Books

Miracles We Have Seen –  America’s Leading Physicians Share Stories They Can’t Forget

(HCI Books, 2016)

The stories in this book, written by leading physicians across the country, recount spectacular serendipities, impossible cures, breathtaking resuscitations, extraordinary awakenings, and recovery from unimaginable disasters. Still other essays tell of physicians’ experiences in which the miracle was more emotional than physical, yet also left a lasting imprint. Despite being at the forefront of medicine and science, what we don’t understand as physicians often exceeds what we do understand. And even when we think we understand, we are frequently proven wrong. This is a book about optimism and inspiration, and the realization that what we don’t know or don’t understand isn‘t necessarily cause for fear, and can even be reason for hope.

 

“As a witness to one of the miracles recounted in this uplifting book, I welcome Dr. Rotbart’s extraordinary collection of compelling testimonies from leading physicians. Take a look, and have your faith in God – and in his agents of healing, doctors – renewed!”

–Timothy Michael Cardinal Dolan, Archbishop of New York

“We read so many accounts of freak accidents and rare diseases bringing misery into the lives of people who deserve better. That is why it was so refreshing, so soul-restoring to read these accounts of near tragedies that were prevented by human efforts, good will, and caring.”

—Rabbi Harold Kushner, author of When Bad Things Happen to Good People and Nine Essential Things I’ve Learned About Life

“In an age of technology and indifference, these remarkable essays inspire wonder, awe, and a sense of pride of being human. They demonstrate that the miracle of miracles is that they do happen when health professionals combine their medical skills with unrelenting devotion to the art of healing.”

―Bernard Lown, MD, Nobel Peace Prize recipient on behalf of the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War; Emeritus Professor of Medicine, Harvard School of Public Health; Emeritus Senior Medical Attending, Brigham and Women’s Hospital; Founder of Physicians for Social Responsibility

“The remarkable stories from Miracles We Have Seen will stay with you long after you have put the book down. You will be moved to tears and share in the joy, and sometimes sorrow, experienced by the dedicated doctors who deal with life-and-death issues every day. Modern medicine goes far beyond technology; it is the human factor and the personal relationships that make all the difference. The resilience of the patients, the determination of the doctors and their medical teams, and the serendipitous timing of events that can unexpectedly change an outcome will leave you with a sense of awe and optimism.”

Jack Canfield, co-creator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series, and creator of The Success Principles Series

“A beautifully written collection from physicians witnessing the mystery and power of the human body and spirit in the most extreme circumstances. This is a unique contribution that will inspire and edify.”

―Jerome Groopman, MD, Recanati Professor, Harvard Medical School, New Yorker staff writer, and co-author with Dr. Pamela Hartzband of the New York Times bestsellerYour Medical Mind: How to Decide What Is Right for You

“Miracles We Have Seen opens a window into the complex world of the art and the science of medicine for all to see the compassionate miracles dispensed there. Take a good look . . . you will be inspired!”

—Richard Carmona, MD, MPH, FACS, 17th Surgeon General of the United States

“These stories are remarkable–surprising, inspiring, and full of joy and awe. The voices of these doctors remind us–as they remind themselves–of how much we have to learn from the people we care for, and of the importance of acknowledging the elements of good luck, science, care, coincidence, and wonder.”

–Perri Klass, MD, Professor of Journalism and Pediatrics, Director, Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute, New York University

“Doctors tell the human side of medicine in these stories―revealing the heart and soul that go into truly ‘caring’ care.”

―Jimmie C. Holland, MD, Wayne E. Chapman Chair in Psychiatric Oncology, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, author of The Human Side of Cancer: Living with Hope, Coping with Uncertainty

“These stories by doctors who are true healers have moved me to tears and opened my heart. Each, like the great doctor-writer Chekhov, brings to medicine a sense of compassion, deep vulnerability, love and hope for those who suffer, and the ability to acknowledge that human life is a precious gift.”

–Ruth Behar, author of Traveling Heavy: A Memoir in between Journeys and the Victor Haim Perera Collegiate Professor of Anthropology, University of Michigan

 “Miracles are all around, we just need to pause and be still, and recognise them. This book is a testament to the medical miracles that happen every day when skill, science and spirituality meet.”

