Tuesday, July 22, 2014

I am Beautiful

Good morning!  I have a layout to share with you today and an update on Cortney.  
First, I wanted to share this layout of Cortney inspired from Christina Aguilera's song, Beautiful. 
When you have a disability, that is often what people see. Sometimes the only thing they see.  It is difficult for many to look past that. 
Cortney has had numerous struggles in her life.  Therapy, surgeries, people being less than kind to her, and the countless stares.  As her mom it has been difficult to watch. I am her guardian, the protector, but sometimes I just can't shield her from everything.
It can be easy to be on the "Pity Potty" and stay there for awhile.  Because as much as I love Cortney there are still those moments when I think, "What should have been."  How would she be if she were a typical 19 year old? Would she play sports? Be on the honor roll? Give me hell? ;)
What about all the things she (I) will miss? No weddings.  No dad walking her down the aisle.
No children for her.
Her life is so different than the one I had imagined for her when I was pregnant. 19 years later and I still feel the loss. 
Do I think about this all the time? Certainly not.
But it creeps in from time to time.
Most of the time, I see a beautiful girl who loves to model. 
Who has touched the lives of many.
who has taught us unconditional love.
To slow down and enjoy all the little things life offers.
Hilda Burke from Angel Eyes Photography photographed Cortney last week to help expand her portfolio.
She brought her son, Eric along for the shoot. 
They were truly amazing! 
They were kind.
And Eric didn't mind one bit acting a bit crazy with his arms in the air to get Cortney to laugh.
This is when I remind myself that we are blessed. 
We have met some selfless and amazing people.
People we probably wouldn't have met if Cort had been your "typical" 19 year old.
Please visit Hilda's blog. 
She is an incredible photographer and she has numerous photos of Cortney.
As well as Cort's story.
Thank you for letting me share a bit of my heart. 


Margie Higuchi said...

One word...beautiful. The page, the pictures, the post and of course, Cort! Just tugged at my heart a little this morning. LOVE YOU BOTH!! Michele, you are AMAZING...just sayin'! xoxoxoxo

BeckyTE said...

Yes, Courtney is indeed beautiful. What gorgeous blue eye she has and a wonderful face that brightens my day. Blessings on the runway next month!! I know you are proud of her and that she is having a dream fulfilled.

Sonya said...

Stunning photos...and a beautiful layout. What a journey you have had.

Vickie said...

She is "BEAUTIFUL" The Lo makes her more beautiful.


Paula said...

I can identify with all you have said. Beautiful page and post, Michele.

Gloria Stengel said...

She is beautiful and she has an amazing mom. I am lifting you in prayer today. I ask the Lord to give you the strength you need to keep doing this "mom job" and I ask that He give you the patience to deal with people who are "less than." I also ask Him to tighten that bond that you have with your daughter so that you both feel the blessing of each other! Hugs!

DIANA L. said...

Beautiful layout.wonderful photos thanks for the inspiration, Have a Blessed day, DIANA L.
http://dianamlarson.blogspot.com http://dianamlarson.ctmh.com

KellyCreates said...

Thank you for sharing this poignant post. Sometimes life doesn't give us what we expect, but somehow our journey can be more fulfilling because of it. You and Cortney are doing a fabulous job of raising awareness for all disabled individuals and are proof that hope and inspiration abound no matter the circumstances.

Anonymous said...

Awww Courtney is beautiful! I love how the word spread about her modeling dream you always capture her innocence in your pics! Also great LO Michele ;)

Denice said...

I always love to stop by your blog to see your gorgeous projects, but mostly I stop by because of how personal you make every post.
Your daughter is beautiful, sounds like she had a fun photo shoot!

Juliana Michaels 17turtles said...

Beautiful! All of it!!!

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Aileen said...

Always enjoy reading about Courtney and can feel where you are coming from. My daughter Elysha has downsyndrome and hearing impaired and a wonderful bubbly sense of humor. But life can get to all of us at some time and people not seeing past the disability can be the hardest to deal with at times. Stay positive, you have such a beautiful daughter, enjoy every minute of your lives together. It will be a unique journey and you need to share as many of those moments as you can. Sharing helps you survive and others understand.

Sparky said...

Hilda's photographs of Cortney are beautiful. She absolutely shines in them. I always look foward to, and enjoy, hearing what Cortney is up to. She's a lovely young woman and a wonderful reflection of a loving family. You're a good, loving mom, Michelle. I thank you for sharing.

Unknown said...

I love how human your post is because you are not trying to sugar coat anything. I have always admired the way you love Cortney. It's only when you have to take on the full time care of someone that you can truly understand the up's and down's of being a caregiver. The fact is you are a wonderful caregiver, mom, protector, guardian and advocate for her. She's a lucky girl! My dad always believed that disabled children were special. They are! If ignorant people can't see that then it is totally their loss. Sending you hugs of encouragement and support. xx

vdoyle8 said...

You and your daughter are beautiful, inside and out. Lovely page.

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Sentimental Scrapper said...

Beautiful post! I admire you so much for all you do as Cortney's mom. Beautiful scrapbook page and a beautiful daughter!