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Creatrix Rising: Unlocking the Power of Midlife Women

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Ever since Eve was banned from the garden, women have endured the oftentimes painful and inaccurate definitions foisted upon them by the patriarchy. Maiden, mother, and crone, representing the three stages assigned to a woman’s life cycle, have been the limiting categories of both ancient and modern (neo-pagan) mythology. And one label in particular rankles: crone. The wor Ever since Eve was banned from the garden, women have endured the oftentimes painful and inaccurate definitions foisted upon them by the patriarchy. Maiden, mother, and crone, representing the three stages assigned to a woman’s life cycle, have been the limiting categories of both ancient and modern (neo-pagan) mythology. And one label in particular rankles: crone. The word conjures a wizened hag—useless for the most part, marginalized by appearance and ability. None of us has ever truly fit the old-crone image, and for today’s midlife women, a new archetype is being birthed: the creatrix. In Creatrix Rising, Stephanie Raffelock lays out—through personal stories and essays—the highlights of the past fifty years, in which women have gone from a quiet strength to a resounding voice. She invites us along on her own transformational journey by providing probing questions for reflection so that we can flesh out and bring to life this new archetype within ourselves. If what the Dalai Lama has predicted—that women will save the world—proves true, then the creatrix will for certain be out front, leading the pack.


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Ever since Eve was banned from the garden, women have endured the oftentimes painful and inaccurate definitions foisted upon them by the patriarchy. Maiden, mother, and crone, representing the three stages assigned to a woman’s life cycle, have been the limiting categories of both ancient and modern (neo-pagan) mythology. And one label in particular rankles: crone. The wor Ever since Eve was banned from the garden, women have endured the oftentimes painful and inaccurate definitions foisted upon them by the patriarchy. Maiden, mother, and crone, representing the three stages assigned to a woman’s life cycle, have been the limiting categories of both ancient and modern (neo-pagan) mythology. And one label in particular rankles: crone. The word conjures a wizened hag—useless for the most part, marginalized by appearance and ability. None of us has ever truly fit the old-crone image, and for today’s midlife women, a new archetype is being birthed: the creatrix. In Creatrix Rising, Stephanie Raffelock lays out—through personal stories and essays—the highlights of the past fifty years, in which women have gone from a quiet strength to a resounding voice. She invites us along on her own transformational journey by providing probing questions for reflection so that we can flesh out and bring to life this new archetype within ourselves. If what the Dalai Lama has predicted—that women will save the world—proves true, then the creatrix will for certain be out front, leading the pack.

49 review for Creatrix Rising: Unlocking the Power of Midlife Women

  1. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie Barko

    In a personal and genre-bending story, Stephanie Raffelock’s second book challenges the maiden-mother-crone archetype. Raffelock posits that the crone or old hag of yesteryear has given way to today’s creatrix, a woman who is “constantly becoming” as part of the first generation “in which women talked of choices.” The creatrix sees age as an asset rather than a burden and looks to her midlife years and beyond as a time of creative potential. No longer buying into a male definition of who we ar In a personal and genre-bending story, Stephanie Raffelock’s second book challenges the maiden-mother-crone archetype. Raffelock posits that the crone or old hag of yesteryear has given way to today’s creatrix, a woman who is “constantly becoming” as part of the first generation “in which women talked of choices.” The creatrix sees age as an asset rather than a burden and looks to her midlife years and beyond as a time of creative potential. No longer buying into a male definition of who we are, we experience a midlife awakening instead of a midlife crisis. Paying homage to her forebears, Raffelock closes her eyes to “feel the long line of ancestral women who stand behind me.” Early chapters begin with Stephanie’s recollection of her mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. Being a genealogy buff, I was immediately drawn in, traveling back in time with six-year-old Stephanie to her grandmother’s “last house on a long ribbon of [Colorado] highway…”. In Part II, Raffelock asserts that the 2017 Women’s March revealed what was left unresolved from the sexual revolution of the sixties. Several decades later during Me Too, Stephanie takes her employer to court for hostile work environment and discovers that even women colleagues may abandon you when you challenge the status quo. In Part III, the author wraps up with a discussion of four aspects of the creatrix—Artist, Healer, Teacher, and Illuminator. From a woman who illuminates her way, Stephanie learns how to deal with grief and sorry, then ascending “the path of purpose” to become a wise elder. She says, “We can’t fully grow up without love or a feeling of belonging.” This story grabbed me from the beginning. I liked its memoirish start and agreed with its sociological conclusions. If “soul work is what we are called to do as we get older”, then I’m all in. I received an ARC of this book from the author and received no compensation in exchange for my review.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Heather

