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Everything changes. Yet, nothing does. Here’s a story to explain this paradox beautifully.
One of the top 5 entries for November’s Muse of the Month writing theme, with the cue “The more I know of the world, the more I am convinced that I shall never see a man whom I can really love. I require so much!” from Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility.
England. Year: 1805.
“But I thought you loved me!” She said.
He looked indifferent. “Now, Miss Austen… Jane… I am so sorry, but if a man has to live in society, he must earn its respect. Thus, our courtship can last no longer! “
“And may I know why?” She asked.
He replied:” Your ideas are rather radical for a proper lady. You said you wished to continue writing after marriage, and that cannot be. You also said you still wanted to go to Bath, alone, every winter, even after being wedded. I need a dutiful wife, not an adventuress. I will be the laughing stock if I am seen as a spineless lord and husband. You should be content with managing the house, and having children.”
This was enough. She took a carriage home and went straight to her writing desk. She wouldn’t be held back by anything! Filling her fountain pen with ink, she wrote:” “The more I know of the world, the more I am convinced that I shall never see a man whom I can really love. I require so much!”
India. Year: 2014.
“I’m sorry, but this cannot work.” He said.
“And why is that?” She asked.
“You are too independent. You still want to go clubbing and drinking with your friends after we are married. You said you wouldn’t switch to a regular teaching job to take care of the house. That trekking trip to Himalayas, all alone, is too adventurous! Don’t you think you should focus on settling down and making my house a home? All this was fine when we were dating, but things will have to change after marriage. My parents think you are too modern and controlling. I can’t marry you.”
“Well…I should go.” She paid her half of the bill, and rushed home.
She was disappointed! How stupid of her to think he would be different! She took out her diary and wrote: “The more I know of the world, the more I am convinced that I shall never see a man whom I can really love. I require so much!”
Sartre was right. The more things change, the more they stay the same.
Pic credit: Image of lovers holding hands via Shutterstock.
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