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Thursday, September 6, 2007

would you call yourself accomplished?

often times i wonder if we demand too much of ourselves these days, as women. i don't know about you, but i find myself "wanting it all" and wondering if this is really possible. sometimes i dream of living in an earlier, simpler era... that is until this past weekend. the girls in my family were watching pride & prejudice (the short version). the following conversation really struck a chord this time around:

``Oh! certainly,'' cried his faithful assistant, ``no one can be really esteemed accomplished, who does not greatly surpass what is usually met with. A woman must have a thorough knowledge of music, singing, drawing, dancing, and 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. I rather wonder now at your knowing any.''
i guess i really shouldn't be worried. compared to those ladies, i don't have much to live up too! too be honest, i feel pretty accomplished if i'm dressed before noon and actually cook dinner. so what qualities do you think an accomplished woman might possess today?

13 comments:

Megan said...

I feel like you do pretty accomplished if I get dressed, my kids dressed and dinner made.
The two talents I don't have and think they are so important is sewing and piano playing. I have a friend that does both and I always tell her those are the two greatest talents. She laughs and says you only think that because you don't do them. Maybe that is true, the grass always seems greener on the other side.

Mom2fur said...

When I was younger, my goals in life were to get married, have kids and publish a book. I'm married 26+ years, have four great kids and have published 15 novels (all out of print, btw--and I never made much money on them). Now, sometimes I sit and wonder if I should achieve something else. I'd mostly like to achieve feeling good every day, LOL! I think the 'faithful assistant' was expecting a lot of women. Then again, in that day and age the upper class had a lot of time on its hands. We could all take voice and music lessons, and drawing lessons, and language lessons...if we had maids and nannies, etc. (Never read P&P, so I don't know if they had those things. But judging from the costumes, it seems they weren't poor.)
What I really think is important to achieve is to be a good and decent person and to raise good and decent kids. I'm not 100% sure about myself, but I think my kids are pretty good and decent!

Gramafolly said...

I feel accomplished if I can feel that simple feeling. Feeling peaceful, noticing the colors outside, having fun with relatives and friends, being grateful for what I have..I try and start out each day focusing on those simple things..it makes the day go better, most of the time.

Holly said...

I try to keep my expectations fairly low, so I don't let myself down. :)

I enjoy Austen period, but I don't think I could've lived it. I don't think I would have faired well as a Pioneer woman either.

Dancin Queen said...

Lovely--and well said! I think women are so hard on themselves. I don't know why we beat ourselves up so much. But the fact is that we do. I guess the key is to do like you just did--sit back and take perspective. Thanks for the beautiful thoughts.

bethany said...

I'd be able to get more done and be more "accomplished" if I had a wet-nurse too :)
(love the banter between Darcy and Elizabeth, by the way-have you seen Becoming Jane?-fabulous!)

Lacie said...

Ditto everything that has been said! I do often wish I lived in simpler times, but were they really simpler for those women.

Being accomplished...Hummm...I think doing everything(even daily tasks)with grace and humility is a very accomplished way to live your life. All of the other things are just icing on the cake!

Stie: My Favorite Things said...

You are one of the most accomplished women out there, sister. I'm taking lessons from you.

Love the Darcy and Elizabeth stuff. My fav...

Raesha D said...

I love Holly's comment:) To me, right now, being accomplished means being confident:) Confident that I am being the best wife and mother I can be:)

Raesha D said...

OH and thanks for your awesome comments:) The baby hat was SO easy!!! I got the instructions on line....let me see if I can find them so I can send you the site.

love.boxes said...

Kindness and Grace. :)

On having it all. My dad once said, "You can have it all, but no one can have it all at once." I think that's true.

Mique said...

Thanks for writing about this- I always love what you have to say. Do I feel accomplished? In some ways yes, in some ways no. I think it's a journey. I'm trying to be better and just be happy where I am instead of wishing for more.

Mique said...

Thanks for writing about this- I always love what you have to say. Do I feel accomplished? In some ways yes, in some ways no. I think it's a journey. I'm trying to be better and just be happy where I am instead of wishing for more.