–Rev Mpho A Tutu van Furth, Executive Director, Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation; Co-Author, with Archbishop Desmond Tutu, of Made for Goodness

“This is one of the best books I have ever read. The stories in this book will make you want to cry, cheer, embrace, pause and reflect on the miracles that occur each and every day.  What a wonderful gift to all of us, captured in this timeless treasure.”

–Michelle B. Riba, M.D., M.S., Past President, American Psychiatric Association; Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Michigan; Director, PsychOncology Program, University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center

 

“Deeply moving and eloquently written, this remarkable collection reminds us how the art and science of medicine intersect with good luck, coincidence, and the unfathomable. For physicians, these essays call to mind our own stories that inspired us toward the healing of our patients.”

—Jeremy A. Lazarus, MD, past President, American Medical Association

 

The art of medicine involves empathy and communicating with families in a very personal way. The science of medicine requires understanding how evidence from well-designed research transforms patient care. The vignettes in this book are at the interface between the art and science. They touch our human spirit in such a profound and inspirational way. This remarkable book shows the humility with which medicine should be practiced and how fortunate physicians are to have such meaningful experiences.

–Stephen Berman, MD Past President, American Academy of Pediatrics; Director, Center for Global Health, Colorado School of Public Health; Professor, University of Colorado School of Medicine and School of Public Health

 

“These fascinating and inspiring stories reinforce the remarkable things that medical care can do, as well as what is out of our control as clinicians.  They remind us of the limits of our knowledge, just as they keep us in awe of the unpredictability of human illness and health.”

–Steven E. Weinberger, MD Executive Vice President and CEO, American College of Physicians

 

“These powerful and true stories by physicians offer hope from where faith intersects with science and real healing begins.”

–Jeffrey J. Cain MD, Past President, American Academy of Family Physicians

 

“The drive to understand cause and effect is central to human nature. But so, too, is awe in the face of mystery, fate, and the ineffable. The kaleidoscopic collection of stories that fills this volume evokes such awe. Miracles of life and death viewed through the lens of medical science make our lives richer for all that cannot be explained, for the wonder of that which is just beyond our grasp.”

–Larry Kramer President, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, Former Dean, Stanford Law School.

 

A remarkable volume of essays detailing prolonged effort and novel therapies leading to miraculous outcomes. Empathic care, co-produced by extraordinary teams of medical professionals, their patients and families. Every page speaks “gratitude.” These stories will contribute powerfully to cures, and equally to cures of burn-out and despair.

–Richard I. Levin MD, President and CEO, The Arnold P. Gold Foundation; Emeritus Professor of Medicine, New York and McGill Universities

 

The glory of medicine is the hope and inspiration that it provides to all, to save lives, to preserve spirits, to truly help humanity.  This book captures the individual spirits of the families and the physicians.   We devote ourselves to the families impacted by diseases and tragedy, and feel everlasting gratitude to the physicians providing care at the most difficult of times.  This motivating book lifts all of our spirits.  It gives examples of adversity, and then instills faith and a sense of triumph.  The human spirit truly prevails.

–Jeanne A Conry, MD, PhD Past President, The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists; Assistant Physician in Chief, The Permanente Medical Group

 

“At a time when the labor of the ideal physician is described as routinized and industrialized—standard work leading to standard outcomes—these stories inspire. These wise physicians remind us that we are at our best when we are open to the surprises, the graces, and, even, the miracles which occur when we are present for the ill.”

–Abraham M. Nussbaum, MD, MTS, author of, The Finest Traditions of My Calling: One Physician’s Search for the Renewal of Medicine; Chief Education Officer, Denver Health Associate Director of Medical Education, Department of Psychiatry, University of Colorado

 

“To practice medicine means that we physicians keep trying to get better. The leading edge for new treatment approaches sometimes emerges from collections of inspiring case reports like these.  Let us integrate the mysterious into medical scientific thinking by acknowledging that we are all part of a greater consciousness and that serendipity and synchronicity can highlight the way.”

