I Cannot be Available to Everyone, Every Minute of Every Day, and it’s OK 

Emelda De Coteau
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Emelda De Coteau

Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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Photo Credit: Kalen Emsley
People expect our constant availability – phone, text, social media and email. Technology has birthed a culture grounded in a constant stream of endless obligatory chatter.

What happens when you seek quiet instead of IG, FB and Twitter feeds? Or if you decide you’re not interested in following the “behind- the-scenes look” at someone else’s life on Snapchat. You simply want to stand in your present moment, phone on the charger, or off all together for a while. Can we just be, y’all? Geez!

Apparently, this whole revolutionary non-available concept is irritating to some people. Last week I found myself in a back-and-forth exchange via Facebook which started because a new friend called me, and I didn’t answer the phone.

My momentary inaccessibility became interrupted as rude and callous, instead of an opportunity for them to pause and see it from another angle – maybe, just maybe, I was unavailable for numerous reasons. Nai and I were actually playing together in the backyard, bathing our cocoa brown skin in the emerging summer sunlight, lying in newly planted grass, our laughter overflowing, making a mundane weekday joyful.

I’m not a fan of distracted-parenting so I rarely engage in long convos with friends when homeschooling, reading or just hanging with our little Nai. Our moments together are precious.

The whole incident is causing me to reflect quite a bit on this rapid  “communication” evolution, and the impact it’s having on our personalities and ways of being with one another. Impatience is the new normal. And for far too many of us, instant gratification also means instant access to people. If we cannot have it,  we pout like toddlers insisting on their favorite snacks instead of dinner.

The concept of boundaries is somehow foreign to us, especially younger generations who have never known a world where you do not have multiple ways of reaching someone, any time of the day or night.

I am dating myself here, y’all, but I actually remember, as a kid, when very few people carried cell phones. If you weren’t home, you weren’t available. Folks connected with each other when it worked for both of them. You didn’t feel pressure to talk, and reply to incessant text messages and social media updates.

The act of cultivating genuine friendships is quickly being replaced with a vapid practice of familiarizing ourselves with people’s lives (an edited version of course) via social media, calling them friends, and then basing their value upon how often they comment, like or share our own thoughts. This isn’t friendship, it’s forced interaction and brazen selfishness.

I don’t know about you, but I am done with feeling bound by other people’s expectations of me, their pseudo ideas of friendship. If I don’t have another IG heart, or like on a post, I will survive. My soul is yearning for so much more these days, you know authentic and lasting connections based on understanding and love, not the thorny entanglement of ego. Our time is far too fleeting and miraculous to be squandered.

Talk to Me: 

Do you feel guilty if you’re not able to connect with someone right away? Why do you think so? How can you move beyond those feelings? 

My Word for 2016 is Breakthrough

Emelda De Coteau
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Emelda De Coteau

Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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I grew tremendously in the spirit this year, friends. Bible verses I casually read or heard my parents mention are now daily staples, posted on doors and various rooms around my house. 

Devotional time, once a sporadic practice, is now a lifeline and grounding force. Struggle does this to us. It urges connection with something greater than ourselves. I choose to seek God and faith.

2015 challenged us to expand in novel ways as we sought healing for our family, both spiritual and physical. You see, when you work side by side, with your child, helping them overcome speech delay and sleep issues, God teaches you, within each moment, about unconditional love, patience, and relentless endurance. Suddenly small stuff is inconsequential. Who cares about a traffic jam? 

You begin to live in a state of gratitude for blessings, both grand and small. Words become audible miracles. What others take for granted you celebrate. 

A few months ago we took our daughter to the Healing Room for prayer. Afterwards, we stood outside in the crisp autumn air, as she played. A young woman I never met walked up to me, her coca-brown face filled with joy. And I will never forget what she quickly shared: “I don’t know you. I don’t know your daughter, but I have been praying for you since you all arrived. I heard one word while I was praying: breakthrough. God is going to give your daughter and your entire family a breakthrough!”

Oh how my tears flowed. Wow. Breakthrough. I rolled the word over and over in my mind as I hugged my Mom excitedly. Oh friends, inmoments of doubt and despair I hold on to that word from God, delivered by a young woman I never met. 

Breakthrough. This is my word for 2016. Each year I select one. Well, this year, God reminded me to be guided by the spirit for this word.  My heart is full with gratitude and joy for what is to come. 

Ever chosen a word for the year? Excited about 2016? Tell me why! 

Living In Color

Emelda De Coteau
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Emelda De Coteau

Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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Image

Rocking a tutu with no apologies, laughing until you cry, dreaming and acting boldly, this is living in color, living awake.

I believe what Einstein once said: “There are only two ways to live your life, one is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”