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Tuesday
Jan092018

TWO DOLLARS, TWO CHILDREN, AND LOTS OF EMUNA

By Moran Kurs

Devorah Leah Kriaf of Beer Sheva got married seven and a half years ago.

“Thank G-d, we have a five-and-a-half-year-old daughter and adorable twins. Nothing is a given; we need to thank G-d for every second.” This is how Devorah Leah begins her story which she shares because the Rebbe said to publicize miracles in order to hasten the Geula.

DOLLAR #1

It all began when their first child was growing up and they wanted more children. “We prayed so much but still had no new good news.” They went the medical route and during the treatments they received endless brachos from the Rebbe, “bracha v’hatzlacha,” “may you relate good news.”

When their nephew was celebrating his upsheren, they went to Miron to the gravesite of Rabi Shimon bar Yochai.

“My husband emotionally told me that after he prayed at the grave, he promised that if we had a son within the year, we would name him Shimon. I immediately agreed.

“A short while later, while I was arranging a Yud-Tes Kislev farbrengen, I told my husband that I greatly desired a dollar from the Rebbe. At the farbrengen, when the sale of a dollar began, I knew that this dollar would be mine! I wasn’t going to forgo it, no matter what! And I got it.

“When I went over to get it, Devorie Sapir, the one who runs N’shei U’Bnos Chabad in Beer Sheva, asked me what bracha I wanted and when I said, a child, the hundreds of ladies said a thunderous, ‘amen.’ I felt and knew right away that this prayer was accepted in Heaven and I would have good news.”

DOLLAR #2

She went home and excitedly showed the dollar to her husband. They framed it and when they went to hang it on the wall they noticed that someone had written on it that it had been given on Sukkos 5746.

A week later, her husband attended a gathering for the organization “Mamosh” in B’nei Brak. He brought back another dollar from the Rebbe! “I was so excited!” remembers Devorah Leah. “I said to my husband, ‘You see? We have two dollars, two brachos!’ We will have a boy and a girl, a son – thanks to the dollar you got at Mamosh, and a daughter – thanks to the dollar I got at N’shei U’Bnos Chabad!’”

GOING OUT WITH JOY

Soon after, they started a complicated treatment which required extensive testing and a lot of commitment.

As part of the treatment, they waited one Friday for a critical phone call from a doctor who would guide them as to the dosage and exact time for the treatment.

“I waited an hour, two hours, three … and it was almost Shabbos. What should we do?” I wondered helplessly.

“Despairing thoughts began to worm their way into my heart, ‘We are about to lose out on the treatment that we pinned so much of our hopes on …’ If we missed this opportunity, it would have meant having to repeat the entire process – mobilizing additional inner resolve, money, tests, and difficult treatments.

“I called to see what was going on, but nobody answered. I tried again and again; it was so hard to give up after so much effort had been invested!”

She lit Shabbos candles and then, the phone rang. It was the doctor calling, but it was Shabbos! The phone fell silent along with her hopes.

Her husband returned from shul and heard that the doctor called.

“Maybe we should get a goy,” he suggested. “This is a matter involving new life …”

It seemed like they were one step away from turning their day of Shabbos into a day of sorrow.

“No,” she said firmly. “Hashem wants us to be happy now. Let’s make kiddush joyously!”

Her husband got caught up in her mood and overcame the creeping sadness, picked up their daughter and danced with her to “Shalom Aleichem.” The couple rose above all their gloomy thoughts.

“While making kiddush, we heard knocking. To our great surprise, it was the doctor himself. We were stunned! He said, ‘I realized that you did not answer the phone because of Shabbos, so I came here to tell you the dosage of the medication.’

“The treatment worked. After two and a half years of exhausting treatments and many disappointments, I was expecting twins, a son and daughter.”

DESPITE THE ODDS

But that’s not the end of the story. As hard as it was to get to this point, it was even harder to sustain the pregnancy. The doctors discovered serious problems, as a result of which she had to be hospitalized immediately, on 18 Tammuz. The doctors insisted she remain in the hospital until she gave birth, if she could manage to hold out long enough.

As soon as she arrived, they took her to the birthing room. “It seems they thought I had not properly understood the situation and wanted a neonatal doctor to explain how hopeless this pregnancy was, how the fetuses were not sustainable, and there were many dangers and defects that could develop. It was his job to explain the reality to me and to get me to stop listening to my imagination.

“But I was confident and insistent, ‘There is no problem! I have a blessing from the Rebbe!’ I believed I would give birth on Sukkos. After all, the Rebbe had blessed me so many times! Of course I would have more children! It just had to happen.

“The hospitalization was difficult; two months in which I was not allowed out of bed. The wonderful women from the Shira and Puah organization visited every day and provided food.”

THE REBBE’S PROTECTION

“Every so often they tried to move me to a different hospital since the neonatal unit in Soroka, where I was, was full. But it was only after week 30, when my mother wrote to the Rebbe and the Rebbe’s answer was, ‘be in a place of G-d fearing people and ensure the kashrus of food even for little children,’ that I was taken by ambulance to Laniado hospital.

“After a month there, I gave birth within an hour, in a normal birth, to healthy twins. This was against all the doctors’ predictions! Of course, we named our son Shimon (Shimi) and in thanks to the Rebbe, we named our daughter Chaya Mushka.

“Boruch Hashem, they were in the neonatal unit only one week! Since they were born relatively large, about 2 kilograms each, they did not need any medical intervention. This was another miracle on top of the miracle of their birth. The amazing thing was that we returned home Erev Sukkos, the date that was written on the dollar from the Rebbe that I got from N’shei U’Bnos Chabad.”

When she noticed this, she immediately asked her husband to take out and turn over the dollar that he got and look at the date written on it. Incredibly, the date was 18 Tammuz, the date she was hospitalized.

“The two dollars had the dates that I entered and left the hospital. Those were three months in which the Rebbe protected, guarded and saved me and my babies!”

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