What love can do

Lydia - happyboy

The odds were stacked against Robert from day one. During childbirth, he was deprived of oxygen for over 30 minutes, which caused profound brain damage.

Doctors had only dire predictions: he would never be able to show any emotion, speak or walk. They said he would probably no survive past his first birthday.

But God said, “Be still and know that I am God.”

Robert’s biological mom abandoned him. When Robert was two months old, he was placed with Edie Aardsma, a long-time Safe Families volunteer. Edie ignored the doomsday predictions. She prayed daily, that he would be happy and know he was loved. 

Robert, now five years old, has had many seizures and breathing issues. Doctors said he would probably not survive, and once again, God said, “Yes, I have plans to prosper you and not harm you…to give you hope and a future… I am the Great Physician.”

Today, Edie is Robert’s legal guardian, providing round the clock care for a little boy she describes as "perfect just the way he is."

The road has not been easy from a medical standpoint. Robert has spent more than 250 days in the hospital. He’s undergone 14 surgeries and has a permanent tracheostomy (breathing tube). He can’t eat or speak, he doesn’t see very well. And he can’t move his arms or legs.

But despite all that, Robert is a joy, says Edie, with a smile that lights up the room…a smile that assures her that God is carrying out His plans in Robert’s life. He loves to snuggle, listen to books and spend time with his many visitors, which include other Safe Families kids.

Today, Robert’s doctors and nurses — many of whom gave up on him as a baby — see a happy little boy with a lot of personalities. They now understand that although Robert can’t do much, he enjoys life and has a lot to give.

During one recent hospitalization, a physician approached Edie with tears in her eyes. “I was there when Robert was hospitalized at 6 months old,” she said. “I didn’t think he would pull through. I want to apologize—I will never again underestimate what love can do.”

Edie says that Robert is living proof of God’s power.

“You just can’t help but fall in love with Robert,” she says. “Nobody looks at him and says, ‘poor baby,’ they say ‘that little boy is amazing!’ I’m so thankful to be his mommy, and my prayer is that God will continue to use Robert for His glory.”

Emily Peilan

Squarespace Web Designer | Creating stylish, chic and modern websites that convert for the Creative Entrepreneur and Small Businesses. 


Looking Back on Three Years at LYDIA


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