Here is a depressing thought…Anna Karenina! However, this is what I thought when I saw this picture prompt from The Haunted Wordsmith.
Many years ago, I read Leo Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina…perhaps I was too young. I found parts of it interesting, I was fascinated by “Kostya” (Konstantin Lëvin) and read the pages detailing his mind’s journey avidly. I don’t to detract from Leo Tolstoy’s epic accomplishments.
However, reading about Anna depressed me. It didn’t seem like a love story at all, but a tale of how someone descends down the road to despair. I became truly deeply morose to the point I could not face what was happening to her. She seemed so utterly lost.
I think I preferred reading “War And Peace” very much more than Anna Karenina. I did not feel myself sinking so deeply into misery. Although, I read it a couple of years after I read Anna Karenina, so perhaps that was something to do with being a bit older.
There are many classic books I could read over and over again, but I don’t think I will ever be able to face Anna Karenina again, I don’t want to make myself miserable.
Although romantic love can be a very intense feeling and can lead one to the most dramatic decisions and displays…I have always felt that there is a borderline between love that energizes you and inspires you, and the type of love where you have lost all perspective and it is becoming destructive to your happiness.
Anna Karenina brought me to the conclusion not to let myself become that intense. I have never wanted to find myself trapped in a loveless marriage (I am not sure whether I mentioned I turned down two marriage proposals – one expected, one completely unexpected) because my Mumma always used to warn me that there is the potential for great happiness or great unhappiness in marriage.
However I have wanted to learn to love in a balanced, healthy, energising, inspiring, rewarding, satisfying, caring, active, practical and unselfish way. I feel as if the positive examples of my parents and other family and friends have given me an idea of what a happy loyal love can be. I feel as if my years of volunteering have helped nurture in me great capacity for caring, practical, active and unselfish love.
There are three men who have had a significant impact on me. The first was my teenage sweetheart whom I was in love with from the age of 17-24 and I thought I would marry (I will tell you about that one day). The second was my ex-neighbour, Jack. I have a lot more to tell you about Jack. The third is Goldfinch.
I am so sleepy now…I don’t know where I am going anymore with this post!!!! I started with Karenina…very sad, very depressing. And moved onto positive examples of love. I realize I have many many stories to tell you still. But they will have to wait, because I need to sleep! I can see what is going to happen if I carry on here!