"L et me get this straight,” Mindy said. “You had one episode when you were pregnant with Danny.”

“Right.”

“Then you had one episode when you were pregnant with Eli.”

“Right.”

“And in this pregnancy you already had three episodes.”

“Come on up and claim your prize.”

“But…” Mindy paused. “The first three episodes didn’t respond to meds. The episode at your parents did respond to meds. Then the episode at my house converted without meds. So, the sixty-four-million-dollar question is: Is it getting better or worse?”

How helpless are you, Human; you know nothing, can do nothing. I’m here. I can do anything. I can make it better, I can make it worse, and you can’t even determine which is which.

I’m here, I can do anything.

Which was a very comforting reminder, two weeks before I was due.

It was 2 p.m. when we left to the hospital. There are six other days in the week, but of course it would have to be Friday.

“I hope it’s not a bein hashmashos baby,” my husband muttered as we flew down the highway. We were going so fast, and I just wanted to slow down. He launched into a complicated analysis of the sh’eilos surrounding when the bris might be, clearly relishing the problem.

“Bein hashmashos is in seven hours,” I said. “It had better not be a bein hashmashos baby!”

Is there anyone more vulnerable than a woman in labor? I tried to control my anxiety as we walked into the hospital. The hospital, which had become the crucible. You could never know what might happen there. You could never know who you might become there.

The nurses in L&D were surprised to see me. “No one told us you were coming.”

People, making mistakes, again.

How do you measure spiritual growth? When you’re in the same place again, you can measure if your actions are the same.

I was in the same place again.

They started me on the IV, set up all the monitors.

It’s like sitting on a roller coaster, the wheels rolling slowly, that dread in the pit of your stomach, the fear of what’s coming, the knowledge that there’s no way to get off.

This was it.

I didn’t want to do it in fear. I wanted to do it with trust. The ride of my life.

I thought back to that first episode, when I had brushed it all off, then gone strutting off to a cardiologist, sure that I could fix things my way. Then the other episodes, the failed cardioversions, the prescription mistakes. Losing consciousness in the ER, and the fear that filled the space where my earlier confidence had been.

That had exploded the last fragment of self-illusion, and then there was nothing left but Hashem. I’m here. Could I go through this secure that everything’s under Control? (Excerpted from Family First, Issue 580)