Two types of buying.

I’m almost done with my living room now, barring some decor things. It cost a lot in terms of money and stress, but it was completely worth it. The overwhelming, misery-inducing clutter is gone now. My upgraded living room is bright and airy. Its main features include a new and awesome window-box, diwans with sheets of the royalest blue and cushions in happy colours. It also features a birdcage lamp and a fake creeper on a curtain rod.
I love that creeper.

Also, I went shopping today, and bought a few things. I stopped at a few because even a little can cost quite a bit and because I’ve spent a lot on my renovation this month. And I’ll continue to pay for it over the next few months. Interiors are expensive as hell but I don’t mind paying for these things. Because even the tiniest home deserves to be beautiful.  A home is a sacred thing and I know how a pleasant space can make your whole life feel better. Happier and safer and more surmountable. Last year, when I redid my bedroom, I stopped talking in my sleep almost completely. I used to do it every night. I still do, now. But only sometimes.

I can do this now without worrying about it too much because I earn more than I used to a few months ago. Which is awesome and also kind of creepy.

You see, I don’t have a mental calculator. I don’t automatically keep track of what I spend and what I have. That part of my brain is broken.

I’m terrified of turning into the kind of person who buys things without a second thought just because the money exists and just because I’m not keeping track. I’m wary of becoming careless. I don’t want to give in to immediate gratification all the time. I was never that type of person and I hope I’ll never be.

And so, I’ve drawn a squiggly sort of line in my mind dividing all my current and potential expenses into two types.

  1. The first kind is a necessity, or buys life-upgrades or peace of mind. Necessities are necessary, a life-upgrade is a big decision and not one to be splurged on without proper thought, and things that buy me peace of mind can be both big and small.
  2. The second kind includes material expenses with more short-term effects on life and mood, or expenses that are mostly just bells-and-whistles. Things I really want but don’t exactly need,  for instance, or things I could definitely do without.

My renovation is a necessary life-upgrade. Everyone deserves a lovely house. My nephews deserve that window-box. My mom deserves a kickass kitchen. Going home by rick everyday seems extravagant, but it means a lot less commute related anxiety and so I’ll spend on that.

But if I don’t need a third new item of clothing today, I should probably stop right there and buy more some other time. And the 7 books I added to cart on Flipkart last week, just because I got my new bookcase? I’ll empty that cart. I’ll turn it into a Wishlist. Those are all books I’ve already read. Many are books I’ve owned before, and lent out or lost. And while I really want them all again, I think I’ll wait. I’ll get myself one book a month and no more.

It’ll feel more precious that way.


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