Faith over fear

Published 4:36 am Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Eighteen years ago my daughter, Melinda, delivered a lovely baby boy. Aidan Bryce was perfect. I breathed in that wonderful, new little person smell as I counted ten fingers and ten toes. And as an added bonus he had his mother’s beautiful olive complexion. “Watch out world!” I thought.

Something soon puzzled the doctors and a neonatologist was called in. I was in the room with Melinda when we heard the report.

“We have to do further testing, because there appears to be a problem. Aidan seems unable to suck.”

Something deep inside me rose up.

“There is nothing wrong with Aidan. He is only sleepy and probably has some meds in him from the cesarean delivery. Here, give him to me.”

With compassion for a grandmother who obviously would not face the reality of a problem with her grandson the doctor agreed. I unwrapped the baby’s blanket and proceeded to take off every stitch of clothes, even his diaper.

Next I said, “Now get a towel and wet it with cold water.”

I’m sure they wondered exactly what grandma was planning, but decided to hear me out. I took the cold, wet towel and wrapped that precious boy in it. He began to wail. I took his bottle; put it in his mouth, and he drank the whole thing.

The doctor looked dumbfounded and exclaimed that she would have to write this experience in a medical journal to share with other professionals. Aidan and I chuckle about this often.

There is no telling what would have happened if I had not listened to that still, small voice and stood firm. We could have given in to fear and accepted the bad report, but I knew my grandson was healthy.

Aidan has tried his hand at an array of things over the relatively short span of his life. I remember his chubby stage when I tried unsuccessfully to get him outside and into more active pursuits on one of his visits to grandma’s house. He was much more interested in watching television or playing a video game than riding a bike or playing outside.

Thankfully, that has all changed. After a brief exploration of football he settled into his sport of choice, wrestling. He decided to go out for the wrestling team to stay in condition, but after a few weeks he was hooked. Upon realizing his studies, part time job, Jr. ROTC, church activities, and sports were demanding more than he could give, he stepped down from the football team. I know he was a little nervous at first because he didn’t want to disappoint anyone, but he realized the most important thing was to follow his heart.

After several years in Jr. ROTC Aidan decided to enter the armed forces after graduation. He will be sworn into the Navy and go on to boot camp at the end of this year. How quickly this babe in arms grew into a young man poised and ready to serve his country. Once again, we choose faith over fear and know that Aidan is in God’s hands.

Jan Penton Miller can be reached at