—Bernard Beitman, MD, author of Connecting with Coincidence; Visiting Professor, University of Virginia; former Chair, Department of Psychiatry, University of Missouri-Columbia.

 

“For patients, their families, and all the rest of us, Miracles We Have Seen is a welcome reminder that even the most dire diagnoses can have happy endings, thanks to the inspiring dedication of doctors.”

—Diane Debrovner, Deputy Editor, Parents Magazine.

 

940_cover940 Saturdays 

There are 940 Saturdays between a child’s birth and the day he or she turns 18

(Potter Style/Random House, 2014).


That may sound like a lot when there are adventures to plan and hours to fill. But as your child learns to walk, ride a bicycle, and drive, the years pass quickly. This beautiful package includes both a removable booklet with a thousand ideas for family activities that you and your child will love at every age, and a keepsake journal for preserving what you saw and did, thought and felt, so you can savor these memories in the years to come.

 

“Cherishing childhood. From the day your child is born to the moment she turns 18, you have less than a thousand Saturdays together… Harley Rotbart, M.D., suggests activities to make the most of these fleeting moments in his combination activities guide and journal, 940 Saturdays. Start this weekend!”

Parents Magazine

“940 Saturdays is all you get with your kids. I love this new book on how best to spend them.”

–Jill Smokler, NYT Bestselling Author of Confessions of a Scary Mommy 

“Must Read Book for every parent”

–Tovah Klein, PhD, Director, Barnard College Center for Toddler Development; Author of How Toddlers Thrive 

“A beautiful way to record the precious yet fleeting time with our children. Wished I would have received one of these when my children were little .. it would have had been a tangible record of ‘ where did all the time go?’. What an amazing baby gift !”

–Rivka Caroline, Author of From Frazzled to Focused 

“…940 Saturdays will be able to help us fully enrich and embrace our weekends with our kids. And with charming cover art by artist Lisa Congdon, this is one parenting book you won’t want to hide.

MotherMag.com

No Regrets Parenting

Turning Long Days and Short Years into Cherished Moments with Your Kids (Andrews McMeel Publishing, 2012)

No Regrets Parenting is time management magic for busy parents with kids from crib through college. But this is not like other “time management books.”  Those are geared for efficiency with kids rather than for intimacy with them, for organizing rather than optimizing the time parents spend with their kids. How to get everything done is not the same as how to make the time spent with kids more meaningful and memorable. This is a book about capturing the precious moments of parenting that otherwise are lost in the name of efficiency. It will guide you in taking the mundane, exhausting routines of parenthood and turning them into special parenting events. It’s all about redefining “quality time.” No Regrets Parenting is written for parents before they set priorities that they’ll come to regret. A book to be read when bedtime and bath time rituals are still observed, No Regrets Parentingis an easy to read guidebook that gives timeless advice to parents for whom time is in short supply.

“My office is littered with “parenting books”… The books, as abundant as they are, aren’t helping. But Dr. Rotbart’s No Regrets Parenting is something special…Dr. Rotbart writes to help us turn painfully long minutes into funny moments, and he does it practically, in one- or two-page essays on everything from ice cream sundaes to college counseling. It’s short, it’s sweet, and it’s more about being a parent than it is about actually parenting the kids themselves…”

KJ Dell’Antonia, New York Times

“I’m making a point of holding hands with my kids more often, ever since I read Dr. Harley Rotbart’s new book No Regrets Parenting. Dr. Rotbart made me realize I shouldn’t count the minutes, but the moments…Dr. Rotbart’s book turned my head around.”

Dana Points, Editor-in-Chief, Parents magazine

“The tone and approach of Rotbart’s book puts the control back in the parent’s hands, by focusing on the time a parent does have with children, instead of focusing on the time that the parent doesn’t have… feels like a knowledgeable friend sharing their own insight.”

Cara Lemieux, ABC News

“Dr. Rotbart has a gift for uncovering and explaining the countless possibilities in parenting. This book is a treasure for all of us with children.”

Jeffrey Zaslow, #1 New York Times bestselling coauthor of The Last Lecture; and Moving On columnist, The Wall Street Journal.

