Have any of you ever noticed how Edward is categorized as selfish?
Last night, I had a conversation with my husband… It was the exact same conversation Edward had with Caroline before making the decision to become a privateer.
Recently, I’ve had a lot of parallels in my life that correspond with Edward and last night was no different.
Edward didn’t just run off and become a privateer because he was greedy. He may have wanted to be rich, and sure, that makes him a little greedy but it wasn’t just about him. He wanted these things in his life; food that doesn’t make him sick, walls that hold back the wind… He said he wanted a decent life. He spoke of fortune but I don’t think he meant it in that way.
Assuming that Edward and Caroline had a traditional 1700′s marriage, the burden of being the provider for his family fell to him. He loved Caroline. Think about it… The food that made him sick, also made her sick. When the house didn’t provide shelter for him, it also failed to shelter her. How do you think that made him feel? How do you think that effected his pride and ego? When he saw his wife ill because of the piss-poor conditions they were living in; how do you think he dealt with that?
Fortune was a perk, but in reality, he wanted happiness and comfort. He and Caroline were newlyweds. Do you honestly think she didn’t come to him at some point in their marriage and ask/hint to expand their family? That puts a lot of pressure on men who are the sole providers for their families. That is another mouth to feed. So, of course he wanted to run out and give her a decent life.
Even later, he still thought about Caroline… He told Mary Read that he was married and wanted to send for his wife. Why? Obviously to provide for her because even though she left him, he still loved her.
Here is the parallel:
My husband is getting ready to send me away to live my parents for a while until he can build up a little bit of a “fortune.” He’s tired of not being able to pay utility bills and give me things that I need in today’s world; running water, electricity, heat… Things like that.
I never ask him for anything because I don’t want to put pressure on him to buy stuff for me. For example, all my jeans have worn holes through the knees and do you think he doesn’t notice? Not that he can’t afford to buy me new jeans but, I don’t want to ask when I know that money could go toward something else - something more important. How do you think that makes him feel?
So, he’s sending me away for a while and he’ll continue to work on his own until he’s ready to send for me. He wants to move again when we’re all settled so he can be closer to his side of the family. So the ultimate goal is to move, and then move again… He asked me if this was selfish.
That’s when I started thinking about Edward…
And no, I don’t think my husband is selfish. I don’t think it’s selfish for him to want to be near his family - for him to want to take care of his aging parents. I don’t think it’s selfish for him to uproot us and move us to a safe place where he grew up - where he wants his son to grow up. I don’t think it’s selfish for him to want to be able to provide for us and work hard jobs until he’s earned enough to keep his wife and son comfortable. I don’t think he’s selfish for any of these things because he’s not only thinking of himself.
So, I don’t think Edward wanted adventure or wanted to be filthy rich. I think he wanted Caroline. He wanted to be able to provide for her and do so comfortably without worrying where the money was going to come from.
What do you think?