– true to one’s own personality, spirit or character.
I am a self-confessed handbag and shoe addict. I am more than aware of my problem and I have come to terms with it, in fact I have spent the last two years proactively working on the problem and trying to tone down my addiction (I’m doing pretty well at it too). The thing that makes this an actual problem used to be a quantity thing, I’d just buy so much stuff that I did not need. I started working in a really stressful job where my hours were mental and I would often need big splurges to give me a sense of euphoria, control and a little buzz.
Enter stage right… Prada, Louis Vuitton and old faithful Chanel. Three names that you could never go wrong with.
My rationale behind spending thousands of dollars and often more than a month’s pay on purses and shoes was – “Hey, I’ve worked my ass off, I’m going to buy me some arm candy”. I had no personal life so it was liberating to know that I could do it on my own and not need a man to buy me anything. 21st century liberties right! It all worked in my head… at the time.
What has never worked for me are fakes, rip offs, counterfeit goods and basically copies of luxury arm candy. Pieces of constructed ‘leather’ and other materials sewn together to try and mimic something else and about 10% of the price – seriously – what the hell? Obviously all of this is made possible by the consumers who willingly buy these goods at a fraction of the cost.
Now I love designer goods because to me they represent something more than just being a status symbol. I feel that if you are carrying something like that you’ve worked for it, you’ve earned it or you just really like nice things. I don’t judge anyone based on what bag they are carrying or if their shoes had red soles and I can’t imagine that other people would. So why do people feel the need to carry fakes? What is the underlying reason behind them carrying knock off goods?
Are they trying to be something they are not? Are they purporting an image that is not them? And if that’s the case what does it say about the person inside them and how they feel about themselves?
The journey that has been my life has focused a lot on the notion of acceptance and authenticity in the last 18 months. When I returned from travelling, or rather whilst I was travelling year ago, I grappled with the concept that I was a fraud. I had unintentionally created this image that I was a princess, I was a girly girl and all about the shoes, make up and bags. Well I wasn’t… I love my shoes and bags but that was pretty much where my effort started and ended. What I did love was fashion… I had so much stuff and an unnecessary attachment so I spent the last 18 months ridding myself of all that. And in the process I feel that I have shed so many layers, not walls or boundaries, but layers of complexity on my personality that used to shield the person I was from the outside world. So now the person I present is inherently me… the good, the bad, the ugly, the pretty and most of all the crazy, fun and honest. I am my authentic self. I don’t believe in perfection and never have and totally embrace the fact that I am one perfectly flawed individual…
So the lesson here is… be yourself… don’t pretend to be someone you’re not, because you know what – you may put a bunch of labels on yourself and people will believe it for a little while, but eventually true colours come out. You can study and read as much as you want – but until you start living the life and experiencing it, you’re really nothing but a student!
And p.s for all those who aren’t ok with who you are and living your life… in the wise words of another Tiger woman – Ms Marilyn Monroe:
“Take me as I am or watch me as I leave”
I know I bring enough to this table so I’m never scared to be eating alone….