I do not think I am especially complex or smart. It doesn’t take lots of time or effort to know me…or learn my likes and dislikes. As my father used to say, “Peter, you wear your heart on your sleeve.” He was right, my emotions have always been readily available for scrutiny and have often gotten me in trouble. It is the price I pay for feeling strongly about those I love and issues I care about.
So, I love and care unconditionally and dislike unapologetically. I am also faithful to a fault but unforgiving of those unfaithful to me. I don’t expect, nor do I demand quid pro quo, but I don’t want Brutus as a friend, either. Above all, I enjoy making people laugh. Laughter tops any prescription I can write. As for intelligence, I am average…my ability to read handcuffed by dyslexia.
Like everyone, I have my strengths, and mine are understanding children, solving diagnostic dilemmas, and working with the psychosocial fabric of families. In my opinion, physicians don’t have to be brilliant. What they need is enough drive and intelligence to make it through medical school and unalterable compassion for people.
I was born in Boston and raised in Brookline, Massachusetts. My brother, Paul, and I grew up in a privileged environment with warm, loving parents. My wife’s name is Kathy. She is the love of my life and my favorite doubles partner. Of the tennis trophies we’ve won, our favorite is the mixed doubles championship in the 2006 Badger State Games.
I have three children: Jill, Amy, and Andy; and five grandchildren: McKerrah, Daphne, Logan, Danny, and Campbell. Logan Karofsky, who lives in Denver, designed the cover of And the Oaks Heard Them All. I attended Brookline High and the Rivers School before matriculating at Bowdoin College.
I received my medical degree from Tufts University and performed my internship and residencies at the University of Wisconsin and Indiana University. I served as a pediatrician in the United States Air Force for two years during the Vietnam war. After seven years in a multispecialty clinic in Madison, Wisconsin, I was appointed Director of General Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine at the University of Wisconsin and practiced in that setting until my retirement.