A beautiful review from blogger/author Kimberly Morand

Kimberly Morand

 

Kimberly Morand’s book review for Birth of a New Brain – Healing from Postpartum Bipolar Disorder “knocked my socks off.

(Well, I was sockless when I read the review, but my socks would’ve come off had they been on!) Her review shows how incredible HER writing is – I recommend subscribing to her extraordinary, award-winning blog “All Work And No Play Make Mommy Go Something Something” now.

I hope she writes a book because I’ll snap it up in a heartbeat. In the meantime, I recommend subscribing to her extraordinary blog “All Work And No Play Make Mommy Go Something Something.” 

http://www.makemommygosomethingsomething.com/tag/book-review/

Okay, I’m going back to my hiatus cave. I’m sending love to you all!

Dyane

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I Like Being A Loser!

 

 

Lose It! Update

Last fall, I gained 30 pounds in less than three months.

 

Why?

 

I’ll boil it down to three words:

 

 

Book launch stress!    

 

I hit rock bottom in December. If I kept gaining weight, my fatigue would only worsen. I didn’t feel comfortable in my body and I felt plain-old-gross. 

 

It was time to take action and I’m so glad I did. Blogger Kitt O’Malley and I have been participating in the free Lose It! program. We’re in the “Bipolar Battlers” community group which you can find on the Lose It! website under “Community.” I’ve lost 15 pounds, I stopped my nightly binges, and I’m figuring out with my therapist how I can break the insidious emotional overeating cycle.

 

By the way, you don’t need to be in a group; you can go solo or create your own group –

visit this link to make it happen!

Let me know if you have questions. 

Dr. Ellen Vora

I want to tell you about another very cool holistic psychiatrist. In previous posts, I mentioned the holistic psychiatrist Dr. Denise McDermott who practices in southern California. (You can hear our podcast at this link.

Well, yesterday I came across Dr. Ellen Vora, a New York-based holistic psychiatrist. I think I spotted her name on Twitter. Anyway, she’s currently traveling around the world with her family for six months to visit cultures she believes are healthier than ours. She’s recording short-but-informative YouTube videos at each country she visits. Some of the topics are very relevant to those of us with bipolar and anxiety.

She has great handouts on her website that you can print out – for bipolar (mood stabilization), visit here.

I particularly liked watching Dr. Vora’s YouTube videos about insomnia, “caveman” sleep, lowering your standards for exercise, and being dehydrated even if you drink a lot of water.  There are 43 videos; I’m sure some of her other topics will appeal to you.

Here’s the YouTube link to get you started

See you next Friday! Enjoy your weekend!

Lots of love,

Dyane

 

 

Birth of a New Brain – Healing from Postpartum Bipolar Disorder

Foreword by the acclaimed perinatal psychiatrist and author Dr. Carol Henshaw.

Please visit Amazon to order a Kindle or paperback version—thank you!

Jogging Through Jello!

Dear Friends,

As today’s blog post title implies, I’ve been dragging big-time the past week. Maybe my fatigue is due to the drastic cut in sugar I made last month, maybe it’s perimenopause making its spooky debut, maybe it’s a thyroid issue—maybe it’s all three! In any case, I’m sick of it, so I made an appointment with my doctor to get checked out. 

Have you ever wanted to write for BP Magazine?

 

You guys & gals are fab writers so I wanted to share this info. with you. Last week I emailed BP’s longtime editor Liz Forbes (who I recently worked with on my article) and got back this auto-reply: 

 

Please be advised that Tanya Hvilivitzky has taken the role of bp Magazine &
esperanza’s interim editor. Tanya will respond to your email and editorial
questions ASAP.

We thank you for your patience during this transitional phase.

If you’ve ever wanted to pitch BP an article idea, now’s the time to come up with your idea. (look at the BP website here for their guidelines) and write it down.

I’ll let you know if I find out anything as far as who the permanent hire will be—I could be totally wrong, but I don’t see a problem with pitching to an interim editor.

 

Then again, I’ve only written for ten magazines since 1997. Please let me know if you think otherwise! Do what feels right!  The email is used is: editor@hopetocope.com

 

Lose It! Update

(And no, I don’t get compensated by mentioning Lose It! – ha! I wish!!!)

