The Valedictorian of Being Dead: The True Story of Dying Ten Times to Live

Simon and Schuster

Narrated by Heather B. Armstrong

This audiobook will become available on April 23, 2019. You will not be charged until it is released.

From New York Times bestselling author and blogger Heather B. Armstrong comes an honest and irreverent memoir—reminiscent of the New York Times bestseller Brain on Fire—about her experience as one of only a few people to participate in an experimental treatment for depression involving ten rounds of a chemically induced coma approximating brain death.

For years, Heather B. Armstrong has alluded to her struggle with depression on her website, dooce. It’s scattered throughout her archive, where it weaves its way through posts about pop culture, music, and motherhood. But in 2016, Heather found herself in the depths of a depression she just couldn’t shake, an episode darker and longer than anything she had previously experienced. She had never felt so discouraged by the thought of waking up in the morning, and it threatened to destroy her life. So, for the sake of herself and her family, Heather decided to risk it all by participating in an experimental clinical trial involving a chemically induced coma approximating brain death.

Now, for the first time, Heather recalls the torturous eighteen months of suicidal depression she endured and the month-long experimental study in which doctors used propofol anesthesia to quiet all brain activity for a full fifteen minutes before bringing her back from a flatline. Ten times. The experience wasn’t easy. Not for Heather or her family. But a switch was flipped, and Heather hasn’t experienced a single moment of suicidal depression since.

Disarmingly honest, self-deprecating, and scientifically fascinating, The Valedictorian of Being Dead brings to light a groundbreaking new treatment for depression.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Simon and Schuster
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Published on
Apr 23, 2019
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ISBN
9781508280903
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Language
English
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Genres
Biography & Autobiography / Medical (incl. Patients)
Biography & Autobiography / Personal Memoirs
Health & Fitness / Diseases / Nervous System (incl. Brain)
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Export option
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Eligible for Family Library

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"If you were to rush in to this room right now and announce that you had struck a deal-with God, Allah, Buddha, Christ, Krishna, Bill Gates, whomever-in which the ten years since my diagnosis could be magically taken away, traded in for ten more years as the person I was before, I would, without a moment's hesitation, tell you to take a hike."

In September 1998, Michael J. Fox stunned the world by announcing that he had been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease -- a degenerative neurological condition. In fact, he had been secretly fighting it for seven years. The worldwide response was staggering. Fortunately, he had accepted the diagnosis, and by the time the public started grieving for him, he had stopped grieving for himself. With the same passion, humor, and energy that he has invested in his dozens of performances over the last eighteen years, he tells the story of his life, his career, and his campaign to find a cure for Parkinson's.

Combining his trademark ironic sensibility and keen sense of the absurd, he recounts his life -- from his childhood in western Canada to his meteoric rise in film and television which made him a worldwide celebrity. Most importantly, he writes of the last ten years, during which -- with the unswerving support of his wife, family, and friends -- he has dealt with his illness. He talks about what Parkinson's has given him: the chance to appreciate a wonderful life and career, and the opportunity to help search for a cure and spread public awareness of the disease. He feels as if he is a very lucky man, indeed.

From the creator of Bulletproof Coffee and author of the bestselling The Bulletproof Diet comes a revolutionary plan to upgrade your brainpower—in two weeks or less.

For the last decade, Silicon Valley entrepreneur Dave Asprey has worked with world-renowned doctors and scientists to uncover the latest, most innovative methods for making humans perform better—a process known as "biohacking." In his first book, The Bulletproof Diet, he shared his biohacking tips for taking control of your own biology. Now, in Head Strong, Asprey shows readers how to biohack their way to a sharper, smarter, faster, more resilient brain.

Imagine feeling like your mind is operating at its clearest and sharpest, and being able—possibly for the first time in your life—to do more in less time? What it suddenly became easier to do the very hardest things you do? Or if you could feel 100% confident about your intellect, and never again fear being the person in the room who just isn’t smart enough, or can’t remember something important? How would you treat people if the mood swings, short temper, and food cravings that disrupt your day could simply disappear?

In Head Strong, Asprey shows us that all of this is possible—and more. Using his simple lifestyle modifications (or "hacks") to take advantage of how the structure of your brain works, readers will learn how to take their mental performance to the next level. Combining the latest findings in neuroscience and neurobiology with a hacker-inspired "get it done now" perspective, Asprey offers a program structured around key areas of brain performance that will help you:

Power the brain with exactly what it needs to perform at its best all day longEliminate the sources of "kryptonite," both nutritional and environmental, that make the brain slower.Supercharge the cellular powerhouses of our brains, the mitochondria, to eliminate cravings and turn up mental focus.Reverse inflammation to perform better right now, then stay sharp and energized well into your golden years.Promote neuron growth to enhance processing speed and reinforce new learning—hotwiring your brain for success.

Asprey’s easy to follow, two-week program offers a detailed plan to supercharge brain performance, including: which foods to eat and which ones to avoid, how to incorporate the right kinds of physical activity into your day, a detox protocol for your home and body; meditation and breathing for performance, recommended brain-boosting supplements; and how to adjust the lighting in your home and work space to give your brain the quality light it thrives on.

A better brain—and a happier, easier, more productive life—is within reach. You just need to get Head Strong.

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