    (This review can be found on my blog All the Ups and Downs.) -- There was something about the synopsis of Creatrix Rising by Stephanie Raffelock that really sucked me in. When I read it, I knew that it was a book I would fall in love with. I wasn't wrong! Creatrix Rising is full of great anecdotes. Reading them, I really felt like I was getting to know the author. Stephanie Raffelock does not hold back in some of the stories which helps to make her book all the more real. While reading, I felt as i (This review can be found on my blog All the Ups and Downs.) -- There was something about the synopsis of Creatrix Rising by Stephanie Raffelock that really sucked me in. When I read it, I knew that it was a book I would fall in love with. I wasn't wrong! Creatrix Rising is full of great anecdotes. Reading them, I really felt like I was getting to know the author. Stephanie Raffelock does not hold back in some of the stories which helps to make her book all the more real. While reading, I felt as if Stephanie stripped herself down to her soul for me to see and bared it all especially while reading about her time as a teenager in Los Angeles. Reading Creatrix Rising made me want to actually meet Stephanie Raffelock because she just seems like such an inspiration and an amazing woman! In fact, reading some of what happened in Stephanie's life sort of paralleled mine. Stephanie Raffelock does a fantastic job at describing what a "creatrix" is. She writes "Creatrix is a distinctly feminine word that simply means a woman who makes things." Raffelock says the world creatrix should replace crone which has such a negative connotation, and I agree! From there, Raffelock gives us plenty of personal stories about different women she has come across in her life that fit the creatrix characteristics. In each story, I felt like I was getting to know these women. I wanted to know these women. Stephanie Raffelock's writing is so beautiful and descriptive. It's hard not to feel like her stories are yours. In fact, it was difficult to not picture different women in my life that fit the bill of a creatrix. I put this down to Raffelock's wonderful writing. She definitely knows how to get her point across in such a sweet and beautiful way. Raffelock also teaches us that there is no shame in getting older and how we really should embrace aging as it's not a bad thing at all but quite the opposite. Another thing I really loved about Creatrix Rising is at the end of each chapter, there is a section entitled "For Reflection, Activity, and Journaling." This section summarizes the main point of each chapter and asks a few in depth questions for the reader to ponder on. Be prepared to have a journal next to you because you will want to answer these questions. They will really make you think long and hard and look deeper into yourself and others. It's such a great and relaxing mental exercise. At the end of the book, if you decide to write down your answers to Stephanie Raffelock's questions, you will have your own little mini book either to keep for yourself or to share with others. If you need a little bit of help, Raffelock lists some fantastic resources to help you on your journey. I also feel that these questions would be great for a book group's discussion if this was a book picked for a book group which I would totally recommend that! If you decide to read Creatrix Rising (which you really should), here's my personal advice. Do NOT skip the epilogue. Stephanie Raffelock says that she wrote this book in 2020 when the Corona Virus had just really taken off. Raffelock's epilogue for Creatrix Rising is all about the Corona Virus, but she uses symbolism painting the Corona Virus as a beautiful woman that takes everyone by surprise. My jaw was on the floor the whole time I was reading the epilogue. Again, Raffelock's talent for writing really did shine through in her epilogue. I would have never thought to compare Corona Virus to a beautiful woman, but reading Stephanie's story, I realized just how right she was. Trigger warnings for Creatrix Rising include profanity, some drug use, death, some violence, and some politics. All in all, Creatrix Rising is a beautiful masterpiece of a book that will leave its reader thinking of all the women in their life that they have come across and how these women have affected them. Although this book mentions unlocking the power of midlife women, I really think men would enjoy it just as much as they also think about the women that have touched their lives. I would definitely recommend Creatrix Rising by Stephanie Raffelock to everyone aged 18+ who are after a beautifully written book that will really make them think. -- (A special thank you to Lone Star Literary Life and Stephanie Raffelock for providing me with a hardcover of Creatrix Rising in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.)

  3. 5 out of 5

    Julie

    Here I am, well into my late 30s, concerned about what my 40s might look like.  While that's not midlife yet, time moves fast. One of the things I first loved about this book was how the author redefines womanhood and age. We're throwing out the old crone reference, with its connotation of dried up and useless old woman, and bringing out the new term for older woman: Creatrix. She's creative, giving, kind, wise, open to reinvention. She's on a journey to redefine and get to know herself again as Here I am, well into my late 30s, concerned about what my 40s might look like.  While that's not midlife yet, time moves fast. One of the things I first loved about this book was how the author redefines womanhood and age. We're throwing out the old crone reference, with its connotation of dried up and useless old woman, and bringing out the new term for older woman: Creatrix. She's creative, giving, kind, wise, open to reinvention. She's on a journey to redefine and get to know herself again as she is changing. She's her own heroine, but also, she's connected to the women who came before her. I enjoyed the stories of the author feeling connected with her ancestors, even those women who lived long before she was even born. How she felt the bond, the spirit of the Creatrix, passed through her family to the next woman. She shares that people touch our lives to teach us something, and if they don't stay long, that's ok. Let them go, feel that connection, and carry those memories and lessons. Women find a way. We all have a herone who lives inside of us. We all have a story to tell. Telling our stories liberates us to love ourselves and command respect in the world. The Creatrix inside is on a heroine's journey to success and strength and launching a legacy. She's run out of bashfulness and fear that might have held her back as a young woman. She now breaks through the fear to the celebration of growth on the other side. I enjoyed all the uplifting stories and gentle nudges to grow to reach the reader's full potential - your full potential. My full potential. The book is both a memoir and a guided journey through your own womanhood. Each chapter shares a piece of the author's experiences, stories of women of past and present, sharing their teachings and joy. Then between each chapter (a chapter break, if you will) is a journaling prompt. A set of questions to take you on a tour of self-discovery, to discover the lessons in parallel to the stories you just read about. It's not just a memoir. It's not just a self-help book. It's so much more - more connecting with others who you haven't even met in person, more personal development, more understanding. While growing older is unkind to our bodies and appearance, it makes room for more heart, more understanding, and more connection. It allows us to forgive our past, and to embrace our future. Because just like our bodies, time changes and life makes room for reinvention. I think the most important takeaway from reading Creatrix Rising is to approach life with a wider focus. Attack each obstacle like a wise and brilliant Creatrix, full of memories and support from your fellow women. Look within but also outside yourself for inspiration and experience. That even if you feel alone, you're never really alone. You've always had the creatrix in your heart and mind. Thanks to author Stephanie Raffelock and Lone Star Book Blog Tours for providing this opportunity to review Creatrix Rising. I received the novel free as part of this book tour.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