Do you want to drop some lovely adipose tissue (a.k.a. fat) you don’t need dragging you down? Even 5 lbs is an awfully HEAVY load to carry around – pick up anything that weighs 5 lbs and you’ll see what I mean. 

 

Join me & my friend, the blogger Kitt O’Malley, in the free Lose It! program. We’re in the “Bipolar Battlers” community group which you can find on the Lose It! website under “Community.” Let me know if you have questions. 

 

By the way, you don’t need to be in a group; you can go solo or create your own group – visit this link to make it happen!

images-1images-2Unknown

What’s new with you?

Inquiring brains want to know…please share in the comments if you’re in the mood.

And be extra-good to yourself this weekend! 

Lots of love,

Dyane

 

Birth of a New Brain – Healing from Postpartum Bipolar Disorder

by Dyane Harwood

Foreword by the acclaimed perinatal psychiatrist and bestselling author Dr. Carol Henshaw. Visit Amazon to order a Kindle or paperback version—thank you!

Au Revoir, Fat & Dr. Benicio Frey’s Webinar

Dear Friends,

If you’ve read my book Birth of a New Brain – Healing from Postpartum Bipolar Disorder, you’ll know I was an A.C.E.-certified personal trainer and worked in a gym for a few years.

 

This was me, “B.B.D.” (Before Bipolar Diagnosis) 

At college, I gained the “Freshman 20+” instead of the typical “Freshman 15.” Ever since my uni days, my adipose tissue (the fancy term for fat) has fluctuated in quantity due to a variety of reasons; bipolar depression and stress/anxiety have been the main reasons for my weight gain.

 

Last year was one of the most stressful years I’ve ever experienced.

 

I was under a deadline with Post Hill Press to deliver my edited manuscript. At least writing my book didn’t almost kill me (During that same year, Bipolar Burble blogger Natasha Tracy published a post called Writing a Book about Bipolar and Depression Almost Killed Me), but what did happen was that I gained almost 30 pounds in only a couple months.

 

If I kept up that rate of weight gain, I’d turn into Jabba the Hutt!

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On a serious note, I’d risk developing very serious health conditions and complications.

 

 

I realized I had to come to terms with my emotional stress eating once and for all.

“Coming to terms” sounds nice and granola-y, but what does that really mean?

 

Well, for me, it begins with enlisting my counselor’s support and making a commitment to myself stop this vicious cycle.

 

It means bringing my shame out into the open, which is why I’m publishing this post despite having second, third, and fourth thoughts.

 

I’m also a fan of self-help books, although I admit I never do the exercises they usually require. Nevertheless, I just started reading a self-help book and a healthy food cookbook. Both of them are inspiring me and I’ll share those titles here after I finish reading them.

The only thing that has ever helped me lose weight has been using a free tracking app called Lose It!

Last year I wrote about using Lose It!:Losing a Mirror Carp Feels Good.

 

If you’re like me—an emotional, compulsive overeater/binger/midnight fridge marauder—and you’d like to join me and get healthier, please consider joining Lose It! I keep reading that pairing up with others when embarking on weight loss greatly increases your chance of success. 

 

On Lose It!, I belong to two groups where we cheer one another on. Once you’ve signed up, go to “Community”, then select”Find Groups” and type one (or both) of these in:

Moms with Bipolar group

Bipolar Battlers group

And now for something completely different….

Frey

Dr. Benicio Frey

Apart from my weight woes, I wanted to let you know psychiatrist Dr. Benicio Frey will present a free webinar about perinatal mood disorder research next Wednesday, January 17th from 9:00 a.m.- 10:00 a.m. PST.  

The webinar is sponsored by the International Bipolar Foundation and it’s not too late to sign up – just go to this link!

The following section is just part of Dr. Frey’s impressive bio.; you’ll find the rest of it on the IBPF link:

“Dr. Frey is Associate Professor at the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences at McMaster University, Academic Head of the Mood Disorders Program, and Director of the Women’s Health Concerns Clinic at St. Joseph’s Healthcare. 

In 2008, Dr. Frey received a CIHR postdoctoral fellowship award to study brain imaging in perimenopausal women with depression, at the Women’s Health Concerns Clinic, St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton. Currently, Dr. Frey has over 100 articles published in peer-reviewed journals.”

