Rest in peace, Mayer Eisenstein, M.D.

Dec. 25, 2014 It is with great sadness that I share the news with you that a truly special man has died. Dr. Eisenstein was a home birth doctor who has been such a great friend to midwives and birthing families. He has helped to educate on the dangers of vaccines. He will be sorely missed. This message is from his son.

Mayer Eisenstein, M. D., Extraordinary Man.

Mayer Eisenstein, M. D., Extraordinary Man.

Bringer of Light

The name Mayer means “bringer of light” in Hebrew. What an appropriate name this is for my father. Just like the miracle of Chanukah where the lights did not go out, my father’s light did not go out. It was passed on to his children, his grandchildren, his partners, and all who knew him. They will be sure to keep his light burning strong. He was always a beacon for the causes he championed such as, vaccines and religious choice, minimal intervention, minimal pharmaceuticals, and supplemental use. His philosophy will continue in our endeavors as he would want.

As many may have heard, my family has had the ultimate loss. Monday morning we lost our patriarch, Mayer Eisenstein, MD, JD, MPH. He was the greatest Husband, Father, Grandfather, Son, Physician, and Attorney. In essence, there was nothing in which he did not excel. If Dad wanted to do something, not only did he accomplish it; but it would be completed in record time with accolades, awards, and incredible respect from his peers. Even in the field of medicine where you would expect him to have “enemies”, it was the very rare exception. More often than not, there was nothing but respect, praise, and gratitude for his expressing an opinion that many agreed with but did not have the courage to utter. This is a terrible loss for the entire community.

Everyone knew him as the physician who gave you all he had. He made sure every patient he saw felt that they were his number one patient, period, because at that moment they were. He might not have remembered your name, but he could recite every aspect of your medical history by seeing your face. Countless times we could be somewhere, and a person would walk up to him and say, “You delivered my daughter fifteen years ago.” Within a minute he would recite, “Wait, it was snowing in October, you had a short labor followed by a mini birthday party.” The feelings of exuberance were as much for him as was for the patient. No physician ever gave as much of themselves to their practice. In the course of practice, his organization delivered over 15,000 children and took care of 20,000 families. With his study in medicine these families got the benefit of Minimal Cesarean Section, No Autism, No Asthma, No Juvenile Diabetes, and a greatly reduced incidence of infection and sickness. One time, in a record’s review, the reviewing physician said, “Eisenstein, you are just lucky.” To which his superior said, “Would you rather us have unlucky Doctors?” Call it luck; you came to this practice and you stayed healthy.

As much as he gave to his patients, he gave to his family even more. In my early childhood, it was standard practice for us to take two cars where ever we went. Dad would regularly be called away to assist a woman giving birth all hours of the day, rain or shine. This never stopped him from being with us. Many times he would come home in the middle of the night not ready to go to sleep. If I were the least bit up, he would come by me saying, “Let’s go out a little bit.” It was always the same. We would go to 7-11 and play some pinball for an hour. He always told my mother, “Stop worrying about what time it is. Spending time with my children is more important than worrying about school. My children will be successful period!” He left this world with six children. All with advanced degrees: four with doctorates, an attorney, two nurse practitioners, two veterinarians, and the youngest person to ever complete all levels of the actuarial examinations. There is no arguing about his success in raising his children and making them all great.

As his oldest son, I can go on with examples, stories, and the like. To me, he was my father, mentor, best friend, partner, and classmate (we went to law school together, which is a story in and of itself). He was involved in every facet of our lives. Since he was involved in every aspect of our lives, in the practice and in everything else, he gave me and my sister the tools we need to carry his message forward.

With this great tragedy in all of our lives we will still be here serving his practice and extended practice with the philosophy he cultivated over the FORTY PLUS years he was in practice.

Jeremy B Eisenstein Esq.

9 thoughts on “Rest in peace, Mayer Eisenstein, M.D.

  1. Hello Gloria, I came upon your site as I was on reading posts about Mayer. My husband and I have been with Mayer for almost 30 years. I have had all home births and my kids are vaccine free. He is family to us as we are to him. This is a very difficult loss and a shocking one as well. I support all home birth moms and have spoken many many times to mothers to be and moms who have just given birth all at HomeFirst. Thanks for what you do, I love that your continuing the education to so many people on home birth, training and understanding in the importance of this beautiful experience. Bless your work and wishing the best for 2015!!

    Stefany Guigli

  2. Thank you for this wonderful post. What a man, what a legacy. Grateful for his progeny who are all making a huge difference in their little corner of the planet…. just like you, Gloria. If only we all could reach so high, shines so bright!

  3. Thank you for your post about the life of Dr. Mayor Eisenstein. He had a great influence on my life when I began my life of birthing. I lived in Chicago then, and Home First Health Services was the clinic I used to have my first home births. I am so thankful that he worked tirelessly to get his message out. His message of a MUCH better way. I have had 5 home births, and now help empower others to birth at home. Thanks again for the post!

  4. What an inspiration to us all! I was so shaken when I heard the news that he is now in heaven. He is truly missed here.

  5. Dr. Eistenstein was the intelligent spokesperson and skilled family practice physician, but he would lay down his life for his fellow practitioners in his HomeFirst practice. I admired Dr. Eisenstein for once catching the largest baby in Illinois, 13 lb. at home, for giving women a chance to have a home birth after cesarean, for applying “the home court advantage” metaphor in his book to convey the importance of a supportive environment in natural childbirth. When blood transfusions were proposed for our premie for jaundice, on a holiday weekend, when we had a different neonatologist everyday, unknown to us, we were comforted by his phone consultation, that we just had to get a second blood test to demonstrate that our bilirubin score had reached a plateau. So I pumped and bottle-fed breastmilk every two hours before the next blood draw and it did plateau. Dr. Eisenstein gave generously of his time, on his weekly radio program and at our Birthwise meetings in the south suburbs, to answer questions about NAPSACs standards of safe childbearing : good nutrition, skillful midwifery, natural childbirth, home birth, and breastfeeding. He will be sorely missed, he had my utmost respect.

  6. Home birth has changed my life for the better and that is because Dr Mayer Eisenstein always empowered parents and encouraged breastfeeding.

  7. Mayer delivered our fist son on july 6th, 1974 in Evanston…..home birth. My husband and I will always love him.

  8. I weep to hear this news of his passing, as he was like a family member to us following the births of our two children in the mid-70’s. His attitude of faith in the natural ‘design’ of Creator-GOD inspired me then in parenting, guiding how I still relate to my body-processes, and view the health-practitioners who I chose to ‘partner’ with, as I move through life! I find peace knowing that I will see him again in Heaven, where he surely is sitting surrounded by joyful children! Thank You, GOD, for the ‘gift’ of Mayer Eisenstein, who shared/brought Your Light to so many!

  9. I had 3 children at Homefirst with 3 different doctors. I was only 20 years old with my first. They all did a wonderful job educating me on delivery/ breastfeeding/ not vaccinating. I always listened to dr Mayer on his radio shows. I am so saddened to have heard of his death . Dr rosi had saved my daughter early on when she was sick and I had taken her to the emergency room and they just sent us home with antibiotics.. if it wasn’t for mr rosi advising us to go down to children’s memorial asap who knows what would have been .. thank you Mayer for having a wonderful staff and doctors with home first,,,, God bless Mayer will be missed.

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