    Maiden, Mother, Crone. The three archetypal stages of a woman’s life. The Maiden is young and fair, blooming with life and potential. The Mother is nurturing and giving. And the Crone? Well, we all know what people think of her. Dried up, not much use anymore, withering away to the end of life. In Creatrix Rising, Stephanie Raffelock is here to smash the Crone archetype to smithereens. In the Crone’s place, Raffelock proposes the Creatrix. “Unlike the Crone, the Creatrix is no haggard old woman of Maiden, Mother, Crone. The three archetypal stages of a woman’s life. The Maiden is young and fair, blooming with life and potential. The Mother is nurturing and giving. And the Crone? Well, we all know what people think of her. Dried up, not much use anymore, withering away to the end of life. In Creatrix Rising, Stephanie Raffelock is here to smash the Crone archetype to smithereens. In the Crone’s place, Raffelock proposes the Creatrix. “Unlike the Crone, the Creatrix is no haggard old woman of the forest. She has the radiant beauty we all seek, that of wisdom, compassion, courage, and strength. She is the witness that holds the lamp to illuminate the path the younger women behind her will traverse. The Creatrix is the pinnacle of a woman’s life.” I’m a middle-aged woman myself. I’m a bit of an oddball in that I’m still in the parenting years in my 50s. I have two boys, 19 and 12, so they’re not quite grown and flown – I’m the oldest mom in the 7th grade class. Even so, in middle age, the idea that my best years are behind me has never set well with me. Growing up, I knew many older women who were graceful and confident, living their best lives. So why does society expect women to shrink and dwindle? Are we useless once we’re no longer able to contribute to the continuation of the species? I think not. Raffelock’s Creatrix, introduced to us through stories and personal anecdotes, is no shriveled hag. She is a woman full of vitality and creativity, life and grace. Raffelock walks us through some of her own experiences that led her to conclude that there was a need for a new archetype. Her insights and experiences help me think of my own life in a new light. I like the way the book is divided, and I like that it looks at the Creatrix in different aspects: Teacher, Healer, Illuminator, Artist. We’re all different, and it makes sense that that continues into our later years. I also like the questions for reflection, activity, and journaling. I read through the book straight through the first time, but I’ll be going back and working through all those questions. I love the message of the book, that life isn’t winding down just because we’re at or past the midpoint of our lives. I kept hearing Helen Reddy’s “I Am Woman, Hear Me Roar” as I was reading. I highly recommend this book for any woman who’s starting to feel less than because she isn’t a pretty young thing anymore. It’ll give you a much-needed new direction and new outlook on growing older and living with purpose. Five stars from me!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jeanne Guy

    Stephanie Raffelock has an ability to speak to and relate to women through her excellent storytelling abilities, her honest assessment of her own faux pas, and her belief in the power and privilege of being a woman. She shifts our thinking from "wrapping ourselves in the myth of insignificance" to celebrating ourselves and claiming our voices. Based on the wisdom provided from page one forward, this is an important book for my 16-year-old granddaughter as well as my 85-year-old sister. The metap Stephanie Raffelock has an ability to speak to and relate to women through her excellent storytelling abilities, her honest assessment of her own faux pas, and her belief in the power and privilege of being a woman. She shifts our thinking from "wrapping ourselves in the myth of insignificance" to celebrating ourselves and claiming our voices. Based on the wisdom provided from page one forward, this is an important book for my 16-year-old granddaughter as well as my 85-year-old sister. The metaphoric epilogue is nothing less than masterful.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Lorilei Gonzales

