Life Changes--Lori on Courtnee's Birthday

Hello again. Are you ready for another Life Transition? Here is one of mine.

Meet Lori:

I am Lori.
I am the mother of 4 daughters and the wife to my sweet lawyer husband.
I run marathons and Ragnar Relays.
I drink green smoothies and sometimes Diet Coke.
I like to cook good food because I like to eat.
I like to design…houses, parties, gardens, weddings, outfits.
I love to read.
I love to blog.
I love to sleep.
I love my family.
I love my friends.
I love my dogs…and sometimes my cat.
I love my Ipod.
I try hard to be a good person…sometimes I’m not, but I keep trying.
I love my life…and I am learning to love me.

Here are some of my thoughts on life transitions:

This is a photograph of Daughter 1, Courtnee. Isn’t she amazingly beautiful! Did you notice she is wearing a wedding dress? That is because last summer she put that wedding dress on and walked into the Draper Utah Temple and married Geoff. And now I am the mother of a married daughter and I am also a mother-in-law. Wow.

Today is Courtnee’s birthday and she is 20 years-old…and I’m not sure how that happened. When I look at this photo of her, I see a sweet spot on her forehead that reminds me of all the years that I used to fix her hair, and kiss her forehead, and wash her face. I see teeth that I used to brush…I remember when there was only one and then two. I see eyes that still sparkle with life. I see a soft baby and then a little girl that would curl up on my shoulder and go to sleep. I see a little girl that learned to crawl and climb and then walk and run. I hear little words and phrases that were just hers… “I need some!” and “What’s that?” and “Doe.” I feel a sweet baby that smelled like apricots and felt like heaven. I see the tiny baby that changed my life in so many ways and taught me about a fierceness to love that I didn’t know was possible. I see that I would not be as complete or happy or good without her. I see the sweet baby that was my first everything, the sweet girl that was still my first everything, the sweet woman that will always be my first everything. When I look at this photo of Courtnee, I see a woman that is more than I ever hoped she would be, but somehow she is exactly the woman that I knew she would be.

Can I make a birthday wish on Courtnee’s birthday? I wish that today I could relive one hour of each year that she has been alive. This is what we would do:

Birthday—hold her and kiss her and smell her and look at every part of her so hard that I would never forget.
Year One—take a walk in the sunshine, eat a popsicle, rock her until she fell asleep.
Year Two—read a book, draw a picture, sing a song.
Year Three—go to the beach.
Year Four—go to the zoo.
Year Five—take a nap together.
Year Six—go to the park for a picnic.
Year Seven—brush her hair while she reads to me.
Year Eight—go swimming and eat ice cream.
Year Nine—play with puppies and kittens.
Year Ten—go on a bike ride.
Year Eleven—dance in the rain.
Year Twelve—climb a mountain
Year Thirteen—she talks and I listen.
Year Fourteen—skip school and go to a movie.
Year Fifteen—lay on the trampoline and look at the stars.
Year Sixteen—go on a long car ride with the windows down and the music up loud.
Year Seventeen—get a pedicure and a manicure.
Year Eighteen—I talk and she listens.
Year Nineteen—Laugh.
Year Twenty—eat birthday cake for breakfast.
*Every hour: hug her and kiss her and tell her again and again how much she is loved.

Wouldn’t that be fun! I wish I could have that wish every year on her birthday. It is hard for my mind to remember all the details of her life, but my heart knows them all. It will never forget.

This is Courtnee’s first birthday that I have been away from her. I miss her. I wish she was here so that I could hug her and kiss her and tell her how much she is loved. I wish that for just a moment I could feel what it felt like to hold her in my arms the very first time. I wish that for just a moment things would not change…ever.

Happy Birthday, Courtnee. I love you.

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