Before my husband and I got married he made it very clear that we are a blue collar family. We work to save money for retirement and build a future for our child(ren). We live in the suburbs where Mercedes and Range Rovers are the norm. We are not that family. We drive Ford and Honda. While I was single, I told myself I was going to have a luxury car, Mercedes to be specific (I never got around to buying that). I spent my money on Louis Vuitton and luxury brand sunglasses. In my mind I thought I would always maintain that lifestyle. That is not the lifestyle I maintained, nor will I go back.
When AJ was first born I spent the first 3 months in a fog, in oversized sweatpants and nose deep in social media while the babe napped (I know, I should have been napping too, but whatever). I found myself following more and more fashion/mom bloggers on Instagram. They’re all so cute in their clothes and shoes; so put together. Beautifully posed with their babies. I was so envious of how they all looked. On almost every photo, I had to know what everyone was wearing because I had to have it. Once I found out where they had purchased their jeans, shirts, dresses and/or shoes, I became a professional online shopper. For months I was buying all of the items I was seeing on the mom’s on social media. How were they so put together and I was still in sweatpants and tee shirts? I needed to transform and look like them, I thought.
Before deciding I wasn’t going to return to work, I knew I was going to need to live off of my savings account for any personal items I wanted. I had already planned on the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale. It’s something I do not miss out on, ever! Nick and I have our own checking and savings accounts and we have a joint account for all house related items. We agreed “The House” would cover anything baby or home related, but if I wanted to go shopping that was going to come from my account(s). I sold facials and mani’s and pedi’s as maintenance. I equate those to car maintenance. If you don’t maintain it, it’s going to go bad and break down on you eventually. Luckily he agreed to include those as household items.
It wasn’t until recently that I realized I’m a stay-at-home-mom. That means I bring home $0. I realized if I continued to stay on this path of shopping, I’d end up with $0 in my savings. After the last few months of out of control spending for someone with no job, or no where to go for that matter, I started to feel really, really guilty about my purchases. It was almost like I would get this sick feeling in my stomach. It was then that I remembered something I had heard in church. “Do not let your adorning be external-the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear – but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is God’s sight is very precious.” We’ve been away on weekends lately, missing our Sunday’s at church, so I don’t know if this is God’s way of reeling me back in, but I’m pretty sure it is. I have to remember that as much as I love clothes and shoes and shopping, those are not the “things” that are important in my life. I have to remember that it’s the heart that matters. It’s the spirit inside that I should be concerned with. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I’m going to stop shopping forever, I just need to refocus my mind. I need to stop trying to keeping up with the Jones’. We are not the Jones’. We never will be the Jones’. I look around knowing I have too much. Now, I’m not hating on those who get out there and spend, spend, spend. Good for you if you have the means, I’m just not going to try and keep up with you anymore.
I’ve decided to challenge myself for the month of August to not spend money on unnecessary items for myself. I make this declaration because if I don’t say it outloud, I’ll fail. I have already told my husband I promise to not spend on shoes, clothes, accessories or makeup for the month of August. Do you want to join me in the challenge? If so, comment below and let me know how you’re going to make it a whole month without spending. If you feel the need to buy something, remember this:
“Do not let your adorning be external-the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear – but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious.”