    To be completely honest, I have no idea where to begin when describing the effect that Creatrix Rising by Stephanie Raffelock has had on me. I can tell you that my initial thoughts were: (1) pretty cover, clearly a book on female empowerment; (2) Creatrix – that’s a cool word; and (3) Unlocking the Power of Midlife Women – I’m almost to midlife, so let’s do this! I’m going to say some things that seem completely contradictory, but I hope that you will stay with me. This book was everything that I To be completely honest, I have no idea where to begin when describing the effect that Creatrix Rising by Stephanie Raffelock has had on me. I can tell you that my initial thoughts were: (1) pretty cover, clearly a book on female empowerment; (2) Creatrix – that’s a cool word; and (3) Unlocking the Power of Midlife Women – I’m almost to midlife, so let’s do this! I’m going to say some things that seem completely contradictory, but I hope that you will stay with me. This book was everything that I expected from it yet so much more at the same time. I figured that this book would be written from the perspective of an older and wiser woman with the aim to motivate middle-aged women to fulfill their hidden potential. I was curious about this potential, so I dived in looking for these answers. What I found was something different and, dare I say, better. It could be a coincidence, but I think that the universe has been working in mysterious ways for me lately. Today, my brother told me about a Harvard study which stated that females pass down mitochondria to only their female offspring. Which prompted my mother to add that people who claim to be Jewish are only really Jewish if their mother is. So, of course, I had to add a really cool genetic nesting doll idea that I came across years ago about how since females have all of the eggs that they will ever have in their lifetime in their bodies, then I was already inside of my very first female ancestor however many years ago that was. You’re probably thinking, “Cool, but what does that have to do with anything?” Raffelock talks about how she has “felt her ancestors walking with her, whispering to her.” She is “not the only woman who feels connected to the spiritual DNA of her ancestors, the ancient women who sang ancient songs.” I truly believe that it is this science and spirituality that makes women special and something to truly celebrate. So yes, Raffelock is a mature woman who likes to motivate women, but that is not the only thing she does in this book. She shares stories that demonstrate different struggles that women face, whether during the 1930s or the current Coronavirus pandemic, and leaves us with the inspiration to find the answers or solutions for ourselves, using the path of those before us as a guide, but not necessarily as a turn-by-turn map. She encourages connection, especially with other women, but she subscribes to the notion that there are sometimes people who come into your life for a reason or a season. So do not despair over what you think you may have lost, whether that is some object, a person, or even some former version of yourself. Creatrix Rising is a call to action, for women to set aside the idea that even though your reproductive years are behind you, that doesn’t mean that you can’t create. As a soon-to-be-divorced woman on the cusp of midlife, I am inspired to take my destiny in my own hands and find the path to my creative calling. For such a short book, there is so much ground covered and really great questions and writing prompts at the end of each chapter that can help you sort through your thoughts and goals. If you are a woman who struggles with some obstacle in your life, whether it’s a job or relationship issue, a deep-seated insecurity, or a general feeling of not knowing what to do next; I think that this book can shed some light on various paths that you might consider exploring. Even if it means just meandering a different path in your mind before committing to making new moves. That’s sort of the point of sharing experiences with other people, and both accepting and giving the gift of experience by living vicariously through each other. I am really surprised that this book was written and published during the pandemic. It is very well thought out and the prose is beautiful like poetry. Not to mention, the whole package is pristine: from the beautiful cover art, to the nicely constructed hardcover, to the impeccable editing. While obviously timely, I think that this book is also timeless. It has earned a permanent spot on my bookshelf and will be referenced at various intervals in my life. Not to mention, I will definitely share it with other women as well.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Leslie aka StoreyBook Reviews

    Creatrix - an artist, a healer, a teacher, an illuminator. Stephanie Raffelock knows how to encourage women and remind us that life doesn't stop as we get older. While many of us probably know that deep down, it can be hard with what we see in the media and it seems that we are being pushed aside for younger women. The funny thing is that this only really happens in the US. Why is that? Why do other countries embrace women of all ages but not us? I believe that there is a shift happening with tha Creatrix - an artist, a healer, a teacher, an illuminator. Stephanie Raffelock knows how to encourage women and remind us that life doesn't stop as we get older. While many of us probably know that deep down, it can be hard with what we see in the media and it seems that we are being pushed aside for younger women. The funny thing is that this only really happens in the US. Why is that? Why do other countries embrace women of all ages but not us? I believe that there is a shift happening with that mindset but it has been too long in coming in my opinion. This book is a combination of a memoir and a self-help book. Stephanie shares many stories about her life and family; in fact, she tells us that she is a storyteller and is especially interested in stories about women. I was quite surprised by some of the tales of her life because I never would have expected to learn how she ended up in Los Angeles at 17 and had to figure out how to make it on her own. The other stories she shares are inspirational and might even give the reader pause to reflect on the story and wonder if they had found themselves in a similar situation or how they might have reacted. I found each story to be inspirational but also a period of reflection about these women and what they achieved in their lives and how they shared it with others. We have all heard the term crone and I think most of us would picture a shriveled up older woman, hunched over, and not very attractive. Sort of like what you think of from fairy tales and other children's books. However, the term has been used to describe older women since the 1400s and really doesn't apply to women of today that are out conquering the world in their chosen roles in life. Much like the Helen Reddy song, they are women, hear them roar. I love how Stephanie has found a better word to describe women - Creatrix. This is a word that is already in existence that is feminine and means a woman who makes things, a creator. As I reveled in each story set forth, it gave me time to reflect upon my own life and wondered if I was living my life to its fullest potential. I think that all of us can do more and get out of our rut and this book is one way to move us forward on that path. Reflecting on each story and then the reflection suggestions/questions at the end of chapters, we might all learn something new about ourselves and seek to become a Creatrix in our own lives. There are so many wonderful lines to take away from this book, but these few are some of my favorite lines: "That's what we learn to do when we hit midlife: we start harmonizing with our younger selves." "...none of us escape the presence of grief in our lives and we handle it each in our own way, whether it's alcohol or a garden of saints." "Living life on your own terms is mid-life awakening." This book is one that could be read over and over especially when it comes to the reflections at the end of each chapter. It is a wonderful starting place for us to reflect on who we are and what has made us who we are today. My only negative comment about this book is the political commentary at the beginning of one of the chapters. While there is a small part that leads into the chapter, most of it was not relevant or necessary and could be a turnoff to those reading the book. Overall, we give this 4 1/2 paws.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Maida

