My Courtney girl

~How can you mend a broken heart?~

I can remember the instant I laid eyes on her for the first time. I just couldn't believe it was a girl! I was so excited. I wanted a girl so bad...and here she was instant love. She was a stunningly beautiful baby. Lots of dark hair, dark eyes, beautiful pink I was smitten with her immediately. I think there's something special about your first born. Of course there are special things about each and every one of my children. I love each one equally, but in such different ways....and my firstborn. My Courtney girl. I always tell her she's so special because she's the one who made me a mom. By the time the others got here I was already a mom. But she's the one the Lord hand-picked to make me a mother. I adore her. I can remember when she was little how sweet she was. For her first halloween she was a "court" jester...get it? haha :)

She was ten months old and sweet as they come! You can ask anyone who has ever known Courtney...she is and always has been a golden child. There is something about her. She has the most amazing personality...people are drawn to her. And she's never met a stranger. She is instant friends with anyone she meets. And the sense of humor on that girl!!! So funny! She used to crack me up when she was little because she was addicted to her pacifier. Or should I say pacifiers(ssssss). LOL She always had one in her mouth and at least one more in her hands. She called them her "pfa-pfa's".

She just has the most sparkling, amazing, beautiful, resilient personality....just like her mom! ;) BUT, she's also passionate, opinionated, and bull-headed...just like her mom!

Everyone always told me these days would be coming..... THE TEENAGE YEARS. (*gulp*)I never dreaded them much because I have great kids...really I do. For the most part my kids are awesome. But lately Courtney and I have really been butting heads. She has turned from an insanely adorable precocious little girl into an opinionated, mouthy teenager! Now don't get me wrong...for the most part she's still amazing.

But there are the occassions that she's anything but! We butt heads like crazy sometimes...mainly because she has to get the last word in...even if the last word is an eye roll, or a loud heavy sigh (oh I hate those!) know what I mean! And everytime this is happening it's seeming to get worse and worse...because she just won't learn. Tonight hit a fever pitch.

It actually started yesterday when she was constantly mouthing off and managed to get herself grounded (typical) and ended up tonight with she and I literally nose to nose and me yelling "if you don't like it here thenGET OUT!" And her reply was "Fine, I will!!!" and she stormed out the door and disappeared into the cold dark....with no coat might I add.

Nothing like this has EVER happened before and so it was kind of surreal at first. I was FURIOUS. That is such an understatement!!! Man oh man! But after about twenty minutes of her not coming back in the door ready for the drama to be over because she was cold....I started to worry. So I went out into the driveway and yelled for her. Nothing. I yelled louder. Nothing. I screamed her name. Nothing. I couldn't believe this. I went back into the house and stood at the sink wondering what the heck I should do and praying a silent prayer.

I was at a major crossroads in my life. My daughter. My flesh and blood... my heart was out in the cold with no coat, no where to go and being stubborn as a mule! I was infuriated and worried sick all at the same time. Where was she??? I couldn't believe this was happening. I suddenly started having flashbacks to every primetime show, Oprah, Maury, 60 minutes, etc. that I had ever seen where you hear "They thought it could never happen to them...she was always such a good girl....and then she was gone." Or something along those lines. What if she ran away? What if she fell into the wrong hands? What if she got hurt? What if she was gone.

Oh the power of a moment!

So I ended up piling my kids in the car and taking her cell phone and combing the streets while calling every friend in her phone book to see if they had heard from her. No one had. Finally after about an hour I saw her walking down a street about three blocks from our house shivering and crying. She got in the car and in an instant I felt the most amazing wave of relief and gratefulness wash over me.... and then I wanted to kill her!
We came home and still had a few words to say to each other...can you believe she still had some sass in her??? OH HECK NO!!! So I made her sit down with the dictionary and look up honor, respect & INFURIATED. She also had to look up and read to me Deuteronomy 5:16 "16Honour thy father and thy mother, as the LORD thy God hath commanded thee; that thy days may be prolonged, and that it may go well with thee"...and we had a long talk about that. She seemed to get it. At least for tonight she does.

She's sleeping now. She's safe. She's warm. I walk by her door and I start to tear up. I can remember when a dear friend of mine faced a similar situation several years ago when his daughter ran away one night. He was torn up. And when she came home and he walked past her bedroom door he said he just wanted to go in and strangle her but at the same time he was just so overwhelmingly grateful that she was there. I now know the feeling.
As a parent of teenagers you are just pretty much helpless. You can hope they will yield to you, but they are old enough that if they want to be rebellious they're going to be. I'm so not used to that.

So for tonight my beautiful firstborn daughter is sleeping under my roof, right where she always has been, right where she should be. God help me I don't know what I'm gonna do when she gets married or moves out! My heart is going to be ripped from it's cavity! But I guess that's what this process is about to some extent...getting me ready to let her go.
Bringing her into my home in the first place was so painful (36 hours of labor on Christmas day!!! )...and getting her ready to leave my home hurts even worse.