So, I’ve been rattling along on a pretty even keel for the past few months. Things are settled: I have a stable apartment (where it doesn’t appear that my rent will be going up any time soon *knocks on wood*), a reasonably stable job (well, for another 18 months or so…then our agreement with a federal agency to administer this program is up for renewal, and who knows what will happen then)…things are just very settled.
I should be fairly happy. And yet, I’m not.
I’ve been thinking long and hard about the way I’m living, and I feel like I’m talking the talk, but not walking the walk. I want to live in a way that has as small of an environmental impact as possible. I want to use as few natural resources as possible. I want to support other people here in the US who are struggling to get by. I want to not be buying imported crap at big box stores simply because it’s cheap and “all I can afford”. I want to stop judging what I have on the basis of others. I want to stop being jealous of the success of others (when it’s well deserved success–the product of hard work, not luck or family connections). I want to enjoy my life without having to constantly worry about the money I’m spending (and I want to be able to enjoy my life without spending lots of money!)
So, to that end, I’m going to start taking baby steps.
Step #1: Stop buying crap clothing because it’s cheap. Buy used/vintage–not trendy overpriced “vintage”. Used vintage. The second hand stores in DC are mostly of the trendy overpriced variety, so I’ll probably be utilizing Etsy a lot for this. I don’t think I’ll be able to cut myself off totally, right this second, from H&M and Old Navy and Target clothing. But I’m damn well going to cut way back, with the goal of eventually getting it out of my life completely. This may sound like a total upper-middle class white hipster goal, but it’s really the goal of something who’s tired of paying for crap. I can still get good deals on used clothing, and a lot of it will probably last a lot longer than the crap I’ve been buying!
I’m also seriously considering becoming a practicing Quaker. The Society of Friends has long fascinated me, and their ideals have always resonated with me. But I have a very poor opinion of any organized religion (they seem to bring out the worst in people), and I’m not totally sold on a lot of the things surrounding Quakers here in DC (the elitist cult around Sidwell, for example). Also, my last boyfriend, who turned out to be an immoral asshole, called himself a Quaker. So, there’s a large part of me that’s reluctant. But another large part of me feels that I should overlook these things to get to the true heart of the faith. I may try going to a meeting before Christmas, just to feel it out.
But yes…I’m trying to become more of what I believe in. Wish me luck. 🙂