    One of my top reads of 2021 When you feel that a book is about you and written specially for you, it is impossible not to rave about it. Stephanie Raffelock’s beautifully-written, mindset-shifting Creatrix Rising is one such book and this is a glowing review of it. This early, I’m declaring it one of my Top 21 Reads of 2021. I wholeheartedly embrace the move to redefine the archetype of midlife women from the dismal, joyless, and manmade Crone to the powerful, aspirational, and woman-made Creatrix One of my top reads of 2021 When you feel that a book is about you and written specially for you, it is impossible not to rave about it. Stephanie Raffelock’s beautifully-written, mindset-shifting Creatrix Rising is one such book and this is a glowing review of it. This early, I’m declaring it one of my Top 21 Reads of 2021. I wholeheartedly embrace the move to redefine the archetype of midlife women from the dismal, joyless, and manmade Crone to the powerful, aspirational, and woman-made Creatrix. That’s not only my vanity talking but also my common sense. It’s obvious by their definitions which personification is preferable. In laying out her own transformation, Ms. Raffelock shared deeply personal stories and meaningful relationships throughout her life. I found many of them incredibly affecting and inspiring, especially the ones about her grandmother Julia and her mother Cleo. She hinted at past pains but never delved too much in the mistakes and regrets. Rather, she celebrated the learnings she gleaned from them. While fiercely feminist and giving much of the spotlight on the incredible women who helped shape her, Stephanie was fair in acknowledging several men who have contributed in her journey of growth and self-awareness. I liked that. I also really liked the tone of positivity, of optimism in the book. Even when touching on divisive political topics, Ms. Raffelock kept her focus on opportunities and triumphs instead of dwelling on injustices and casting blames. The sections on reflection, activity, and journaling are some of my favorite parts of the book. They’re interactive. They’re where the reader is invited to relate what they’d read to their own life, to think of people who made an impact, to remember experiences and interactions, and to tell their stories. Creatrix Rising is easy to read. The language is profound but understandable, not clinical or highfalutin. Some parts are highly evocative, some are factual. Definitions are repeated for emphasis. The organization flows with purpose and intent. The book is immensely quotable. I am glad I have two copies because one (the eBook) is covered in highlighted passages. Some of my favorites are: “The way we envision older women needs to be altered to reflect the evolution of our continuing liberation and growing self-awareness, equality, and confidence.” “When I’m trying to uplevel my game, it helps to name what I hope to achieve and then claim that achievement. Name it and claim it.” “Women find a way. We all have a heroine who lives inside of us. We all have a story to tell. Telling our stories liberates us to love ourselves and command respect in the world.” “Embrace the beauty and grace of age and its gifts of wisdom. Make life on your own terms. You are never too old to dream, to participate, to engage. Uplift other women. Tell your story. You are at the front of the line now. Hold your light high, and be proud of who you are and who you are still becoming. Accept the mantle of Creatrix, and celebrate the goodness and grace that it holds.”

  9. 4 out of 5

    Jennie Rosenblum

    Being a woman whose 50th birthday is well back in the rearview mirror, this book struck a chord with me. The fact that the author is also an Austin transplant helped add it to my to-be-read pile. While physically it is a slim volume, it is filled and overflowing with the content. As I started to read, I felt as if the book was a memoir. But then I realized that there were so many aspects that related directly to my life. I have created and re-created my life, and now I am thinking about this nex Being a woman whose 50th birthday is well back in the rearview mirror, this book struck a chord with me. The fact that the author is also an Austin transplant helped add it to my to-be-read pile. While physically it is a slim volume, it is filled and overflowing with the content. As I started to read, I felt as if the book was a memoir. But then I realized that there were so many aspects that related directly to my life. I have created and re-created my life, and now I am thinking about this next step. I have always celebrated the next adventure but frankly, to quote Nora Ephron’s book title (that the author also mentions) I Feel Bad About My Neck – as well as other less than youthful parts. I was hoping that this book would give me all the answers. It did not – because it could not. What it did do, however is open up a path for me. Through life stories and gentle guiding (ok sometimes I need a sledgehammer!), as well as chapter ending action items, the author showed me the way to make this next adventure a positive experience. I highly suggest that this is a book to buy in paper form and (hey all you other librarians may want to skip the rest of this sentence) write in as you go. You will want to refer back and re-read to reinforce ideas and your own path. One of the last chapters, 16, ends with this quote that will be printed and placed on my desk: “Do your soul work. Embrace the beauty and grace of age and its gifts of wisdom. Make life on your own terms. You are never too old to dream, to participate, to engage.” Friends and future friends who are reading this – join me – continue to create and be a powerful presence in our world. I’ll be the one dancing – join me!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Destiny Bridwell

