Motherhood: an overwhelming privilege

I was at dinner on the first night I arrived in North Carolina for She Speaks, deep into conversation with my new friend Megan. We had an instant connection, and we didn’t mess around much with the small chat, but as writers, we dove down deep into our stories.

And then she asked me something.

“What’s it like to be Brenna’s mom?”

I knew it wasn’t a surface question that I was supposed to answer with a general “things are good!”

“Overwhelming,” I answered after a minute.

“And a privilege.”

Indeed, it is my overwhelming privilege to be the mother of these two beautiful children that God has entrusted to me. And it is an overwhelming privilege to care for my daughter, day in and day out.

In the beginning of Brenna’s life, I prayed a lot for her life. I prayed for purpose, I prayed that she would influence good and bring people closer to God.

And I thanked God, even in the most devastating times and even in the most stressful times, for choosing me, for giving her to me.

I don’t know that I would have had the strength and understanding to choose her for my daughter… so I am grateful that God chose me for her instead. He knew that we needed each other.

It is a privilege to care for my baby girl.

With each Aquaphor application, several times a day, it is a privilege to bring relief and moisture to her dry skin. To smooth lotion over her tightened skin as we talk and sing and kiss.

With each bath, despite her cries, it is a privilege to minimize her daily discomfort.

As I carefully scoop skin out of her ear canals each evening, it is a privilege to enhance her hearing.

With every cuddle when she is sick, it is a privilege to wrap her in a blanket, giving her warmth and love and touch.

And with every new word, new bite to eat, new milestone, it is a privilege to be her encourager and her biggest fan.

It is an overwhelming privilege to be the one chosen to teach her pride and dignity and respect… to help give her self-assurance and strength… to guide her through life… … to be her protector and her advocate.

It is an overwhelming privilege to be given each of these days to love my children as big and as fiercely as I can.

Thank you, God, for this gift of motherhood that is so overwhelming and so beautiful – it is my privilege.


  1. tia says

    thank you for your wonderful post.
    you are a wonderful mother! I am currently feeling down with my son’s genetic condition. reading your post remind me to thanks God for all the privilege that indeed He gave to us.

  2. yeni says

    You are so strong! God has blessed you in being able to have your baby girl by your side.In the bible it says in the feature their will no longer be sickness or death. We need to have faith in the loard. May God bless you and your family.

  3. says

    What a beautiful daughter – gift from God! God knew what He was doing when He gave her you as a mama too! I have rare serious autoimmune issues and we are troubleshooting some issues my 7 year old daughter seems to be developing along the same lines. I’m thankful we have God to lean on and draw strength from! If I didn’t know Jesus and trust Him with me and my daughter, who is child in her own right, I’d be curled up in a ball. There really is so much beauty in the hard of life because God uses all things for our good. God bless you and your precious girl!

  4. Katie says

    Wow! Stumbled across your site somehow and just Wow! The grace you are facing this perfectly imperfect life with is inspiring, humbling and a blessing to us reading it. Thanks for sharing your story – It’s a beautiful one.

  5. Sandra says

    I am so moved by your post. What an amazing mother you are and truly personify unconditional love . You are one of God’s special people. God bless you , your family and your beautiful daughter Brenna . What a blessing she is.

  6. jen says

    Thank you so much for this post – I really needed to read this today. A gentle reminder to special needs parents of the challenges and great privilege we have to care for our little ones.

  7. Mary says

    Courtney you are an inspiration to mother’s everywhere and the true definition of unconditional love & caring. The way that you have loved & accepted Brenna even though in many eyes she is not perfect-I for one have come to see her as a beautiful blessing from God and an inspiration to all. Brenna will grow up to be a strong & independent woman not afraid to stand up for what she believes or afraid to teach others the true meaning of unconditional love & acceptance. Thank you Courtney for being the perfect role model for women & mothers everywhere-“GOD BLESS YOU”

  8. Patricia says

    You are a fantastic writer….along with being an incredible and inspiring parent. Thank you for continuing to share your family’s journey.

  9. Julie says

    Brenna is absolutely stunning. I am so grateful she pushed through her infections at birth and has been growing. What a miracle! She will touch and change so many lives. She has a divine purpose on this Earth. And you too, as her mother.

  10. Kelly says

    Your perspective is an amazing God given gift to you! Many never have the opportunity to see through ‘those’ eyes. You will never be the same again.
    I too had a precious daughter, Alicia, although she just moved to heaven and is now in my future, she blessed me for 17 yrs with life changing days and forever I am grateful to be her Mom. I don’t know my next chapter but her story is not complete and so I pray for other families like yours and wait to help where I can. Tell her how beautiful she is and kiss her everyday. ❤️

  11. says

    Brenna is BEAUTIFUL and so are you!
    Your family’s story is so special and I appreciate you sharing it.
    I said a prayer for your family just now. You sound like a family that everyone would have picked if they had been so lucky!!
    Have a blessed day!

  12. Marcela says

    Courtney I just wanted to tell you are in deed blessed since from what I read Brenna seems to be a bunddle of joy!!! I’m a new mom of a 3 month old baby girl; experiencing motherhood has being incredible and I have to say that besides feeling blessed you should be proud of yourself. Being a great mum isnt easy, and putting away your worries when a child is sick to give a smile and take care of them when they might be in disonfort or pain… it takes lots of love but also courage! So I think Brenna is also blessed to have you. Wishing you both and your family all the best from Mexico.

  13. says

    Such lovely words about your lovely daughter. You are both so lucky to have one another. I have a sweet 2 year old boy who doesn’t notice people’s differences yet, and I’m going to teach him early on that different is beautiful. I also work with students who have hearing loss & it is an overwhelming privilege that I get to teach them the same thing. God bless you on your beautiful journey of Motherhood.

  14. Angela robinson says

    You are so inspiring to me, and probably many, you bring so many things to light I would not have thought about. You have such a beautiful life with your family. And my goodness your daughter-that smile those bright intelligent eyes. I bet you make her proud every day, and everyday she learns from you what beautiful kindhearted people exist in the world. No doubt I’m sure days are hard for you guys, and no doubt there are cruel people in this world, but through all of it you show her and U.S. The beauty by allowing us into your story. Thank you. From one mom to another.

  15. Rachel C says

    I really needed this today – I know you wrote this a year or so ago, but it fits me today. After two miscarriages I had the privilege of having a baby girl (now 5) who has a serious neurological speech disorder. One more miscarriage and then we had a dear son (now 2) who has multiple heart defects. He has already had two open heart surgeries, but now we have to wait to see how long his heart can keep up with his growth and then start to fail. At that point we will go on the transplant list. my kids appear healthy to those we are around until my daughter opens her mouth and until you see the scars under my sons shirt. Through all of this I am so grateful that God saw fit to make me their mother- it doesn’t mean my days are easy though. Blessing to you and your family

  16. maria says

    She is truly beautiful, and I am not saying that just to be polite – I would have thought that even if I did not know of her particular skin type. I do not think her features are at all smaller than they should be either. Even that her skin is a bit pink is not such a feature that would cause me to stare. This little baby girl is going to be just fine and so are all of you, but then you did not need me to tell you that! You are beautiful too, as is your little boy, and your husband must be too! I appreciate so much your post on how you wish others to respond to you and your little one. I think it should be common sense but sadly it is not! Thank you for being so frank. I know it helped me be a little more aware!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *