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No Cure for Being Human (2021)

di Kate Bowler

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1504151,106 (4.38)3
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER * The bestselling author of Everything Happens for a Reason (And Other Lies I've Loved) asks, how do you move forward with a life you didn't choose? "Kate Bowler is the only one we can trust to tell us the truth."--Glennon Doyle, author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Untamed It's hard to give up on the feeling that the life you really want is just out of reach. A beach body by summer. A trip to Disneyland around the corner. A promotion on the horizon. Everyone wants to believe that they are headed toward good, better, best. But what happens when the life you hoped for is put on hold indefinitely?  Kate Bowler believed that life was a series of unlimited choices, until she discovered, at age 35, that her body was wracked with cancer. In No Cure for Being Human, she searches for a way forward as she mines the wisdom (and absurdity) of today's "best life now" advice industry, which insists on exhausting positivity and on trying to convince us that we can out-eat, out-learn, and out-perform our humanness. We are, she finds, as fragile as the day we were born.  With dry wit and unflinching honesty, Kate Bowler grapples with her diagnosis, her ambition, and her faith as she tries to come to terms with her limitations in a culture that says anything is possible. She finds that we need one another if we're going to tell the truth: Life is beautiful and terrible, full of hope and despair and everything in between--and there's no cure for being human.… (altro)
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Kate Bowler believed that life was a series of unlimited choices, until she discovered, at age 35, that her body was wracked with cancer. In No Cure for Being Human, she searches for a way forward as she mines the wisdom (and absurdity) of today’s “best life now” advice industry, which insists on exhausting positivity and on trying to convince us that we can out-eat, out-learn, and out-perform our humanness. We are, she finds, as fragile as the day we were born.

Six years later, the author reflects on her journey since her diagnosis and all the questions it raised about life and time, relationships and perspective. It is raw and heart breaking and the author is very relatable for any type A A person will understand the terror of being told that the life you’ve always controlled and directed is now running fast down a track you didn’t choose. With raw emotion and sincerity Bowler reflects on the in-depth treatments, the struggles of hers and her families. This book will easily draw tears to many eyes and cause many hearts to swell.

In the interest of full honesty, I must say there was a downside to this for me which is the impression given that the author is still far too close to her own pain to be objective, opening the door for some contradictions in the overall message of the story.

I'd rate it just under four stars so I rounded up, and I do recommend this to anyone struggling and overwhelmed with traditional self help culture, or currently experiencing any sense of existential crisis.

Thank you to net galley and publisher for providing a free e-copy for me to read and share my honest opinion. I am grateful for the opportunity to experience and speak about this book. ( )
  chasingholden | Apr 26, 2022 |
Memoir of Kate Bowler's experience of being involved in a clinical trial for stage 4 colon cancer at the age of 35. ( )
  tangledthread | Mar 31, 2022 |
This is gorgeous with a world of feels involved. There were more tears than laughs, but the vivid honesty expressed here was amazing; I need to return to this often I believe. ( )
  spinsterrevival | Jan 8, 2022 |
I am a Kate Bowler superfan and I am convinced that should we ever meet, she and I would agree to be great friends pretty much instantly. We have a lot in common after all: We both work at seminaries, we both face almost every situation with sometimes inappropriate humor, and we both are living with Stage IV cancer. This is Bowler's second book that revolves around her health, and this one leans heavily into the experience of living with a terminal illness and how extremely weird and profound and ordinary it can be.

I am so close to the subject matter that Bowler captures in this book that I have no idea how it would read to someone who isn't dug into the cancer experience. For my part, I had to star or underline practically every other paragraph as a perfect distillation of what I've been feeling. Still, I absolutely don't think you need to be impacted by a serious illness or loss to enjoy reading this book -- we are all human, after all. And the writing style is such a great combination of funny, insightful, and razor sharp that the book is very difficult to put down.

Take this paragraph that I had to star three times and then read out loud to my husband:

"It is a strange fact that sometimes the people who love you most will be among the first to stop worrying about you. An inflexible optimism stands as a barrier between you. You will be fine. Anything to the contrary seems too difficult to communicate. Pain is simultaneously intimate and distant, intense and boring. And, according to my rough calculations, any news, no matter how terrible, seems like old hat after about three months."

This is 100% true (if you are a person who loves me, don't let that hurt your feelings!), and the book is full of observations like this that distill the experience of living with a terminal diagnosis in a way that makes it infinitely less lonely and isolating. Her ability to weave observations on faith, academia, family, and a razor sharp view of the medical industry in and out of this intensely personal meditation on mortality is uplifting but never cliched and truly a joy to read. Highly recommended for all humans. ( )
  kristykay22 | Dec 26, 2021 |
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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER * The bestselling author of Everything Happens for a Reason (And Other Lies I've Loved) asks, how do you move forward with a life you didn't choose? "Kate Bowler is the only one we can trust to tell us the truth."--Glennon Doyle, author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Untamed It's hard to give up on the feeling that the life you really want is just out of reach. A beach body by summer. A trip to Disneyland around the corner. A promotion on the horizon. Everyone wants to believe that they are headed toward good, better, best. But what happens when the life you hoped for is put on hold indefinitely?  Kate Bowler believed that life was a series of unlimited choices, until she discovered, at age 35, that her body was wracked with cancer. In No Cure for Being Human, she searches for a way forward as she mines the wisdom (and absurdity) of today's "best life now" advice industry, which insists on exhausting positivity and on trying to convince us that we can out-eat, out-learn, and out-perform our humanness. We are, she finds, as fragile as the day we were born.  With dry wit and unflinching honesty, Kate Bowler grapples with her diagnosis, her ambition, and her faith as she tries to come to terms with her limitations in a culture that says anything is possible. She finds that we need one another if we're going to tell the truth: Life is beautiful and terrible, full of hope and despair and everything in between--and there's no cure for being human.

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