    I received a copy of this book for a fair and honest review. This book was broken up into four different sections. I was excited that the archetype of the crone was replaces with Creatrix. I got the impression this was all about women's empowerment and the coming together of women. That they are no longer remaining silence but using their voices for the betterment of the world. This just made me feel good as a woman. It did give me the feeling that this is only the start of a journey like this o I received a copy of this book for a fair and honest review. This book was broken up into four different sections. I was excited that the archetype of the crone was replaces with Creatrix. I got the impression this was all about women's empowerment and the coming together of women. That they are no longer remaining silence but using their voices for the betterment of the world. This just made me feel good as a woman. It did give me the feeling that this is only the start of a journey like this one. It makes me want to look into archetypes and more on this subject.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Jenn Belden

    At 53, as I am very much the perfect target audience - deep in the throes of a finally-acknowledged midlife crisis of sorts. It was the kind where you realize that you still don’t know what you want to be when you grow up, but, as Raffelock points out, you’ve realized that more years of your life are behind you than are likely ahead of you. It was a bit sobering to see it acknowledged. It was wonderful to be inspired and encouraged that there is more out there for us, if we only dream it and grab At 53, as I am very much the perfect target audience - deep in the throes of a finally-acknowledged midlife crisis of sorts. It was the kind where you realize that you still don’t know what you want to be when you grow up, but, as Raffelock points out, you’ve realized that more years of your life are behind you than are likely ahead of you. It was a bit sobering to see it acknowledged. It was wonderful to be inspired and encouraged that there is more out there for us, if we only dream it and grab on to it. Raffelock briefly outlines the “traditional” stages of life that women are categorized in: Maiden, Mother, and Crone. I, like the author, have never been fond of the word or idea of older women as the “crone” – that smacks of a woman past her use-by date, old, withered, and maybe a little bitter or angry and most definitely tired. In lieu of the idea of “the Crone”, she proposes a new archetype: the Creatrix. Now, this is a concept I can get behind. his is about reinventing ourselves, a time for leadership, creativity, and a new stage in life – not a final stage. The Creatrix isn’t a tired old woman. She’s powerful, inspirational, and it’s a time of opportunity. This should be intuitive, but apparently it isn’t, or else I wouldn’t find myself in the state I’m in, and for that, I have great appreciation for the reflections, activities, and journal prompts at the end of each chapter. I did not get the opportunity to do any journalling as I read the book the first time, but I’ve dog-eared all the journalling sections (it’s my book, so hush) so that I can go back and revisit them and do the real work. I definitely appreciated her honest words around menopause, as while childbirth is discussed and written about profusely, menopause seems to be a topic that many avoid and is shrouded in mystery. She turns the tables on what we are told, and frames it as such: “…Menopause is a great spiritual awakening, filled with the rich, dark mud of creativity. The myth of insignificance is not the truth, and all around us we see women rising above those worn-out attitudes, creating new, more beneficial attitudes in their wake.” Creatrix Rising is a book is filled with anecdotes, some relatable, some surprising, and definitely a bit philosophical. All in all, her words are thought provoking and serve well to support her new definition of women’s third stage in life as the Creatrix. The gift in this book is also Raffelock’s storytelling. It is honest and raw, lyrical and beautiful. She is the embodiment of the Creatrix archetype she seeks to redefine. Despite the different paths our lives have taken, her stories were also relatable. For me, in particular, her story of losing her voice hit deeply, (hers more literally, while mine is more figuratively) but it was a punch in the gut. It instilled me with the hope that I will soon find mine again, too – and perhaps revealed why I might have lost it. Raffelock’s gift for storytelling could not be better demonstrated than in her epilogue, which is not to be missed. The book was written during the Covid-19 pandemic, and in the epilogue she shares a tale that personifies the pandemic as a beautiful woman who reveals who we truly are as a society. She’s not wrong that much more than illness was brought to light over the past 18-20 months, but what has come out of it is also determination to make the world a better place, to share our voices. I’m also encouraged by both the contents of this small but mighty book as well as the idea of midlife being a time for reinvention and reimagination. Midlife and beyond for women today is vastly different from that of our grandmothers, and this book is affirmation that we have so much more to offer. This would be a wonderful book for book groups. I highly recommend it for women of all ages, be it the one eying her thirties with trepidation, those in approaching or in the midst of middle age, and those beyond but still young in spirit and heart.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Story Circle Book Reviews

