This piece was first published in The Times of Israel.
Rabbi Charles Sherman’s son Eyal was four years old in 1986 when doctors discovered he had a dangerous legion on his brainstem. Surgery to remove the tumor caused a massive stroke, and Eyal became a quadriplegic. He would never be able to walk, talk, feed or breathe on his own, although his brain and intellect remain intact.
Eyal, who is now 32, became trapped inside his own body.
Sherman, who has served for many years as the spiritual leader of the Conservative Temple Adath Yeshurun in Syracuse, New York, had long wanted to write a book about his and his family’s experience, but it was not until recently that he found the right way to tell it.
On the advice of a literary agent, Sherman decided to shape his story in a way that could help other people facing challenges in life, no matter how similar or different from the ones faced by Sherman and his family. “The Broken and The Whole: Discovering Joy After Heartbreak” was recently published by Scribner.
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© 2014 Renee Ghert-Zand. All rights reserved.