I just moved house. I moved from a one bedroom, dark, depressing apartment in a loud neighborhood to a charming two bedroom cottage that is light and airy on a quiet cul-de-sac. The old place never felt like home even though I lived there over two years.
The neighbors were constantly fighting, and I had to call the police on two separate occasions to report suspected child abuse. The last night I slept there, the police came to deal with a violently drunk man, and the firemen came to put out a kitchen fire. Needless to say, I don’t miss anything about the place.
In preparing for the move, I carefully measured the rooms of the new house to plan on how to best arrange the furniture. I spent hours imagining how I was going to hang my pictures on the walls. I fantasized about the peaceful nights and having friends come over for coffee and games and what-not.
In my preparations as well, I went shopping. Everyone knows that when you move you wipe out the kitchen cabinets and put down clean paper. So I bought shelf paper.
The carpet in the house is worn, and I wished to cover the worst parts. Rugs! In the entry. In the hall. In the living room. In my bedroom. I had to have rugs. Did I settle for the ones I found at the bargain store. Of course not. I went to all the furniture stores in town and found one at half price that was still double the discount store price.
Walking through an antique store, I found a really cool modern sculpture made of leucite. I immediately thought it would look lovely in my entry sitting below a painting my sister did for me years ago. It was only $75. Out came the credit card and up went my debt.
What haven’t I bought? New clothes for me. Oh, that’s not completely true. I bought a new hat, and I have my eye on a nice shirt that’s for sale on eBay.
I have a problem spending. I spend splendidly.
Shopping sprees are a symptom of bipolar disorder, and I remember vividly going to the store once for a new decorative cushion for the couch and coming home with over a dozen. I had gone with the intention of buying one, and I came home with bags and bags of pretty pillows.
I wish I could write that I have coping mechanisms for this behavior, but I honestly don’t. I buy things, and then I return them. I talk about it with my therapist. I sit on my hands when I look at items on eBay. I avoid the used book stores and instead haunt the library. Basically, I hold on to something solid when I think I need to spend.
I would not make a good rich person. I would simply spend all the money.