Speaking of that last post, your response, dear readers, was incredible. Your support chokes me up, as well as the fact that you're still sticking around. Wow. I wish I could hug you all and take you all out for coffee. Alas.
But now, onto this post! Recently, I re-watched Pride and Prejudice (Colin Firth, baby. There is no other.) for the twenty-something-th time. I love watching that movie so much, especially as I get older, because there are always parts I can relate to a little more and new insights that come upon me.
Following this re-watching, I got to thinking about Lizzie girls of the 21st century as well as Lydia girls of the 21st century. And wondering which category I fall under.
I think most of us know that girl (or girls) who is so desperate for love that she'll settle for the first guy who blinks at her. She doesn't take into account the man's morals, behavior, or interests. She'll say that she doesn't want to hold him to unrealistic expectations, that there's no such thing as a perfect man, that he's human and that's fine. But then in the next breath, she'll be making excuses and saying that he'll change. She becomes so lost in him because he gives her attention and makes her feel pretty and loved (for his own purposes, no doubt), that she gives little thought to anything else.
She shoves down her emotions if she has an skepticism of her significant other or anything else in life. This she does all for the sake of being happy. She doesn't know how to feel other emotions because she is so set on happiness. But at the end of the day...is she really happy?
It's been said that if you throw a frog into boiling hot water it'll jump right out. However, if the frog is to be placed in cold water that is slowly heated to a boiling temperature, it'll stay right there and be fried. This can be applied to so many things in life, especially relationships. But this girl, she is like the frog. She can spot a bad relationship of her friends a mile away, and maybe deep down, she knows her relationship isn't healthy, either. Either way, the pot is comfortable and sure, the water's getting kind of hot, but she's so used to it, so she'll stay there until it's too late. All for the sake of attention.
She, my friends, is the twenty-first century Lydia. I've seen this happen so many times to so many amazing women who sell themselves short of what they deserve. She has told herself the lie that she can't attain anyone better, that perhaps there is no one better, so she stays in that boiling pot.
On the other hand, the twenty-first century Lizzie is much more skeptical when it comes to men. She is persuaded that nothing but the deepest love will induce her to matrimony (that's basically a direct quote, folks). She is patient in waiting for whatever life holds for her, be it man or no. She knows who she is and thus does not care about the opinions of others (ahem, Lady Catherine). That being said, sometimes she takes things to heart too much, due to the amount of caring that she possesses, and she does get hurt. She is passionate and is not afraid of confrontation.
I strive to be a Lizzie. While watching the movie, I thought smugly, Of course I'm a Lizzie. How could I possibly be a Lydia? But as the movie progressed, some unpleasant memories came to mind. Memories containing some Wickham-like boys in my own life.
All of a sudden, my thoughts switched to how could I possibly be a Lizzie?!
Wonderings such as this plagued me for days as I searched for some relief to my conscience. Finally, I realized how unfair it was to put the entire female gender into two boxes and label them LIZZIE and LYDIA and expect them all to stay put. Women hate staying put when you tell them to. I should know. I came to see that perhaps in every women, there is both Lydia and Lizzie. Perhaps one shines more clearly than the other, but aspects of both are there.
This was all well and good, but I was still convinced that I had previously been a Lydia and that really hurt. Until. I had the starting realization that....
LIZZIE LIKED WICKHAM!
Lizzie, who by no means is perfect, was enthralled by Wickham and perhaps even thought herself to be in love with him. Blindly, she let Wickham lead her onto the path of hate for a man who was indeed good. Mr. Darcy!
And here, readers, is where the biggest distinction of all is between Lizzie and Lydia. Lizzie may have liked Wickham, but she didn't pursue him and did let him go. Indeed, regarding Wickham, Lizzie said something along the lines of (I can't find the exact quote), "yes, go, go, I shall not wish you back."
AH YES! SO POWERFUL! And why is that? Because she's realized what a loser he is! But she calls that he's a loser even though he's made her feel and she lets him go! She doesn't try to fix him and she doesn't try to make excuses. She seems him as he is and doesn't try to hold him to unrealistic standards. She doesn't live in regret, but again, lets him go.
Imagine if she hadn't. If she had continued the relationship and Wickham had married her. She would have completely missed Darcy.
How sad it is, all the girls today, clinging to their Wickhams out of the fear of the unknown and of being alone. How sad that they are missing their Darcys.
I don't pretend to be perfect and I know that I don't have all of the answers. But I do know that there is such a thing as second chances and that people can change. I know that God is in control and He wants our happiness more than anything.
But the thing is, we'll never find it in anyone. Not Darcy and not Wickham.
God created our hearts, He gave us the ability to love...so why shouldn't he be the first one we love? How could I ever learn to love a flawed human being if I cannot first love my perfect God? Why should we look to Cosmo or Seventeen for relationship advice? Rather, let's go to the maker of love (He who is Love) and let Him lead us and direct our longings and desires. He's healed me from past hurts that have seemed unhealable...He is so faithful.
Jesus, teach me how to love.
And can I just say-- bravo, Jane Austen, for creating amazing characters that cause such ponderings!? Author goals, man, author goals.