I recently told my friend about my decision not to buy myself a single thing for a year, besides the necessities (shower gels, shampoos, body lotion and make up stuff) when she told me that then everyone around me should give me stuff. A few months back, I would have been thrilled to receive things from my friends and family, but hearing her say that made me sad and made me review the real reason I decided to go on this journey. Even if I didn’t give it a lot of thought at the time, I guess I had reached that point in my life where it made sense that having less didn’t equal to being poor or in need but the very contrairy. Freeing my closet was like freing my mind and that was a valuable feeling I am started to enjoy.
See, I am no longer the high schooler who would enter high end department stores, pick a few accessories, a hat here, a scarf there then a handbag and would walk around with them, pretending their were mine just to put them back before going away. Or the student who wore hand-me-downs clothes because I was struggling to make ends meet, or the single girl who would buy anything as long as it looked good on me. When I had my first daughter, my shopping habits went from women’s section to kids’ section. Right when I was getting back into shape, I got pregnant with my second child. Since it was another girl, I didn’t have to do as much shopping for her than I did for her big sister, so I slowly started buying stuff for myself again, until last year when not a sale wouldn’t go by without me finding a reason to splurge. Since I wasn’t paying full price, then it made sense for me to just buy and buy. And since I was always giving stuff away to my girlfriends, I would take a look into my closet and tell myself that I really didn’t have that much, that I could still have one more of this, one more of that! How wrong was I, only I didn’t know that.Then I came upon this Yahoo article and I realized that I might have stopped buying stuff for myself, but it turned out that I have been buying more stuff for my girls! Guess I still have a long way to go!
But I am slowly getting there, longing less and less for stuff I would have died for a couple of months ago, even though some days are harder than others. I have been through the phases where I will see something I really like (nice design, nice seam finish and fabric quality), but instead of just smiling and walking away (what I tend to do now), I will find myself wondering what was I thinking, why am I torturing myself like this, since I owe nothing to anyone, why can’t I just break the rule this one time, what harm will it do, etc…? Then I will promise myself to go on a rampage and buy all the stuff I refrained myself from buying, even though I know and hope that I wouldn’t because that will defeat the whole purpose.
With Christmas approaching, I will be buying stuff for my friends and family but I know that after this, I will be approaching every purchase differently. I will steer clear of kids clothing stores, I will avoid the sale sections in department stores like Target and would not be mad at myself if I see something I like but can’t buy and consider the luxury of having to say “no”, not because I can’t but because I don’t want to.