I wanted a new pair of boots.
I looked at everyone else’s boots in Breckenridge, Colorado and dreamed of replacing my worn out, out of style, super comfortable, black suede snow boots with something newer, more fabulous, more hip.
Unlike the boots I saw everyone wearing, the Sorel’s, Ugs, I wanted something unique, eye catching, some fur on top, treads on the bottom to prevent slipping, not to heavy, not to light: Goldilocks boots with WOW factor.
I looked and looked, recruiting my friends, my husband, until finally I threw down the cash and splurged. The boots were perfect, albeit deep brown leather vs. the black I desired, fake fur top, outer stitching, truly unique, and since they were not sold in New England, where I lived, I’d have that star power.
My buyers remorse crept in the moment I purchased them.
BOOM. I was right. They were too heavy and the half size too big was a problem as my heels and toes rubbed as I walked, causing friction and pain. Too loose and too tight. My walk in the Denver Airport to our gate in my new boots caused my face to grimace as I counted down each gate number to #33, wishing I were in my sneakers.
Thoughts of remorse plagued me over the next 24 hours, as if I had made a million dollar mistake, whereas the boots were only $200. What is wrong with me, I kept asking.
My boot quest was purely symbolic — I knew this all along. They were a symbol of all that we buy to fill a need, not a want. The need to have something new, shiny and different. The need to feel differently, satisfy the “hungry ghost”. I tried to resist the urge, but when I employed friends to help, the pressure mounted.
My dreams of owning a new home or buying that new outfit, they are all just an extension of this false desire.
The truth is, if you don’t catch the beast within and cut off its head, you’ll keep trying to fill an emptiness. Buy a new coat, get a face life, it will never stop.
Instead, be thankful for what you’ve got. This and only this will quell that painful desire once and for all.