Wednesday, January 2, 2008

i don’t do new year’s resolutions

I got food poisoning last week and I’ve been keeping a low profile since Wednesday. It hit me really, really hard and it took a while for me to start eating some solids. So when I woke up Sunday morning and realized that my stomach didn’t hurt as much as it had in the last couple of days, I wanted to just get out!

I really didn’t get the chance during the week to run any errands (namely, filling out some prescriptions like the so-very-important BC) so I showered, got dressed, kissed my sleepy boyfriend good bye, and headed over to CVS. When I got to the CVS, the pharmacy tech told me that it would be an hour before the scripts would be ready, so I had some time to kill. I didn’t want to go back home because I really wanted to be out. I didn’t want to get some food because I wasn’t sure just how much my stomach would tolerate it. So I decided to do the only thing that made sense to me—I went to the DSW end of season sale.

The thing is that I knew Jesse wouldn’t approve. He’s been trying to curb my spending all during our relationship. He thinks I shop too much. Perhaps I do. But it makes me happy. Why would you deny me something that makes me happy? No, Jesse doesn’t want me to be unhappy. He wants me to save money. Ugh. Sure, saving money is smart. And it ensures that I’ll be happy later in my life. But I want to be happy now. So I shop.

However, I really don’t need another pair of shoes. But I wanted to check out the sale. I can’t resist a bargain.

Unfortunately for me, I have a big foot and cute shoes in a size 10 during a mega shoe sale are hard to come by. I had nearly given up on DSW and then I checked one last aisle—the boots. I had just bought a new pair of knee high boots while at the DSW in Cali. But I was open to finding another pair of boots.

I turned the corner and saw them. The perfect pair of booties. They were leather with a fold over and ruching in all of the right places. And with the cutest little chunky heel. But they were brown. I pictured myself wearing these boots in black, with some black ribbed tights under a black knit dress with a little Coach scarf tied around my waist. I desperately searched for a black pair among the brown ones.

And there it was. At the very bottom of the pile. A box with a black pair. And they were my size! I couldn’t believe my luck. I tried them on and they fit perfectly. With a spring in my step, I walked over to the cashier to pay for my shoes. I picked up a pair of ribbed tights on the way. One can never have too many tights.

As my receipt started printing up, my cell phone rang. I had been gone for about an hour so that was probably Jesse, checking up on me. Or maybe that was my conscience calling.

I checked my missed call and it was Jesse. I called him back and got his voice mail. I started to feel really guilty. Did I really need another pair of boots? But finding them made me so happy. Right then, I decided to keep my boots and my trip to DSW a secret. What Jesse didn’t know wouldn’t piss him off.

The following night, Jesse and I were lying in bed talking. Jesse wanted us to start saving more. I listened to him go on and on about how smart that is and my guilt grew to an overwhelming size. Part of me knows that I should be saving more money because it is the smart thing to do. And I had already spent so much money for the holidays. Did I need another pair of black boots? No.

So I confessed. I told Jesse about my secret trip to DSW and my secret pair of boots that were still in the trunk of his car. He was pretty good about my little lie. Jesse laughed it off and said, “I can’t believe you kept this from me.”

With the new year already underway, I’ve decided to do something I’ve never done. I’ve made a resolution. In 2008, I will shop less.

Because I truly don’t need any more shoes.


Anonymous said...

Ok, I know I'll sound like a crank but I cant stop myself as this is my particular bugaboo -- are you saving for retirement? If you are then shop away. But if you aren't you should be putting something away each month in an IRA, either Roth or traditional. Or at work if you are lucky enough to have a retirement plan there.

Trust me, it gets harder and harder as you get older to save what you have to for retirement (which people say should be $1 million) if you didnt start in your 20s. In other word you can start saving $100 a month in your 20s and get away with that for the rest of your working life. but if you wait until your 30s or 40s that number will be $400 or $500 a month or more ~erika

cute christmas pictures btw!

lizzie said...

erika--are you and jesse conspring against me? :) jesse and i were just talking about saving for retirement last night. he explained all of these financial terms for me which was really nice and now i'm going to get serious about contributing to my 403b.

so to respond to your comment, no, i'm not saving for retirement (well, i am now but very little) but i will be making it a priority soon with my new job (with new exciting benefits).

Jilian said...

:) Ah I know this story well! Shopping makes me very happy! I love shoes, I love bags, I love jewelry, I love cowboy boots, I love tchotchkes, I love collecting, I love hat/scarf/mitten sets, I love craft supplies, I love EVERYTHING!

I had my big aha moment about 4 years ago where I realized I had a bit of a problem - and was shopping way more than I needed to be. It's been a long process of changing my ways! Really for me - the best way is cold turkey. I can't even window shop - I have to avoid shopping in general!

I'd say I'm probably happier now when looking at my financial situation than I was 4 years ago - even though I really do miss shopping, and sometimes go on a bit of a binge :)

Of course - the shopping habit and amount of 'stuff' I have scares the shit out of my husband. (Especially when he sees how much 'stuff' my mom has!) He didn't know we way back when though - so he has no clue how far I've come! I'm never going to stop loving my stuff :) He just has to love me and my stuff! I am working on 'simplifying' for both of our sanities though!

This time of year is especially hard. I've spent the last two months shopping for Christmas presents - which I LOVE to do - but it also gets me back into the joy/adrenaline rush/habit - and now I'm aware of all the cute stuff I'm missing out on! It's hard going back to my non-shopping lifestyle!

Best of Luck!!

Seriously - when you start your new job - if you start your retirement savings before you even get your first paycheck - you won't even realized what your missing :) Cause you've never seen it.