    Creatrix Rising is a celebration of the later years of women. Instead of allowing our traditionally male-dominant society to define older women as “crones” or “washed up” and useless, Raffelock suggests a new archetype for ourselves: creatrix. Raffelock defines creatrix as “a woman who makes things.” As the world tries to define us, the creatrix insists on defining herself and refuses to contort to fit into someone else’s box. Creatrix Rising is less a self-help book and more a manual on how to Creatrix Rising is a celebration of the later years of women. Instead of allowing our traditionally male-dominant society to define older women as “crones” or “washed up” and useless, Raffelock suggests a new archetype for ourselves: creatrix. Raffelock defines creatrix as “a woman who makes things.” As the world tries to define us, the creatrix insists on defining herself and refuses to contort to fit into someone else’s box. Creatrix Rising is less a self-help book and more a manual on how to share our personal experiences as women in a historically patriarchal society. In fact, it is in the creatrix years that we are able to look at where we have been, slow down, and make our own new path where we want to go. It is a time for reflection on what our society and families expected from us and who we want to and should be. It is when we finally learn that we don’t have to constantly please others, but that we can actually serve others better by being true to ourselves. When we are confident and live authentically, we can bring joy to the world. When we let go of societal expectations, possibilities are endless, and we have more to offer ourselves and others. We are also healthier, both physically and mentally. Society itself is healthier too. Women have a habit of worrying about what others might think. We are taught to fit a certain mold and if we don’t then we are less feminine. But that femininity is defined by others, not us. The more we share our personal experiences and see the commonalities, the more we can shape the world to suit us both individually and as a group. Raffelock looks at our individual feminist journeys through the lens of Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Journey and believes that we should each own our personal stories. Midlife and menopause traditionally have been viewed as a negative experience, as a “crisis,” as women becoming “lesser;” but Raffelock prefers the phrase “midlife awakening.” From my own experience, “midlife awakening” is more accurate. It is a time when we wake up to our full potentials. We finally break from the cocoon and become the butterflies we are meant to be. Each chapter culminates with journaling activities and questions for reflection. Working through this book and using the Hero’s Journey as a scaffold, we can share our individual experiences, writing our own histories and taking charge of ourselves. As we share our personal experiences of womanhood, we see just how similar our stories are. We finally see how much we have in common. Raffelock’s personal journey, for example, is quite different from my own on the surface, but look a little deeper and we find common themes such as abandonment, abuse, self-esteem, dependence, and loneliness. To varying degrees, as second-class-citizens, we have all dealt with these issues and we are only recently speaking out about them. In fact, feminism is personal. When we stop behavior that does not serve us, when we stop devaluing ourselves, when we begin to set boundaries and develop self-respect, we are feminists. When we all do these things, not only will we respect ourselves and each other, but society as a whole will begin to change and know our power. To quote Virginia Woolf: “A feminist is any woman who tells the truth about her life.” Story Circle Book Reviews thanks Regina Allen for this review.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Christena

    “Practice setting boundaries for yourself as an act of self-love. Know that confidence, believing in yourself, and strength are the result of practice.” Time is interwoven in so many ways. The fates or the universe always seem to find a way of sending you what you need at a moment in time. Creatrix Rising is just what I needed. This book helped me understand that by me recently saying no is not the end of the world. Yet, her book is so much more. At the beginning of this book, Stephanie Raffelock “Practice setting boundaries for yourself as an act of self-love. Know that confidence, believing in yourself, and strength are the result of practice.” Time is interwoven in so many ways. The fates or the universe always seem to find a way of sending you what you need at a moment in time. Creatrix Rising is just what I needed. This book helped me understand that by me recently saying no is not the end of the world. Yet, her book is so much more. At the beginning of this book, Stephanie Raffelock brings up “What is Past is Prologue.” I fondly recall that quote beaming from the side of the National Archives Building in Washington, D.C. When I saw it, I knew it was important and took a photograph of it. After reading Creatrix Rising I realize that that statement I took notice of a few years ago is basically the underlying theme for her book. Women should be evolving to become better than we were in our 30s and 40s. Technically becoming better should be every woman’s goal. How Stephanie evolved over the years she shares with readers in baring truths that most women would avoid uttering out loud except to their closest friends. That’s the beauty of this book – it shows women that accepting your past, talking about it, and evolving to become better is what is supposed to happen. A friend and I were discussing religion and the Bible just recently. The fates stepped in again and I laughed out loud while reading a chapter in this book. It is great knowing that my friend, Ginny is not the only person who believes that the Bible stories are just morality guidelines. After each chapter, Stephanie provides a follow-up area for readers to delve into personal practice on reflecting, activities, and journaling you can do at your own pace. The word “Creatrix” means a woman who makes things. Celebrating the stories, both good and bad, that shaped us as women is the core of this book. This timely book helped me understand that putting up boundaries is okay. That both my good and bad stories have shaped my thoughts, my personality, and my resilience. None of us understand anything really when we are younger. Creatrix Rising is the perfect book for women ages 30 – 80 to help you become and create the woman you want to be.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Kristine Hall

