There it was. Right in that moment that you looked up at me with your big blue eyes, raised your foot and stomped it down, at the same time as the word “No” came out of your mouth.

Right in that moment, I knew for sure you were mine. Not only were you mine, but you were just like me.

I could see your strong personality start to manifest, at two-and-a-half years old, as you were trying to express your opinion in the only way you knew how. You were so determined to have things your way and you were not moving for anyone. My heart sank and soared at the same time. I was proud of the fact that you not only looked like me, but you also in a way acted like me, because I knew you would be OK. I knew no matter what life would throw at you, you would be able to handle it. But first, I had to start the hard slog of correcting the way you expressed these strong opinions. And yes, I knew it would be hard, because it is exactly what I went through to be who I am today.

As a mama who has been there and done that, I knew there was hope. I knew what it was like to be fierce and stubborn, but have learned to be soft-hearted and speak kindly. I knew what it was like to be single-minded without a care for how others felt, yet have learned to show compassion and love. I knew what it was like be fully convinced in your own mind that you were right, yet have learned to listen to the reasoning and wisdom of others. I knew if I could learn these things, then by the grace of God you could too.

As hard as it will be, at this stage of life, to get you to listen to reasoning and obey mama, I have hope. As many times as I know it will take to get you to put aside your emotions and learn to obey, I have hope. Because as strong as I see your stubborn streak is, I also see other areas of value that are just as strong, and can be made stronger.

When you love, you love big and give everything you have. When you give hugs, kisses and snuggles, you unashamedly express tenderness. When you smile, you shine with happiness from the inside out. When you forgive, you do it easily and without reservation. When you share, you do it freely and expect nothing in return. When you ask to help, you show your servant’s heart. When you find joy in being who you were created to be, you are unafraid to share it with others. So, I have hope.

But, I promise to do my best to help cultivate these values, and where I fall short, I will pray for wisdom that only God can provide.

I promise to help you navigate and overcome the desire to stomp your foot to get your point across, so I will pray for patience while I’m helping.

I promise to show you how to be firm in your opinion while showing love and respect for others, so I will pray for compassion while teaching you.

I promise to help you find the truth to every situation, and, if necessary, help you learn to be an advocate for others who are not as confident, so I will pray for truth and guidance in all situations.

Because being strong-willed, is not necessarily a bad thing, when sticking up for the truth. But right now, little one, I am your truth. I am your right and wrong, and I will do my absolute best to help you understand that and make it your own, while teaching you to not stomp your foot.

Jude Fullard

I’m a stay at home mum raising two adventurous kids in beautiful New Zealand, with the help of my amazing husband Luke. I enjoy the summer sunshine, being outdoors, reading and writing. I love spending quality time with people and my passion is to encourage everyone to dream big with God, find out who He created them to be and then live life. You can connect with me on Instagram, Facebook or visit my shop on Etsy.