2:20 p.m. on a Saturday and I’m having trouble keeping my eyes open. Haven’t slept well this past week. Thursday saw me knocked down with a wicked migraine, which is bad enough on its own, but some delightful panic attacks at 10:30 p.m., 12:18 a.m., and 3:05 a.m. made the pain so much worse. Why the panic?, you wonder. Down to faulty brain wiring. I flung the blankets off of me each time and fairly jumped from the bed, awakened by internal alarm bells tripped for no reason, ready to fight.
But yesterday was busy, full of things like volunteering and having lunch with a new friend, so I dragged myself away from the cocoon, despite still feeling tempted to rip my right eye from its socket. It’s the blind one, anyway. I don’t need it.
Kate says: culture.
[Caroline Bingley, addressing the giving of the label “accomplished” to a woman] “…A woman must have a thorough knowledge of music, singing, drawing, dancing, all the modern languages, to deserve the word; and besides all this, she must possess a certain something in her air and manner of walking, the tone of her voice, her address and expressions, or the word will be but half deserved.”
“All this she must possess,” added Darcy, “and to all this she must yet add something more substantial, in the improvement of her mind by extensive reading.”
“I am no longer surprised at your knowing only six accomplished women. [Elizabeth said]. I rather wonder now at your knowing any.”
– Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice
Elizabeth Bennett. Josephine March. Anne Shirley. Laura Ingalls. All literary heroines of mine. All women who dared to swim against the culture’s current, in one way or another.
Interesting, isn’t it, for one who has been fairly determined to remain the flower on the wall, to be attracted to characters who were not afraid to stand out?
There’s an eshet chayil, a woman of valor, somewhere inside me. One who isn’t afraid to be noticed. One who is unbothered by the opinions of others. One who can be bold and brave, but also gentle and tender. She’s always been there, for this is who God created His daughters to be. It’s me who has squashed her. Tried to fit myself inside some mold of acceptability and accomplishment.
There’s something stirring now. Rather, Someone. Calling me out of that mold, that trap. And it feels very much like being broken into tiny pieces. There is real pain in letting go of what is comfortable and known. Real ache in squeezing one’s eyes shut and taking the leap of faith.
But I know, somehow, that God’s hand is there to stop the falling.
Related to the above: I will no longer be sending out a weekly newsletter. One, I suck at it. A newsletter is not something I ever wanted to do, but tried because it’s part of “brand building.” (Ew. Gross. Ugh). Two, life is busy, and about to get busier, and a newsletter is not a priority. Thanks to those who subscribed!
4 thoughts on “Five Minute (Saturday): Culture”
The Austen heroines work for dudes, too. And I’m sorry about the migraines; I don’t get them, but I am told I give them.
I don’t mind standing on the rock
and shouting out my heart.
Some words, yeah, just for shock,
and some to build the art.
I’ll share what cancer’s done to me
because you might face it, too,
and it just seems wrong to be
hoarding what might be true.
There’s something ’bout transparency
that makes my heart get light
like basking in the luxury
of counting stars at night.
But in the end, it’s not my story
’cause it’s God who gets the glory.
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Beautiful, brother. Just beautiful.
“There’s an eshet chayil, a woman of valor, somewhere inside me …She’s always been there, for this is who God created His daughters to be.” Dear Marie, I experience you(r) “eshet chayil” through your words and your perseverance in the face of ongoing health challenges. Thank you for sharing this truth, “There’s an eshet chayil, a woman of valor, somewhere inside me …She’s always been there, for this is who God created His daughters to be.” I will remind myself that this is true of me. This is true of me.
Oh, yes, Esther. This is very true of you. Very, very true.