I have several Shiny New Things lately. I have a lovely coffee machine that I’m all obsessed with, new cutlery in the kitchen (which itself is less than a year old). New clothes, loads of new pyjamas (I have more pjs than daytime clothes, what’s that about?). And I have just bought us a new car.
I like new things. Actually, I LOVE them. I am, I suppose, a teeny tiny bit materialistic. I never used to be at all, and there are still some things that I don’t ‘get’. Spending more than £50 on clothes, for eg, terrifies and baffles me, and I don’t do really do jewellery beyond silver studs and wedding band/engagement ring. I understand (ish) why other people buy them, they’re just not my ‘thing’. But I am a fan of New Things in general, and there are few feelings that beat the warm glow of a joyous purchase.
I used to have very few possessions, and beyond a few books I had nothing I felt particularly attached to. Before I had the Chums I lived a very transient lifestyle, I sofa surfed and lived with ‘friends’ or in temporary accommodation, and my belongings reflected that. Then when my babies were small I had no funds or ability to buy stuff, and counting out pennies from the jar to buy nappies because someone else has spent all the money on crap doesn’t really leave you with much lust for shopping, or life.
When I started my new life with the Chums I did so with the clothes on our backs and nothing else. In the next few months I did go back and get some clothes and a couple of bits of furniture, but it was a fresh start and we really did start from scratch.
I suppose that was my first taste of proper Shiny Newness. My parents took me to Ikea and lent me the money to furnish my Shiny New flat, I spent £500 and bought almost everything, beds, sofa, pots and pans, towels, bedding. I can still remember how wonderful I felt, sitting in my flat with my babies and my new things, having autonomy and proper choices for the first time in years. I remember thinking: this is it, this is my life, I waited all these years for it to start and here it is. And every day since then has been better and better, life continues to improve and I count my many blessings every morning. I actually do, along with affirmations, I talk to myself every morning and tell myself I’m wonderful and life is brilliant. If you don’t already do this, you should. You’d be amazed at the difference it makes, particularly if, like me, you are prone to bouts of crashing depression. I haven’t been depressed for seven years, which is how long I’ve been giving myself a good daily talking to.
Anyway, so I suppose, for me, new things have become a symbol of happiness, of freedom, a reminder that my life is good. It occurred to me in conversation the other day that we have bought every single stick of furniture in this house since we’ve lived here. So everything here is less than four years old. Sofa, bookshelves, beds, rugs, curtains. Nothing is second hand or hand me down, and everything is shiny and new. I didn’t do it on purpose, but I did it. I think it’s all part of reinventing myself, always moving forwards, always starting over.
This year is going to be a lot more frugal, I’ve decided I have all the stuff I want or need now. So I’m going to spend a year saving like mad in order to buy a shiny new house. Which is kind of the ultimate in Shiny New purchases.
Wish me luck 😉