Lastly, I want to share a cool new resource with you – it’s run by John Emotions, the charismatic podcaster and founder of Bipolar Style. John wanted a “private, more focused area to talk about Bipolar” that will surpass Facebook forums, etc. He created Bipolar Party on Yammer and I really like the layout – it’s original and it has great potential. 

Come join us! If you’re interested, email me your email address so I can send you an invitation: dyane@baymoon.com 

And on that note, have a good weekend, and I’ll see you next Friday. (I hope I’ll see some of you on Lose It! too. Feel free to ask me any questions about it in the comments!)

Take good care & lots of love,

Dyane

 

Birth of a New Brain – Healing from Postpartum Bipolar Disorder

Foreword by the acclaimed perinatal psychiatrist and author Dr. Carol Henshaw.

Please visit Amazon to order a Kindle or paperback version—thank you!

Last Time at the Munchkin

 

An unexpected side effect due to my meds? 

 

Drinking too much espresso at Squaw’s Coffeebar – talk about a buzz with a view!

The beautiful sunrise on Red Dog Ridge. I watch this sunrise each morning from the cabin. Squaw Valley is directly on the other side of the ridge.

 

Dear Friends,

Happy New Year! 

I’m writing this post from the Munchkin cabin in Alpine Meadows, California. We’ve been coming here in the winter and summer for the past ten years. Craig found this place on Craigslist, appropriately enough, and the first time we pulled up to the cabin I couldn’t believe how big and spectacular it was. Normally we couldn’t afford this kind of rental, ever! However, we’ve been super-lucky the owner charged us 1/4th of the typical rate for Alpine Meadows cabin rentals. That’s nothing short of miraculous.

I’ve blogged about my Munchkin visits throughout the last decade. It’s where I’ve spent terrible trips due to my treatment-resistant bipolar depression. I’ve weighed as much as 170 pounds up here and I hardly did anything active except stuff my face with chocolate and shuffle around.

Zonked out on Xanax at 170 lbs, I’m praying the gondola won’t fall

Other times when I’ve been a much healthier 135-140 pounds and depression-free (something I never thought would happen in my lifetime),  I’ve had the energy to hike to my heart’s content. The hikes have never been easy due to the altitude, which is approximately 6480 feet, but once I get going I feel so much better mentally.

I’ve had a few terrifying experiences in the Munchkin. One summer I saw a BIG bear right outside the window. The bear had just been in our cabin, silently eating garbage near the entrance in the basement and he/she was undetected by any of us! How did the bear get in? Well, the front door had been left WIDE open and I’m happy to tell you I wasn’t the one who did that!

During another winter visit when I was deeply depressed, Craig fell down the steep stairs and broke his foot. I had to drive him and the girls to the hospital on icy roads—I think I drove less than one mile per hour!  

There have been happier times too, thank God. After my lithium/MAOI combination finally lifted my bipolar depression after seven years of hell, I was able to do fun things like take the girls ice skating and go on the Squaw Valley Gondola without popping a Xanax. I felt like myself again.

I wrote and edited a sizable chunk of my book in the Munchkin.


The view from the bathroom—in the summer the hill is covered with all kinds of wildflowers!

 

Last month the owner told us she’s selling the cabin so this will be our last visit. Sadly we don’t have close to a million dollars to buy a second home like many others do in this area. Hopefully, we’ll find another affordable place we can rent. 

 

A gorgeously lit home I passed during my walk last night

Today is our last day at the Munchkin and later on in the afternoon I’ll take Lucy on a snowy hike.

My hound LOVES the snow! Her super-thick Scottish collie fur will keep her cozy throughout our ramble. 

I hope that each of you will find your own version of “The Munchkin” —a special, beautiful, affordable place where you’ll only experience good things! You won’t suffer broken feet, bipolar depression, or chunky bears oh-so-quietly coming into your home.

See you next Friday!

Love,

Dyane

p.s. My 1st article for BP/Bipolar Magazine’s Winter issue is online. Please visit the link and take a look. If you can share the article via Twitter, Facebook, etc. (and if you want to knock my socks off, please comment) I’d be very grateful!

https://www.bphope.com/mom-with-a-mission-peripartum-bipolar/

 

Birth of a New Brain – Healing from Postpartum Bipolar Disorder With a foreword by the acclaimed perinatal psychiatrist and author Dr. Carol Henshaw. Please visit Amazon to order a Kindle or paperback version—thank you!

