Cherie Burton



This is an entry from an old blog of mine – a couple of years ago. It’s about my only girl, now 12.

Sigh–I miss her at this sweet stage:

Wed, April 1, 2009

My ten year old daughter, Savannah, has had difficulty staying in her bed at night. “I just don’t like being alone,” is her best verbal offering, despite the fact she’s been in her own room since age two. Why the sudden angst with my most independent child?

At least 20 mornings last month I was waking to find her either cuddled (more like smashed) between me and the nightstand...OR crammed in with little bro in his twin bed. Seven-year-old Sunshine Sawyer was much more of a sport about it than Daddy and I.

Two weeks ago, plagued by kinked neck #10, I decided it was Intervention Time. A sleeping-all-by-herself chart was created -incentives attached- and she seemed determined. After an earnest bedtime prayer and my best “YOU choose to cast out your own fears” motivational speech, I sat on the edge of her bed, held her hand, and looked deeply into her royal blue eyes.

“You can do this,” I assured her. “You are so much stronger than you think, sweetie.” A look of sudden knowing passed over her countenance and she simply said to me, “‘Night, Mommy.”

So…I walk away…and I’m thinking to myself…as I strut down the hall, ” Hey,” (side click of the mouth; one eyebrow raised; head cocked to the side), “I reeeally got through to my kid.” Yeah! I’m big. I’m bad. I’m…absolutely clueless.
I was giving her assurances of her own strength, but she knew where it originated. I sauntered into her room at midnight, and with a lump in my throat, beheld the following scene:

My mother gave this picture to Savannah at her baptism and it’s always seemed to hold personal significance to her. “Buzzy Boo” (the fave stuffed tiger and longtime security clutch) is the staple standby…but it took a little bit of concentrated effort to walk all the way across her room that night to get this picture of Jesus off her dresser.

So she could hold on to Him.

I praised her the next morning for knowing in Whom she has trusted, and thanked her for teaching me about courage. Beaming, she says to me, “Mom, I felt like He was with me last night.”

Sleeping by herself hasn’t been much of a problem since. We both know she’s not reeeeally sleeping alone after all.

Post-script: (fast forward 2 1/2 yrs; smack-dab in the throes of tweenhood)
The freckles are fading…Buzzy Boo is history…she sleeps in the dark basement without fear…but she is still trying to explore that divine independence. Sometimes I wish she would plow into my room in the middle of the night again and cuddle me so close that I’d be crushed against my nightstand and get a good ol’ righteous kinked neck.

Kind of.

I hafta laugh when I see these kinds of expressive creations on her Facebook:

Savannah – the girl on the right with the flower on her head and the fire of “let me be me” in her heart

I’m just relieved that even though Buzzy Boo and the pink gingham sheets have been shelved, that picture of her Savior still graces her nightstand.