Book Review: When Did Everybody Else Get So Old?

**Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book for free from Handlebar Publishing.  All opinions are 100% mine.

I jumped at the chance to read this book by Jennifer Grant because of the title:

When Did Everybody Else Get So Old?  | Indignities, Compromises, and the Unexpected Grace of Midlife.  I mean, I am RIGHT in the thick of "Midlife" right now.  I'm sure "midlife" is a span of years and not just one year, which she jokingly tried to pinpoint at one point in the book.

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This book was not exactly what I was expecting.  Actually, I'm not sure what I was expecting.
This book was a collection of essays written by Jennifer Grant.  They were in a loosely chronological order and range from kids growing up, to losing her sister to melanoma or a dear friend to cancer to her real life insecurities and sometimes wavering faith. 

There were many times I completely knew where she was coming from.  Yes, yes and yes!  That's exactly how I feel right now!  And there were some times that I wasn't on the same page as her, mainly because I've just entered menopause, but I don't have the whole "acceptance of self" and ability to live intentionally that it sounds like she's reached. 

I liked the book.  I wish I could give you as complete a review as you need of this book.  BUT, because I'm a mother, who is middle-aged, and has middle schoolers, and was reading it in stages, as I try to keep the rest of my life running smoothly, I have forgotten a lot of the specifics of the book!  

What I DO remember is this: I liked that I could read one chapter at a time, although I usually wasn't able to stop at one chapter, because the little essays were entertaining to read and I wanted to keep reading.  I feel like I cried more than I laughed though, as the reality that my kids are growing up quicker than I like was under my nose the entire time reading this book.  

There were some reviewers that took issue with her "theology."  This book is billed as a "religion" and/or "Christian Life" book.  If you are looking for solid theology, this probably isn't the book for you.  If however, you are a real life human who has faults, insecurities, and are just trying to figure this life out, even when you have crises of faith, than you can probably relate.  

There are bible verses and mentions of her faith and church throughout the book, but I don't think it's overly religious.  It's a glimpse into the author's life as she navigates through her 5th decade, with all the complications, emotions, experiences and growth that can happen during that time.

Her faith goes from asking God to meet her halfway in the beginning of the book and presumably her early 40s, to this part in the middle of the book:

 "This tug-of-war between the skeptic and the hopeful believer serves at least one important function in my spirituality--I'm reminded over and over again, that I cannot figure God out,"

to her "deeper acceptance of the mystery of God" in the end of the book.  You can see that she has grown in almost every way in the decade between her 40s and 50s.




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