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

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

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.

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

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

  • Erin

    Thanks to Netgalley and Simon&Shuster Canada for a digital galley in exchange for an honest review. Well, I never stray away from a tough subject in my reading material. I was seduced by the title a...

  • Barbara

    3.5 starsHeather B. ArmstrongHeather B. Armstrong is a popular 'mommy blogger' who uses her website 'Dooce' to share posts about her family, personal life, pop culture, music, commercial products, and...

  • Nancy

    I am so conflicted with this book. The good is that the author is honest about her depression and describes it so very well. Her writing is compulsive and her relationship with words is enviable. I ap...

  • Gretchen Rubin

    Haunting, powerful memoir of depression....

  • Deborah Stevens

    Memoir consists of two things: the strength of the story being told, and the strength of the book.The story here is very compelling because it concerns a topic we all know, some of us too well: depres...

  • Beth

    Blogging must be such a weird way to make a living. You’re a good writer, so you start writing...about your job, your life, your kids. And then the ad money starts to roll and suddenly: commodificat...

  • Karen

    A valiant effort chronicling a devastating illness, I feel for Armstrong and the strength it must have taken to face her demons head on via 10 experimental treatments despite scary complications. Guts...

  • Gina

    It took a great deal of courage to write this book, and for that I applaud Heather Armstrong. However, I also wish she hadn't had to suffer so much to have this story to begin with.For many years, Hea...

  • Sarah

    Thank you to the publisher via NetGalley for providing me with an e-arc for review, this has in no way influenced my opinion.The Valedictorian of Being Dead is Heather B. Armstrong's recollections of ...

  • Ali Edwards

    I'm going with 5 stars on this one because I think it's such an important read about depression + hope + life. It's Heather's own experience - not a prescription - showing a path she took to get out o...