I open the front door, and it begins quickly. A Samsung TV. A Fisher Price infant seat. A West Elm rug. It continues—worsens, even—as I walk up the stairs. A Pottery Barn crib. A Kate Spade necklace. An Apple computer monitor.
"How did these things end up in my house, on my credit card statement?" I ask myself.
But how could I forget the burning fire that invades me as I flip through a catalog or walk by a store window? My brain flickers one message like a neon sign: "Must. Have. It. Now."
Lamps from IKEA. A diffuser and candle from who knows where. An art print I found online. Exotic shampoo. Pants of all colors of the rainbow. Shirts to clothe a small village.
I stand here, and I look at all the things I have. They're not things, I realize, they're promises. A more welcoming home. Healthier-looking hair. Entertainment when you want it. Information when you need it. A safe baby. Peace of mind. Beauty. Happiness.
There's an insightful passage by Charlie Hoehn that says it well:
"Here’s an ugly truth: good marketing makes you feel incomplete.
In order to sell a solution, there must be a problem. I have to point out your pain, your flaws, and thrust a magnifying glass in front of your supposed inadequacies ... I get to tell you there’s something wrong in your life, and if you believe me, you buy what I’m selling ... You don’t feel like you’re enough until you have it."
Every single thing I've purchased has filled a hole in my heart—or is the hole in my ego?
Books I need to read. A kettlebell I need to swing. Plants I need to water. Gifts I need to send. Clothes I need to put away.
Standing at the top of the stairs, I look over at my living room littered with toys, and I wonder, "What would my home look like without all these things?" Empty. Minimal. More of an echo. But I could still have peace of mind, beauty, happiness.
Standing in front of the mirror, I look at my reflection and wonder, "What would Marcella be like without all these things?" Less fancy and made-up. Harder to keep entertained. But in general? I could still have peace of mind, beauty, happiness.
Because, sure, I want that new couch I've been eyeing, and I want new summer shoes, and I want to spruce up my backyard with exotic plants.
I want, I want, I want. But I forget that I am. What I want I already am. I already am what I want.
Thanks for reading Day 15 of #100daysofmicrostories. :-) Hope you liked it!