“Bring your husband to the hospital,” the doctor said after I told him Adam was having trouble walking because his feet were numb. Looking out the window in my small kitchen, I gripped the phone. “Dr. S., a neurologist, will meet you in the emergency room.”

AdamI tried to put all of my fears aside walked to the car with my help. When we arrived at the ER, they assisted him into a wheelchair and brought him to where the doctor was waiting.

He said: “Adam has Guillain-Barrésyndrome, a type of paralysis. We’ll keep him here and give him tests to see what else if anything else is going on. Meanwhile, if he stops breathing, we will know how to take care of him.”

Walking out into the dark alone, I tried to put all of my fears aside. A new driver, it was the first time I had to drive in the dark. I had no choice. At least I waited to cry until I arrived home.

There, I had to bravely tell my two children that their father had to stay in the hospital for awhile. After my parents went home, I cried myself to sleep.

The next day, leaving the children with my mother, I picked up the bills from the hall table and brought them with me to the hospital. Adam had always taken care of all the bills; I didn’t know how to handle them. Now was a good time for him to teach me.

Sitting up in bed, Adam smiled when he saw me. I helped him eat since his hands were also numb.

Dr. S. came and explained that this syndrome is a type of paralysis that progresses until it stops progressing. Then, he would start the recovery process.

Happy with what the doctor said (or at least, pretending to be happy), I helped Adam eat and then showed him the bills. He told me what to write on each check and gave me other tips for handling the things he had always done. I could see that it made him feel useful.

Once I got home, I paced the floor, wondering how I would be able to care for myself and the children despite what the future might hold for us. After the children were asleep that night, I sat in our living room, the one that recently held a surprise 30th birthday party for Adam. How happy Adam had been that day!

After the party, my son David came to me and said: “I didn’t tell.”

I hugged him. “I am so proud of you,” I replied.

How content we were with our little ranch house with its apple trees in the backyard. Apples from our own tree . . . we picked some to make my Bubby’s apple cake, as if we were in our own Garden of Eden.

I remembered Bubby’s favorite expression, “With G‑d’s help, everything will be good.”

For the next few days, Mom brought kosher food, which I took with me to the hospital. Maybe if Adam has something good to eat, he will feel better. Although he ate better with my help, the syndrome progressed.

Dr. S. explained: “I talked with neurologists all over the country, and there is no consensus on what to do.”

At the same time, he reassured us (almost too much, in my opinion) that no one dies from this.

That night after the children were asleep, I paced the rooms and noticed Adam’s tefillin on his bedroom dresser, along with his siddur (prayerbook). The next morning, I carried the tefillin with me to the hospital. Adam was not in his room; he was undergoing more tests. When he returned, I showed him his tefillin.

He smiled and said, “Ask our rabbi to help me.”

I had forgotten to tell our rabbi that Adam was in the hospital.

That night, David, just 6 years old, had trouble falling asleep. “Dad will be alright,” I reassured him. “I’ll call you from the hospital when you’re home from school, and you can talk to him.”

MyAdam was not in his room; he ws undergoing more tests daughter, only 3, cried every day, holding onto my mom’s hand as I left the house.

A few days later, the doctors decided Adam had turned the corner. The syndrome had stopped progressing. Now the recovery would begin. Only time would tell how much he would recover.

During Adam’s last day at the hospital, when the rabbi again came to visit, I stepped outside the room to get a cup of coffee. Dr. S. came over to me, saying: “I never saw anyone help someone recover as much as I can see what you are doing for Adam. Who helped you?” he asked.

“I thought of everything myself,” I answered. “No one helped me.”

Then I turned and saw the rabbi help Adam pray. He prayed for just a short time, but there was a real connection being forged.

I did not do this alone. Bubby was right. We did have help.