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My New Year Delivery

Doreen Doreen Karni with her son Raanan

 We were devastated to learn that our dear friend and miracle-working doctor, Teddy Edelstein had passed away.

In 1976, Dr. Hymie Goldblatt suggested that I go and discuss my sad history with the new gynecologist in Haifa – Teddy Edelstein. After 12 miscarriages in 15 years, it would be a challenge for my husband and me, and for Dr. Teddy Edelstein.

This small man was a bundle of energy, positive thinking and positive action. He was sure we were going to succeed. So... I became pregnant for the 13th time. With daily injections for 12 weeks and lots of ups and downs I stayed pregnant.

When Teddy had to go back to South Africa to visit an ailing aunt, he made arrangements for me to go across the road to a colleague of his to check the baby's heartbeat daily!

As the months went by Teddy told me over and over again, "All will be well". Recently I heard that he would then go over to see Hymie to have a stiff whisky and would say: "She's not going to make it."

September 2: I was hospitalized and Teddy sat up all night to stop my contractions. I spent six weeks on my back in hospital and he came every day. "You ARE going to make it!,'" he said. "This time you will make it."

September 25: another month to go. First Day Rosh Hashanah, I went into labor. Teddy, Hymie, Dr. Jesmond Berkhan, anaesthesiologist, Matron Esther, of the hospital all sat together in the Reali School where the Moriah congregation gathered for the High Holy days.

The plan was that Doron, Teddy's son, would stay at home to wait for the hospital to phone and then he would run to the synagogue and the "team" would leave for the hospital. Reuven, my husband, was singing the Haftarah. As he finished Doron came dashing in and Reuven and "the team" filed out as quickly as they could. All 500 congregants knew exactly why!

Teddy walked into the ward and I was having contractions every minute. In his inimitable way he commanded me, "you will stop having contractions NOW, till you come to the theater – not one contraction more". And he left and I stopped!

We met in the theater – the whole team. I saw him and I saw the big clock on the wall. 2pm. The time of the birth of our son, Raanan, 2:09pm. It took him 9 minutes.

That evening at 8:30pm the ward door opened to a very groggy me and in comes Teddy with his Rosh Hashanah dinner in his hand. "I can't eat at home, the phone doesn't stop ringing to know how Teddy's baby is, and congratulating me." He said: "You made it; I told you so."

My love and admiration for Teddy grew and grew over the years. He was dynamic, he was a wonderful doctor, friend, husband and father.

We will miss him forever, May he rest in peace

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