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Summer Reading Part 2 – A few words from Courtney’s Mom

June 8, 2010

Last week I wrote about summer reading, as we come closer to the first anniversary of Courtney’s passing we’ve been sharing a little more about what this foundation and our  work all means to us. To carry on Courtney’s dream of helping children with special needs is helping us (her family) stay close to her and at the same time help provide special education programs with tools. Courtney started on that path and we will keep it going. Tonight I’ll share with you a few words from Courtney’s (and mine & Lee’s) mother.

It was a year ago this week that Courtney arrived in Texas with her three kids. DadDay and I waited at the bottom of the escalator like we always do when kids come home to El Paso; you can go no further and this is the first place you can see them. I saw eight tennis shoes on two steps, then bags and pillows, and then Teddy’s head, Ashleigh’s head, Thomas’ and then my beautiful daughter, all smiles. Funny what you remember, especially when before this month would end… I wanted to replay everything.

Courtney came late to the joy found in reading. School was a struggle for her. That was the reason she could relate to special needs kids. She needed more time to process words. That is until the Twilight series. I hope Stephanie Meyers understands one day that her books were the last thing my daughter read. I had to read them because of Courtney and I loved them too. Ask my kids, any measure of horror or diasaster in print or film is my style.

Summer reading shifted dramatically when we lost her. I was given many books on how to survive the loss of a child, how to go on living, how to suck in air and open your eyes. The only thing that worked, in terms of books, was having my husband (the Imperial DadDay as he requires kids and grandkids to call him) read to me from the third reading of his favorite Patrick O’Brian series on life at sea (Master and Commander went to film). The comfort of his voice reading about a place far away was the only thing that got through. One day I put on my shoes. Then I began reading my own books. Life looks almost normal from one year away.
We are blessed with Kiki who still calls me every day. I am not lying…every day. Jane, Wells, and Lee are visiting. This summer we have Lee’s wife staying with us as she completes an internship. This house needs young people in it. It needs someone yelling for their keys, or asking for a dry towel, or wondering when we are going to eat. It is our own brand of crazy and I love it, every minute of it. Courtney’s kids will visit us too and we plan to swim and read and watch horror and disaster films. Then before they go to bed we can read Love You For Ever and Little by Little. That’s my summer reading.

I cannot wait to have Kiki’s baby here for the first time either. He has to learn how to be a Texas boy!

We’re coming soon Mom, and he’s already getting lessons on being a Texas boy:Little Texan Reader

Little by Little,


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