How to Keep on Going (David Copperfield, Ch 60)

as I wrote back into a lonely night, the wind going by me like a restless memory, I thought of this, and feared she was not happy. I was not happy; but, thus far, I had faithfully set the seal upon the past, and, thinking of her, pointing upward, thought of her as the pointing to the sky above me, where, get a mystery to come, I might yet love her with the love unknown on earth, and tell her what the strife had been within me when I loved her here.

David! After his painful three years abroad, which he used to try to ease the pain of Dora’s death, finally comes back to England, and (what do you know) has feelings for Agnes. Upon coming back though, David is needed with a lot of inner conflict and general turmoil, which I would love to talk about in extent, but will try to do so in the confines of a post.

First of all, the most obvious issue is the loss of Dora. It’s quite obvious that he feels upset about it, and it isn’t like she broke up with him, but she died, leaving him full of things he wanted to say but didn’t and so forth.

Now David also has a conflict with Agnes. He has, and had quite obvious feelings for Agnes since Dickens put pen to paper, but feels like he is not good enough for her. He feels stupid for marrying Dora when he could have had Agnes, but then starts to miss Dora again. He feels weird around her and he doesn’t know why.

Now he has the conflict of having just returned to England after three years, and the mental space he needs to adjust back to life there, and notice what’s changed and what’s the same about him. He has to deal with being back there without Dora, possibly living in the same house.

Now I feel like the fact that David is able to function with all of these stresses on him is amazing. He has so many things to cry over, so many things to feel bad about, but he keeps on going. It’s a lesson we all can learn. A lesson we all need to learn. How to ignore all the bad things, try our best to focus on the positives. Live positively.

How to Keep on Going



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