Friday, July 19, 2013
Jo, Lizzy, and Me
I have not been keeping up with my reading challenge. It has almost been a year and I am still "suppose" to be reading A Tale of Two Cities. Don't get me wrong I have read things but am having a problem just reading what I am "suppose" to read. Yesterday I just finished reading The Lost Summer of Louisa May Alcott by: Kelly O'Connor McNees (link to book here). I would recommend this book to any lover of the book Little Women. It was a wonderful historical fiction novel and started me thinking. I have always been drawn to Jo in Little Women and Elizabeth in Pride and Prejudice. But why? As I read this fictional account about Louisa May Alcott's lost summer I realized the reason... Jo, Elizabeth, and even Louisa May Alcott herself did not fit into the cultural norms for women in their time. They found their calling, who they are and wanted to be, and no one would get in their way. I stand at a point in my life where I feel very much the same. I am a chaplain, an ordained pastor, wife, and mother. I work full time, am the supervisor for my department, and am the "bread winner" for my family. In a world and culture that states it embraces working moms I find that this is not always true. I stand with Jo and Elizabeth seeing that my road is difficult in many ways. I did not know all those years ago when I would read and reread Little Women and Pride and Prejudice that Jo and Elizabeth would be my role models in many ways as are the women who wrote these characters. I wish I could sit down for tea with Louisa May Alcott and Jane Austen and discuss life, the characters they created that mean so much to me, and how to find balance in this very unbalanced world.