Over the last month and a half I have spent almost every night, weekend, and part of the holiday by my son’s bedside in the hospital.
My son is a disabled child and is 17. He has been sick with pneumonia for the last couple of weeks, before the holiday of Passover. I tried to come as much as I could, and I slept with him at night till right before the holiday.
The doctors tried many different types of antibiotics to heal him from his sick bed. But they said that nothing is working. People kept telling me it’s time to face the reality that special needs children don’t always get better because of their great disabilities and their dysfunctional bodies. However, I did not want to listen or believe anybody regarding my disabled son.
I explained to anybody and everybody I talk to that I’ve been holding on to this faith for the last 14 and a 1/2 years, since he became so disabled, and I’m not going to let it go now. My son will get better I kept telling myself. During the time spent caring for my child, it was on one specific night that I felt I lost my faith.
I started to cry and felt all the negative thoughts I was hearing over the last couple of week’s seep into my mind and make me feel as if this was the end. As I was crying I picked up the phone and called my daughter, I told her that I think I stopped believing and once again I started to cry.
I heard her voice, “Mom, you can never lose your faith. Your son is alive all these years thanks to your faith and you can’t stop believing at this point.”
I found myself battling with my faith and crying beside his bed waiting for a speedy recovery but almost not believing that it could really be true.
The days and nights came and went and the situation was not changing and all along people’s voices echoing in my mind; you know these children, once they get sick they never get better, start facing the fact that it’s time for him to move on and you have to move on as well.
I kept repeating. no I’ve been holding on for 14 and a 1/2 years, I’ll keep holding on with my faith till he gets better. I know he’ll get better. My family and friends kept urging me to go home and get a good night sleep, but I said I must stay by his side every night. He must recover.
Last Shabbat I saw he was not getting any better and a weak moment took over my thoughts and I started to cry. I went over to my son and said to him “we have a deal remember? I take care of you till you get better and when I’m done taking care of you that means it’s time to get better. You can’t leave me, we have a deal – you have to get strong so we can both live on.
This past Shabbat I told my son that if he was feeling better we would be able to go downstairs and join the rest of the people for the beautiful Shabbat prayer and then we will be able to sit in the dining room together with all the other people who are waiting for a speedy recovery and spend about two hours outside.
The doctors came into his room and did not believe how good my son looked. He was getting better. I was able to take him to the beautiful shul, and we even went outside for awhile.
I look back at the month plus that I spent and ask myself what made me keep believing? The answer to that is my faith, except for that brief moment, I never stopped believing no matter what people said to me. I never stopped dreaming of my son’s recovery. When you cry about things, you realize that success in life is the faith we have in one another and the faith we have that there’s a bigger picture. Never give up. Tell the story of your life the way you want to see it, not the way people want you to see it. Never give up believing, never give up dreaming. My son is doing so much better and tomorrow he will be going home after a month and a half of complete uncertainty. Thank you Hashem, for sending me the strength to never stop believing.