Single Lady: Thoughts sparked by http://www.johnmarkreynolds.com/weblog.php, the post on Thursday October 21st. I simply can NOT figure out how to do the Trackback thing on here.
I am working through two main questions right now.
Number one: What am I going to do with my life? A large chunk of it has been freed up by deciding not to get married. However, this also means that more of my life will probably be spent working, since I will not have a second income to fall back on. I have no idea what sort of job I want; ideally, I'd like to mentor other girls in some way, both in education and in life.
Number two: How do I become more of a lady? I have spent most of my life resisting being "ladylike." My preference for jeans is well known, and my distaste for pantyhose is legendary. However, I've realized lately that somewhere along the way, I have started to not only become more ladylike, but also to care about whether or not I am acting like a lady. Some of this has been illustrated by my new love of wearing skirts and trying to restrain my usual temper.
So...how does a single woman who has to make her own way in the world also remember to be a lady? I'm not sure.
I think of the true ladies I've known. There's the lady I am named after, Elizabeth Joy Wilson; and the ladies I've known growing up. There is my dear friend Sharon, who is serving as a missionary in Africa right now. There's also the two ladies in my family, my mother and her mother. (I can't speak for my dad's mom, because I don't really remember her, unfortunately. I like all the stories I've heard about her)
My grandmother is amazing: she graduated from school in California, and I believe work into the workforce with her friend for a few years. She then met my grandfather and moved to Texas to marry him. She lived in the Texas panhandle for years, raising her family and helping run the farm. My grandad died when my mother was 16, and my grandmother took over the farm. She continued to run it for many years, then moved back to California to care for her aging parents. She helps at Awanas at her church, as well as Vacation Bible School, and is active in her Sunday School. Everyone in her church knows who she is. Her house is tasteful and homey, always a pleasure to visit. She is also a good cook. My mom is much like her: involved in church, good with money (something I sadly did not inherit), a tasteful decorator. Our house does not look like a page out of Better Homes and Gardens, but it does look nice, almost everything has a story, and it's ours. I always love getting out the Christmas decorations because they reflect so much of my family's life together. We have made many of them ourselves. My mom and dad have worked to make a house that is not only functional, but homey and tasteful as well.
I want to do many of these things as well; but I'm not sure if I will ever be able to afford a house of my own, particularly out here in Southern California, where I plan to live. But I do want to be able to extend hospitality to others, both older and younger than myself. I want to be able to welcome people to a place that truly is my home, a place that I have cared for, decorated, and worked on myself. I don't like buying culture, I like creating it. I want to create a space of my, that does not conform to anyone else's ideas of a fashionable home; one that will stand the years, and only age in the best ways. After all, age is so often a good thing. No-one wants to drink new wine, but we try to value youth in everything else. I want to be a true lady, like the ladies I've grown up with; I want to grow better with age.