Another Book Review from Another Awesome Blogger!

Is Lucy going to lick my book?

 

 

Dear Friends,

I’m writing this post from the beautiful snowy mountains of Lake Tahoe, and I plan to take some pictures to share with you next Friday.

I can’t resist sharing one more review of my book. I don’t care if you skip the review – you have my blessing, but just make sure you check out the awesome blogger Ashley’s Mental Health @ Home” – I love her tagline:

“BUILDING MENTAL WELLNESS BY FINDING A FOUNDATION OF STRENGTH.” 

Sign me up for that foundation, Ashley!

Here’s the direct link to Ashley’s review:

https://mentalhealthathome.wordpress.com/2017/12/26/book-review-birth-of-a-new-brain-healing-from-postpartum-bipolar-disorder/

By the way, Ashley has worked as a nurse and pharmacist and she’s the author of numerous medical articles. She has some excellent posts about different meds—take a look.

I’ll be back next year (on Friday, Jan. 5th, that is) and in the meantime, please take good care of yourselves.

Love,

Dyane

Birth of a New Brain – Healing from Postpartum Bipolar Disorder With a foreword by the acclaimed perinatal psychiatrist and author Dr. Carol Henshaw. Please visit Amazon to order a Kindle or paperback version—thank you!

 

Mental Health @ Home

Birth of a New Brain book coverBirth of a New Brain – Healing from Postpartum Bipolar Disorder chronicles author Dyane Harwood’s journey with postpartum onset bipolar disorder.  The story’s rich, vivid descriptions draw the reader along on the intense roller coaster ride of the author’s illness experience.  Many elements of her story will be hauntingly familiar to those whose lives have been touched in some way by bipolar disorder, including mood symptoms whose true nature only became apparent with hindsight and well-meaning attempts to get off medication that result in disaster.

Mental illness was a part of Dyane’s life from the beginning, as her father had bipolar disorder.  When she first began to struggle with her own mental health, she was diagnosed with depression.  Glimmers of hypomania made occasional brief appearances, but as is so often the case with hypomania the symptoms were only recognizable as such upon later reflection.

Depression is the most recognized postpartum…

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A Down Under Review of My Book From “The Colour Of Madness”

Men At Work’s Down Under – 80s music forever!

(Did you know that Men At Work’s lead singer Colin Hay was born in Scotland, not Australia, so he’s related to Lucy!) 

“Colin and I go way back!”

 

Dear Friends,

I’ve made another great blog discovery and naturally, I want to share it with you.

Once in a while I’ll come across writing so remarkable, it strikes me deep in the heart. When that happens, I don’t even feel jealous of the author’s talent (those of you familiar with this blog know how green I can get!)—I just feel moved.

This phenomenon happened to me recently when I read Kate’s blog The Colour of MadnessI was truly honored she was willing to write a Birth of a New Brain review.

Apart from Kate’s book review, I encourage you to take a look at her blog. Here are two standouts:

Read Cliff Notes 

Read Death (trigger warning: suicide)

Here’s what Kate wrote about Birth of a New Brain:

 

 

I have been promising the wonderful author Dyane Harwood a review for her excellent memoir ‘Birth Of A New Brain’ for weeks now. Dyane and I started chatting on Twitter and she was kind enough to send me a copy of her book. The familiarity of Dyane’s experience hit home to me on so many levels […]

via Birth Of A New Brain – A Book Review — The Colour Of Madness

By the way, if you find yourself headed for a temper tantrum among your family, colleagues, etc., give yourself the gift of a bathroom time out. Stay in there at least a few minutes and take a few deep breaths; hopefully, it won’t be a nasty loo.

I know from personal experience doing this can help you avoid a Mt. Vesuvius moment!

Happy holidays and much love to you,

Dyane

p.s. In honor of Kate’s homeland, I’m featuring an Australian psychiatrist’s endorsement of my book. Dr. Greg de Moore lives in Sydney and he’s  the co-author of a fascinating book titled Finding Sanity: John Cade, Lithium and the Taming of Bipolar Disorder.

 

Birth of a New Brain – Healing from Postpartum Bipolar Disorder With a foreword by the acclaimed perinatal psychiatrist and author Dr. Carol Henshaw. Please visit Amazon to order a Kindle or paperback version—thank you!