“What’s more precious than love, your children, and time?  No Regrets Parenting is a gem of a book. It will help you turn the minutes of the day into the moments of your life.”

Harvey Karp, MD, creator of the New York Times bestselling books and DVDs The Happiest Baby on the Block and The Happiest Toddler on the Block.

“No Regrets Parenting helps today’s busy parents stop worrying about trying to be perfect, and offers low-key ways to make the most of the time they spend with their children… Dr. Rotbart’s wise advice and refreshing ideas will make you want to pick up this book again and again.”

Diane Debrovner, Deputy Editor, Parents Magazine

Germ Proof Your Kids

The Complete Guide to Protecting (without Overprotecting) Your Kids from Infections (ASM Press, 2008).

Germ Proof Your Kids is the one-stop shop for all of parents’ germ questions. The book is presented in 4 sections which address: the most common germs and the diseases they cause; children’s natural defenses and the prudent use of antibiotics and vaccines; the value of home remedies from grandmother and the health food store; and, how to understand and interpret the latest research news. The book brings everything parents need to know about kids’ infections together in one easy-to-read, concise book. The book has also become an important desk reference for doctors and nurses in clinics and schools across the country.  By providing up-to-date, succinct information on all of the infections that kids bring to the clinic, this book helps health providers educate parents about germs and the best treatment options (including no treatment at all!).

“Whether you are a new or seasoned parent, invisible threats to your child’s welfare can leave you feeling anxious and powerless. Let GERM PROOF YOUR KIDS be your trusted ally when your child is in the throes of an illness or another disease outbreak makes headline news. Dr. Harley Rotbart—a knowledgeable pediatrician, distinguished professor, internationally recognized infectious disease specialist, and experienced parent—knows first-hand the havoc germs can wreak on our children, families, and society. Translating complex scientific concepts into practical, easily readable, and entertaining information, Dr. Rotbart equips parents to understand a vast array of infections and how they are spread, to comply with prescribed treatments and preventive immunization schedules, and to reduce the number of illnesses that children acquire. This clear and comprehensive resource will dispel your germ phobias, bring clarity to today’s alphabet-soup of infectious disease threats, and arm you with empowering perspective, prudence, and common sense.”

Marianne Neifert, M.D. (Dr. Mom®), pediatrician, bestselling author of Dr Mom: A Guide to Baby and Child Care and Dr. Mom’s Parenting Guide: Commonsense Guidance for the Life of Your Child; columnist for Parenting magazine, nationally renowned speaker, mother of five and grandmother of seven.

“Parents should read this book. In an entertaining and easy to understand way, Dr. Rotbart explains everything a parent needs to know about infections. This is a terrific book!”

Stephen Berman, M.D., FAAP, Professor of Pediatrics; Past President of the American Academy of Pediatrics; author of Getting it Right for Children

The On Deck Circle of Life

101 Lessons from the Dugout (iUniverse Press, 2007)

A game plan for happiness and success in the major leagues of school, friendships, and family life. Everything a child needs to know about life can be learned from the dugout steps. Every pitch, hit, and play on the baseball field is its own life lesson. From taking charge under a pop fly, to taking risks on the base paths, to taking heart on the bench, THE ON DECK CIRCLE OF LIFE connects parents and their kids through the analogies, axioms, and allegories that baseball offers for life off the field. Written for kids of all ages to read, and for parents to read over their kids’ shoulders, this is a warm and wise playbook for the game of life.

You and I share the belief that baseball is a great avenue to learning skills that can translate to all aspects of our life.  I have shared your book with our foundation staff and encouraged them to incorporate the lessons into our character education program. Thank you for contributing to the development of healthy, happy children.

Cal Ripken, Jr.,Member, National Baseball Hall of Fame

“With style, wit and wisdom, this beautiful little book captures the essence of life lessons we all would like our children to understand and embrace. Each brief chapter stands alone, offering clear, practical advice and insight regarding the challenges and opportunities life throws our way.”

Gail Reichlin, Founder and Executive Director, Parents Resource Network; and, Bestselling Author of The Pocket Parent