    We weave together tales of our past and present, helping us make sense of the ideal we strive for: the freedom to do life on our own terms. Reading Stephanie Raffelock's book -- part memoir, part call to action -- was so powerful and empowering. Her fascinating life stories, and how she learned and grew from them, force the reader to reflect upon her own life stories and the people who helped mold her into what she is today. Raffelock reminds us that we can break those molds at any time or stretc We weave together tales of our past and present, helping us make sense of the ideal we strive for: the freedom to do life on our own terms. Reading Stephanie Raffelock's book -- part memoir, part call to action -- was so powerful and empowering. Her fascinating life stories, and how she learned and grew from them, force the reader to reflect upon her own life stories and the people who helped mold her into what she is today. Raffelock reminds us that we can break those molds at any time or stretch them to fit who we want to be. But more importantly, Raffelock shows how women all have the potential to evolve and take their rightful places in the world by throwing out the horrible accepted norms and definitions of mid-life women. I'm past the mid-life point, and Raffelock's pointed (and more subtle) questions she poses for self-reflection are ones I will keep revisiting as I continue to reinvent myself and grow. Highly recommend CREATRIX RISING for ages 40+ women -- and for the men who are in their lives. This mini-review and more special features on Hall Ways Blog.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Valeria Teles

    “The Creatrix weaves the qualities of creativity, courage, self-love, and acceptance along with the practice of gratitude into a pattern that is reshaping the collective consciousness of older women…” Creatrix Rising is an invitation to us women to access our own power within and give birth to a new reality we all wish to live in. Stephanie’s own transformational journey reminds us of what is possible, how we can embody the Creatrix, and ultimately, how to realize freedom. This is a Must-Read boo “The Creatrix weaves the qualities of creativity, courage, self-love, and acceptance along with the practice of gratitude into a pattern that is reshaping the collective consciousness of older women…” Creatrix Rising is an invitation to us women to access our own power within and give birth to a new reality we all wish to live in. Stephanie’s own transformational journey reminds us of what is possible, how we can embody the Creatrix, and ultimately, how to realize freedom. This is a Must-Read book for anyone who is ready to uncover the joy and delight of their own feminine wisdom through grace and transcendent awareness. It was another beautiful experience to have a conversation with Stephanie Raffelock during a podcast interview! Her fun, loving and wise presence continues to inspire!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Linda

    I was surprised at the amount of memoir/personal stories the author weaves into her thesis of older woman as creatrix. It made the book a real pageturner for me. I'm way into the creatrix phase of life, and even participated in a group croning ceremony. This book was all the more meaningful for the author's decision to toss out that old term and replace it with something so much more powerful. Her personal stories illustrate her own journey from maiden to creatrix, and she includes journaling pr I was surprised at the amount of memoir/personal stories the author weaves into her thesis of older woman as creatrix. It made the book a real pageturner for me. I'm way into the creatrix phase of life, and even participated in a group croning ceremony. This book was all the more meaningful for the author's decision to toss out that old term and replace it with something so much more powerful. Her personal stories illustrate her own journey from maiden to creatrix, and she includes journaling prompts for the reader. This is a book that will resonate with women at midlife and beyond.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

    BookWoman is holding a book launch event on Zoon as part of their Getting to Know The Goddess series: Facebook Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/52106... website events: https://www.ebookwoman.com/event BookWoman is holding a book launch event on Zoon as part of their Getting to Know The Goddess series: Facebook Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/52106... website events: https://www.ebookwoman.com/event

  18. 4 out of 5

    Lone Star Literary Life

    Featured on Lone Star Book Blog Tours. Lone Star Blogger Team average rating: 4.954. Featured on Lone Star Book Blog Tours. Lone Star Blogger Team average rating: 4.954.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Ruthie Jones

  20. 4 out of 5

    Sue Loncaric

  21. 5 out of 5

    MELISSA CORTEZ

  22. 4 out of 5

    Books Forward

  23. 5 out of 5

    Mary Schoemann

  24. 5 out of 5

    Siobhan

  25. 4 out of 5

    Valerie Taylor

  26. 4 out of 5

    Carolyn Lee Arnold

  27. 5 out of 5

    Melissa Harris

  28. 5 out of 5

    Rachel Michelberg

  29. 5 out of 5

    Beth

  30. 5 out of 5

    Signe Myers

  31. 4 out of 5

    Denise Larson

  32. 5 out of 5

    Emma Megan

  33. 5 out of 5

    Katarina

  34. 4 out of 5

    Micielle

  35. 4 out of 5

    Deborah Gerhart

  36. 4 out of 5

    Melissa ahmed

  37. 4 out of 5

    Doris Moore

  38. 4 out of 5

    Brenda Maki

  39. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

  40. 5 out of 5

    Carol Burye

  41. 5 out of 5

    Jimmy

  42. 4 out of 5

    Pam

  43. 5 out of 5

    Johnna

  44. 4 out of 5

    Bismah

  45. 5 out of 5

    Faith From TBRP Blog

  46. 4 out of 5

    Edward

  47. 5 out of 5

    Jess Ellstrom

  48. 4 out of 5

    Carol

  49. 4 out of 5

    Apick

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