We’re half way through Lessons in Chemistry and if we’re being honest, we thought ok, this episode is going to be a filler. It’s going to be just meh to get us from point A to point B. But this episode made me understand Elizabeth more and for that, I am appreciative.
Elizabeth is very pragmatic, but most scientists that I have known in my life are. They have a system in place of how they want to do things and think. They are very logical and believe in the reasons behind thing and I can respect that.
But that also being said, I am not one of those people, so I don’t understand it. What I do understand is that for every action there is a reaction and we saw a lot of that in this episode.
Elizabeth is in the hospital, ready to give birth. Just staring at all the women giving birth in the same room, I will be so thankful for my privacy every single time that I am in a hospital.
She’s being cost efficient – making sure that she’s not spending more than she can afford. She is fearful and I don’t think anyone can blame her. Elizabeth is living in a time where having a baby means that she can’t do anything but have that baby. People believe that women who have a baby need to stay home and do nothing but raise the baby.
But that is not Elizabeth. That’s nothing that she’s going to want to do. She’s going to want to accomplish everything that she set out to do before. She’s going to want to reclaim her life. She gives birth and she’s unsure of what to do or even how to figure out a name for her daughter. But she does.
Unfortunately the nurse gives bad advice to a person like Elizabeth, telling her to just name the baby what she feels. Umm… for a person that thinks logically that means the emotion that she’s feeling, so she names the baby MAD. Not Madeline, just MAD.
Of course having a baby on your own is hard and Elizabeth is experiencing that. Mad won’t stop crying, she refuses to eat. Mad can definitely feels Elizabeth’s tension and fear. What I do love is that this leads Elizabeth to going to Harriet. I feel like these two need each other more than they’ve cared to admit.
Elizabeth misses Calvin. He never knew that she was pregnant and that has been something that has affected her. She sees him everywhere and sees what a great Dad that he would be. I can’t for the life of me imagine what that would be like. It feels just painful. It feels like it would hurt and that hurt would knock the life out of me.
When a woman has a baby, and is experiencing everything that she’s going through, she needs community. So knowing that the things that she is going through are normal is a good thing for Elizabeth.
She’s innovative and Harriett is there and is going to help her get through everything. We can appreciate that friendship. TBH, we need community all the time and these two need each other.
So, what I love the most about this episode is that Harriett and Elizabeth are learning to rely on each other. They are pushing each other towards their dreams and making sure that they don’t back down just because they are women.
Elizabeth is having money issues and finds a way to make the money she needs. She’s helping out other chemists from Hastings and finds out that there is now a DNA department. I legitimately stood up and clapped as she went and faced down the chemists that stole her work. Hastings may have gotten the grant that she deserved, but that wasn’t going to stop Elizabeth.
So much so that she pretends to be Fran and gets a whole bunch of lab equipment sent to her house. Normally I am 100% against stealing, but I get why she did it, so like I ain’t mad about it. Sorry, not sorry.
I do feel for Elizabeth when Harriett’s husband returns. I am so happy for Harriett, but I do see the pain in Elizabeth’s face. She, again, is faced with the realization that Calvin isn’t around. But I do hope that it also shows he that she can have an amazing life still and do amazing things. Life is just beginning for her.
Fast forward seven years, we see how the cooking show came to be. We’ve been seeing this little girl throughout the show and we’re set to believe that it may be Mad. But we find out that it’s not – it’s actually the producers daughter. She’s been stealing Mad’s lunch every day.
Elizabeth isn’t one to back down from a fight and so she goes to confront Walter. Walter has been having a bad day and needs to find a new host for a television show. He’s got the idea that Elizabeth would be perfect after he tastes a bit of her pot pie.
While there is a lot going on in this episode, my favorite part is that it doesn’t shy away from the hardships of motherhood and needing community. I think it’s important that shows don’t romanticize everything and that is part of the reason that I love shows like Lessons in Chemistry.
Is everything factual? No. But what it is, is entertaining, thought provoking, and quality.
- Love that Elizabeth’s doctor is keeping an eye on her and wants her to join the rowing team. He knew Calvin and he wants Elizabeth to be healthy. I love that he’s supportive.
- Harriett telling her husband that she wants to take the bar – YASSS!! She’s not gonna settle.
- Love Mad. She’s going to challenge Elizabeth which is great. But you can tell that she’s also changed and grown.