A short while ago, two young women who are part of my family, were lying in hospital beds in different cities in Israel. My daughter-in-law was in active labor with her first child. She is a relatively new olah, having moved to Israel on her own where she met and married my son. Her mother was not able to be with her during labor, so I was asked to accompany the young couple through the birthing process.
In Petach Tikvah, my niece lay in a ward which specialized in liver problems. She and her family had also made aliyah a few short years ago. She has, b”H, seven children and they were all waiting and praying for their mother to heal and be able to return home.
At one point, when things were relatively quiet at our end, I went out into the hall and called my sister-in-law, who had recently flown to Israel to help her daughter and family through the challenging times ahead. While the two of us were updating each other as to the states of health of the two young women, her daughter asked for my daughter-in-law’s full name. She said she wanted to daven for an easy delivery and a healthy baby. As soon as I returned to the birthing room, my daughter-in-law asked me for my niece’s full name, so that she could daven for a complete refuah for her cousin.
My daughter-in-law went on to deliver a healthy baby boy, B”h, while my niece was being flown to France in the hope of getting a liver transplant. Two weeks after the birth of my grandson, the young family took what was meant to be a short drive to a nearby park on erev Shabbat. The small car they were driving was rear-ended by a bus. The car was totaled, with shattered glass covering the back seat, where the newborn sat ensconced in his new car seat. The young couple is still dealing with doctor appointments, pain and physical therapy appointments. Miraculously, the baby came out without a scratch, though some glass shards had to be brushed off his hat.
My niece underwent a successful liver transplant, b”H, and now has to deal with all that recovery entails: visits to the hospital, taking a cornucopia of pills daily and going back to the Petach Tikvah hospital for check-ups, plus a list of precautions she must diligently follow.
As it states in Bava Kama, 92a, he who prays for another when he himself is in need, has his prayers answered first. Thanks to the heartfelt tefillot said by each of the young women for the other one, they are both now home where they belong. Each family is planning to make a seudat hodaya to thank Hashem for answering their tefillot.