Roller Coaster

I’m not much of a roller coaster rider. I’ve been on them, a select few, but I cannot stomach the 100 feet + drops or high speeds. It leaves me dizzy for hours.

These past few days we seem to be on roller coaster that has malfunctioned and won’t let us  OFF!  As I mentioned in yesterdays update the situation regarding Benny’s infection in the epidural site. B”H the infection is superficial, and not deep, however, the infection needs to drain. Without getting into details of how it is drained, yesterday a doctor from anesthesia drained it in our room. What we were told at the time, it was a common procedure and helps accelerate the healing process.

This morning we were abruptly woken by about 11 doctors from the surgical team coming in the room at once to examine Benny. They were pleased with the way Benny’s wound was healing. About an hour later the infectious disease doctor came in to examine Benny too. He was not pleased with what he called an “angry wound.”  Then came the oncology group, I think I counted 4 doctors. Then the resident came to check in , followed by the pain management team. Our primary oncologist came to discuss this new bump in the road or you can call it a roller coaster dive. Finally the doctor that performed Benny’s surgery came to look at the site. This surgeon was not happy with the wound either and said he is booking an OR within an hour to further drain and clean the site. So back to the OR we went. Just as we were leaving the original doctor who administered to epidural showed up as well.  Luckily Benny hadn’t eaten anything (not for lack of trying)  or we would have had to wait for hours for his stomach to empty out.

As we waited in the prep room, we were greeted by many familiar doctors and nurses all showing disbelief on their faces of what transpired. One after the other said they have never seen this occur. It was not comforting in the least. True everything is from Hashem (G-D) and everything happens for a reason, it is difficult when possibly dealing with human error.  B”H the surgeon did what he needed to do in a short time, even though no time is short when their child is in an operating room.

…And so, here we are here in the hospital for the time being, no sense yet of when the roller coaster will be over. Once the infection heals with the help of G-D very soon, we start round 5 of chemo (generally 4 days).

I will end with a short video clip of Benny winning over the hearts of all the nurses as he is carried into the OR. His smile and laughter were contagious throughout the OR. Oddly enough it was the first time we were smiling all day!

Click on video: IMG_2574

2 thoughts on “Roller Coaster

  1. Reb Ari and Faigie,

    Besuros Tovos, Refuos, VeYeshuous in this holy month of Menachem Av. Today is the Yartzeit of the Holy Arizal – which should hopefully shower upon Benny and the entire family great refuos, hatzlacha, simcha, and bracha.

    I have not been in contact with you since Benny took ill, but I have been following the updates especially with my sister reminding me. Your blogs are truly inspirational – and a great lesson to all of us. Your emunah, bitachon, and overall outlook as portrayed by your comments are extremely powerful and touching. May Hashem see your efforts and repay them by turning days of sorrow into simcha, days of anguish into celebration – and the days of klal yisrael’s mourning into a yom tov – speedily in our days.

    I wanted to point you to the last piece in the sefer Aish Kodesh, by the Holy Piacezna Rebbe, HYD – who wrote this entire work while in the Gehinnom called the Warsaw Ghetto. It is on this week’s Parsha – Shabbos Chazon. It is a small but very powerful piece – and one that I believe you can open up the gates of heaven with – if you beseech Hashem with his comments in mind.

    It is Kdai to see inside – and I am happy to scan it and send it to you – but briefly the Rebbe asks why do we call this Shabbos: Shabbos Chazon? Yes its the name of the Haftorah – but we don’t call every Shabbos a name by the first word of the Haftorah. (Its not like Shabbos Nachamu or Shuva – that have a meaning – comfort or repentance). What message does the word Chazon impart? Chazon just means a vision – a prophecy.

    He explains based on a medrash in Shir HaShirim that Chazon is the most poignant of prophecy – the most vivid and real experience of a futuristic prophecy. To actually visualize the happenings in the future carry with it the highest degree of prophecy. Other prophecies were related to prophets by hearing voices/words – this prophecy – the one of the destruction of the Temple – was not merely told to Yeshaya HaNavi but shown to him – in all of its tragic detail.

    He then explains how different it is – to hear or read about suffering from actually seeing or experiencing it. In prewar times – he recalls mourning over the destruction of the Temple, and at times crying about the suffering and pain he read about in Eicha and the Kinos. In fact, he writes even in the beginning of the war – when he heard about others suffering he “empathized” with them. But now (in 1942) when he saw and experienced the suffering himself, he realized how his imagination was not even an iota of seeing it in real life.

    But there is hope.

    He explains a pasuk in Shmos in a truly powerful way. The pasuk says that Hashem saw the suffering of the Jewish people, and decided to redeem us because he knew our pain. He asks why does the pasuk say that Hashem knew our pain? Of course – if he saw our suffering – he knew our pain.

    He explains with a parable – While a parent might understand that a surgical procedure is for the good of their child – it is inhumane for them to see the child being cut. For at the time of incision – the parent can only focus on what they see – their child being hurt… at that time – there isn’t any feelings of well its for the good of the child – there is only pain.

    When G-d in heaven – our parent – saw the suffering – then even though he knew it was somehow for the good of the Jewish people – all he can focus on was our pain. He couldn’t bear to watch anymore and commanded Moshe to go take the Jews out of Egypt – and then began the path to redemption!

    Shabbos Chazon is a time where we beg Hashem – please look at our suffering – see what we are going through. Even though, You in heaven know that it is all for our good… focus your eyes on the pain – and realize that even You should not be able to bear this anymore. This is why it is called Shabbos Chazon.

    The Haftara ends with ultimate redemption – and we too pray that in the month of Menachem Av – that the ultimate Father in heaven be comforted with the eradication of all sickness, of all tears.

    May it be His will that your Binyamin Chayim grow up to be the talmid chacham and tzadik that will illuminate the world with his kochos and may you only see simcha from your entire mishpacha.

    With a broken heart,

  2. what a precious and adorable child, faigee, KAH. im wishing and davening for his Refuah Sheleimah bekarov. thinking about you often, Shayna

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