Magical Journey: An Apprenticeship in Contentment (Paperback)
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"No longer indispensable, no longer assured of our old carefully crafted identities, no longer beautiful in the way we were at twenty or thirty or forty, we are hungry and searching nonetheless."
With the candor and warmth that have endeared her to readers, Kenison reflects on the inevitable changes wrought by time: the death of a dear friend, children leaving home, recognition of her own physical vulnerability, and surprising shifts in her marriage. She finds solace in the notion that midlife is also a time of unprecedented opportunity for growth as old roles and responsibilities fall away, and unanticipated possibilities appear on the horizon.
More a spiritual journey than a physical one, Kenison's beautifully crafted exploration begins and ends with a home, a life, a marriage. But this metamorphosis proves as demanding as any trek or pilgrimage to distant lands-it will guide and inspire every woman who finds herself asking: "What now?"
From 1990 until 2006, Kenison was the series editor of The Best American Short Stories, published annually by Houghton Mifflin. She co-edited, with John Updike, The Best American Short Stories of the Century (Houghton Mifflin, 2000). She wrote, with Rolf Gates, Meditations from the Mat: Daily Reflections on the Path of Yoga (Random House, 2002).
"Warm and wise. . . . Soul searching reflections by a woman coming to terms with the three major challenges of midlife: change, loss, and death." --Kirkus Reviews
"This luminous memoir is a gift to any reader searching for meaning, clarity, and perhaps a bit of hard-won joy. Katrina Kenison is the best kind of guide through our life's passages: a thoughtful, fearless friend who reaches out a hand and says, I've been here too." --Dani Shapiro, author of Devotion
"Katrina's beautiful observations on love, loss, growth and gratitude will brighten readers' worlds considerably. You won't find a better guide or friend to accompany you through the sorrows, joys, and mysteries we are all meant to share." -- Priscilla Warner, author of Learning to Breathe
"Deeply personal and gently instructive, this poignant memoir of loss and growth affirms that, in the ways that truly matter, we are all intimately connected, our humble human stories more alike than different." --Stephen Cope, author of The Great Work of Your Life: A Guide for the Journey to Your True Calling
"An extended meditation on a certain passage in life - one composed of loss and gain, deprivation and sustenance. She learns the way to relinquish old pleasures and to seek out new pathways. This is a guide that we all can use - warm, intelligent and compassionate." --Roxana Robinson, author of Cost
"No matter where you are on the journey, Kenison's own pilgrimage points the way home. She give us permission to stop trying to improve ourselves and invites us to relax into the wonder of who we already are." --Regina Brett, author of Be the Miracle
"Soul bared and hand extended, Kenison is right beside us as we, too, face life's next inexorable threshold: the elusive pursuit of self-acceptance." --Margaret Roach, author of The Backyard Parables
"After the kids are gone, Kenison faces the question that haunts every mother's empty house and every woman's passage beyond midlife. What now? Deeply wise and courageous, every page shines with beauty and pulses with truth. " --Karen Maezen Miller, author of Hand Wash Cold: Care Instructions for an Ordinary Life
"With clarity, honesty, and spirit, Kenison allows readers into the intimate work of self-discovery and renewal." --The Concord Monitor
"Moving . . . inspires readers to find their way in a world that can change in the blink of an eye." -Chicago Tribune
"Facing an empty nest, a friend's death, and changes at work, Kenison resists her usual antidote to unwanted change: keeping busy. Instead, she stops and takes stock of her life. It was so beautifully written, I wore out a yellow marker highlighting my favorite lines." --People magazine