I thought there would be cake
Really honest book documenting the author's daily struggles, and the way she clings to God's promises
I Thought There Would Be Cake - navigating the ups and downs of life
By Katharine Welby-Roberts
Reviewed by: Simon Werrett
I thought there would be cake is not a book about cooking or even running, but Katharine’s reflections on her struggles within her life. It is a really honest book, with humour in places, as she lays open her life and the challenges she faces, often on a daily basis.
She starts the book sharing her aspiration for life, when as a child adulthood looked like a party with lots of cakes. Having arrived she finds out there is little cake, but a lot more other stuff to challenge you. It is clear that throughout the book, there is a conflict in her life between being accepted for who she is, against rejection because she does not meet other peoples perceived standards. The nine chapters deal with different areas of her life, the comparisons, the inner conflict, major crises and her perfectionist need to finish a task.
The book does focus on her mental health and she is honest about the battles she has with depression, anxiety and self worth. She speaks about the day after her wedding: she is sure it is all a mistake, but her mum manages to calm her down.
Katherine is a very articulate lady, with a degree in theology and a dad who is an Archbishop. However, there are some of the issues that have hindered her development, the expected standards at school of the ‘vicar’s daughter’. Interweaved through the book are incidents from childhood, which have later impacted on her adulthood, such as the favourite jersey which made her the laughing stock of the school.
Katharine deals with the issues of the world of social media, perhaps a generation Z issue, if I ‘tweet’ this will be liked, will it be ‘re-tweeted’ or perhaps rejected? She says ‘social media has been known to both boost my belief in my own self-belief and to destroy it.’
Throughout the book are weaved the questions we ask God and answers from the Bible. She highlights that even when her own self worth is diminished she clings to the promise that God says she is special, and has a plan for her life. She concludes the book by saying that she is settling into the belief that God created her for a purpose and she needs to trust him, without knowing all the information.
An interesting book to read, especially for those who suffer from mental health issues, but I would recommend sitting down to read it with a piece of cake.
Simon Werrett, BUGB Specialist Advisor and Senior Minister Eastwood Evangelical Church