Thailand doesn’t work out for us, I already told Chad I think we should consider coming back to Lisbon to stay.

The next two destinations are so different from where we expected to go, but God has other plans for us obviously. And I love that we are blessed to be able to do all this. Life is good. God is good. Now I just need to make sure my attitude stays good. Thanks for staying with me through the good and bad times my friends!

Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray. Is anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise. James 5:13