From Blanche du Bois to the Queen of England

My parents are driving to the coast today so this is the first day in months that I have had the house to myself. I did not go swim. I probably should have, but I awoke feeling very weird from a bad dream and my stomach was upset and I just decided not to go.

There is a particularly moving article on Chump Lady today. The woman’s story is terrible, but not all that unique in the world of the chumped. It’s Chump Lady’s response to her query and all the other comments on the blog that have moved me to tears today. Women are more brave and strong than most people will ever acknowledge.

There have been many times in my life where I have identified with the character Blanche du Bois from the movie/play Streetcar Named Desire, by Tennessee Williams. Blanche represents the most fragile and injured part of me. She was not a bad person; she had a series of events that caused her life to go off course. She faced humiliation and bankruptcy and all she wanted on earth was to find a man to love and grow old with. Her brother in law made certain that would never happen, and we are given to assume that Blanche probably spends the rest of her life in a mental institution.

But there are other women from film/history who I also relate to. Long before I moved to England and long before I became an Anglophile, I was a huge fan of the movie Elizabeth staring Cate Blanchette. No, I don’t relate to being a daughter of Henry VIII or being a queen, but near the end when Elizabeth transforms herself into the Virgin Queen, I know what she’s feeling.

I am transforming myself.

She has given up on the idea of a happily ever after. She has given up on love and any hint of a normal life. She cuts off her hair, applies the white lead make up to appear other worldly and statue-like. She dons a bright red wig and wears garish gowns. She is now something to be feared and adored, like a god. She announces that she is now married — to England, and she goes on to rule for another 40 years — the Golden Age of England.

As far fetched as it seems, this is how I feel now. This is why I need to work or have my own business. I need to focus every ounce of my energy on helping my family financially. I cannot fathom ever letting another man convince me that he will make my life better. Four marriages is enough. It’s time for me to steer my life and to become the powerful woman I believe I am inside.

A part of me feels resigned to this fate, and another part feels that it’s been a long time coming. My family needs a leader and I want to step up and fill that roll. I don’t want anything to deter me from it.

So will there be a man to step in and take me out? Make love to me? Buy me dinners? No. There won’t. I can no longer believe anyone other than my immediate family want the best for me. Besides, I have nothing to offer them; my loyalties are elsewhere.

I do not think I would be able to accept their less favorable traits and therefore I do not think I would make a good match. I don’t want to get to know them; I don’t want to hear their stories. I don’t want their family drama. I don’t even want their dick. For the first time in my life, I don’t want them.

I don’t mind if someone thinks I’m a man hater after writing that, but I know that I am not. I am simply used up and have nothing more to give. It’s been taken from me. But it will not kill me. I don’t hate man; I almost feel as though I am becoming a man.

I am leaving Blanche and her vulnerability behind. I am becoming the queen of my own fate. Yes, part of me has died, but what remains is strong and focussed. I am reborn.

 

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