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Miracle Mom

Sara Miriam Gross

Sharon Lobaton spent 27 years waiting, praying, hoping for a child. At the age of 52, she received the ultimate consolation. After sowing with tears, she finally reaped the joyous dividends — her newborn son, cradled in her arms.

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Small bouquets of delicate silk flowers hang from the front door. I press the buzzer and enter Sharon Lobaton’s airy apartment. It is decorated with lacy pillows, embroidered floral motifs, and no fewer than three bright light fixtures. There is no room for darkness in the Lobaton home.

Sharon Lobaton of Beitar Illit is the author of Deeper Than Tears, a riveting first-person account of 25 years of infertility treatments, segulos, prayers, and faith. Sharon, who penned the book under the byline Sharon O.L., was certain that the 573-page journal of her quest for motherhood was not over. She was so certain, in fact, that she promised a sequel, writing Part 1 on the inside cover.

“Several tzaddikim promised us that we would have a child,” Sharon explains, “including HaRav Ben Zion Abba Shaul ztz”l, HaRav Moshe Shapiro ybl’’c, and HaRav Yoram Abergel. In fact, as early as one or two years after we married, HaRav Avraham Yechiel Fish ztz”l told us we would be blessed with a son.”

The rabbinical authorities and the medical authorities did not see eye to eye. “The doctors couldn’t say it was impossible. They could only say ‘We can’t know,’ yet they led me to understand that if I had a chance to have a baby, it was a very slim chance. In my mind though, I was a person who had children, it was just that the right time hadn’t come yet.”

Despite her determination to steer clear of discouraging fears, Sharonwas worried about a possible chillul Hashem. “I had been so excited when I received those blessings that I told my family, who are not as religious as we are, and I also told friends,” she relates. “Because of that, my tefillah eventually became, ‘Hashem, even if You have decided not to give me children, there are people who are asking, “But your rabbis promised you. What happened to their promises?” Please give us a child for the sake of Your Name, so there will not be any chillul Hashem.’ ” Sharon is quick to deflect credit for this compelling argument. “I didn’t come to it through lomdus. I just really meant it. I didn’t want a chillul Hashem.”

 

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