“Our baby was but one year old when our older daughter kicked her in the head. It was an accident, of course, but about a week later, her eyes were not acting correctly. Naomi Sarah’s grandpa is an eye doctor and recommended that we see a colleague of his in Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.The neuro-ophthalmologist recommended that she have an MRI and the results showed cancerous cells impeding our daughter’s eye movements. Naomi Sarah was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, a cancerous condition that developed in utero, and continued to grow over the past year!
She began her treatment at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, the premier medical center for neuroblastoma. Our daughter’s health became a full-time job and my wife and I could not work. We were suddenly faced with both an economic and medical emergency. How would we pay for our daughter’s, hopefully, life-saving care?
Somehow, Hashgacha led us to RCCS, the Rofeh Cholim Cancer Society, who, throughout the next few years of tortuous treatments, became our “messenger” from G-d. They paid for our upgraded medical insurance and, to this day, we have not had to pay one penny for our daughter’s care. But I am getting ahead of myself. The above-mentioned treatments included many rounds of debilitating chemotherapy transfusions. I shudder to tell you the effects that the subsequent stem-cell transplant had on her. It was heart wrenching to watch her suffer. But we prayed, and we actually saw improvement. After a few months, the doctors told us
she seemed to be in remission! Medical bills arrived in the millions of dollars, of which the insurance company paid in full.
But the good news was short-lived. The disease resurfaced and we were faced with the mind-boggling option of subjecting Naomi Sarah to radioisotope therapy, in which radiation is actually injected into her bloodstream in the hope it will attack the cancer wherever it would find it. With the help of HaShem, it seems that it did the job it was intended to do.
It is now almost four years since that ominous diagnosis was delivered, and the doctors tell us that all scans show she is cancer-free, be”h. Naomi goes to nursery school like any normal child. She is so special; when you look at her you would never know the torture that she lived through…and you would not know she is on experimental medication, given with the prayers that the disease will not surface a third time. So, in retrospect, a kick in the head was HaShem’s way of letting us know that we needed to take action. We did…and RCCS has been, and still is, with us every step of the way”.
The theme of today’s Matzav.com Featured Video, “I Believe in Miracles”, came as a result of so many former cancer patients expressing themselves as recipients of a miracle, funded and facilitated by RCCS. The recurrent theme of the song behind the video is a song of hope and a song of strength.Many of the great Rishonim (including the Ohr HaChayim hakadosh in Parshas B’shalach) have written how one’s acts of kindness can result in the creation of a “miracle”. We are taught time and time again never to give up hope, even if a “sharp sword is resting upon one’s throat”. And that is the story of the song, and that is the story of the video, and that is the story of RCCS.
Avrohom Fried, Yossi Green, Yisroel Lamm, and other stars in the world of Jewish music donated their unique talents to produce a theme song to benefit the many hundreds of cancer patients being assisted by RCCS, the Rofeh Cholim Cancer Society.Yossi Green, one of the leading composers in contemporary Jewish music was inspired to compose the song as a result of his first-hand knowledge of the accomplishments of RCCS. When Avrohom Fried (arguably the leading singer in the Chassidic music field, today) heard the song, he readily agreed to take part in this Chessed undertaking. And for those who know Yisroel Lamm, it is easy to guess that he immediately agreed to arrange and conduct the music.
The result is obvious to anyone with a discerning ear. According to Yossi Green, this song may go down as one of the greatest in Avrohom Fried’s longstanding history of great hits. A Yiddish version, entitled “Rachamim” and sung by Shloime Daskal, was recently recorded and is expected to be released shortly.Anyone can download the song behind the video by donating a minimum of $1.80 to RCCS; please go to:www.rccscancer.org