You’re my firstborn and only child right now. Unfortunately, that makes you the guinea pig baby, and I’m the guinea pig mom trying to figure this all out over here, too.

I’m a work in progress, and you are illustrating such patience and forgiveness. 

I’m making a lot of mistakes. 

I’m guessing. 

I’m falling short. 

I have no idea what I’m doing most of the time, but you don’t know any better. You practice such grace through it all even as a toddler, and I’m so full of gratitude for you seeing me through while we learn together. 

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Thank you for forgiving me when . . . 

Your bath water is too cold. 

Your diaper is on backward. 

I don’t slice the veggies the right way. 

I swaddle you incorrectly. 

I bounce you too hard. 

Your music is too quiet. 

Your shoes don’t fit like they should. 

I bonk your head getting you into your car seat. (You forgive this every time! Why are you so nice to me?!)

You forgive all of this and more and you forgive so quickly. You don’t hold any of this against me. 

It’s truechildren really do have the purest of hearts. 

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Sometimes you forgive me for even larger mom fails. Moments when I’m out of line and you deserve better. Despite my best efforts to practice peaceful parenting and keep my coolsometimes I really lose it. 

Your heart is bigger than your pride, and you accept my apologies with the warmest embrace. I owe you for these too, sweet little one. 

Thank you for forgiving me when I yell. I say, “Mommy’s sorry. I got a little upset,” and you give me a big, sloppy kiss and offer me a LEGO as you sit by my side. 

Thank you for forgiving me when I walk away and take a break. You have open arms and don’t hold a grudge when I return to the room. 

Thank you for being willing to let mommy make mistakes and learn.

I’ll do better the next time I have a child, with your baby brother or sister, and that’s all due to your willingness to support me as I figure out parenthood. Thank you for easing the immense guilt I feel for apologizing left and right to you. 

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Your forgiveness carries me through. As Scripture speaks, “Forgive them, for they know not what they’ve done” (Luke 23:34). You understand, even at such a young age, that learning deserves second chances and there’s beauty in owning our own actions. 

I tell you often that I love you and I’m so proud of you, but today I wanted to say thank you for bearing with me while I learn how to be your mom. 

P.S. We love the encouragement in the five-star rated book, Risen Motherhood: Gospel Hope for Everyday Moments. Don’t have time to sit and read? Listen here, on Audible.

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Jennifer Bailey

Stay at home mom enjoying one little boy and navigating parenting one trip to Target at a time.