True confession: I love shopping! Not for the act of accumulating things but for the real-life lessons it offers. I can walk the perfumed aisles of Nordstrom and appreciate the glowing allure of the make-up counter and still be 100% ok with picking up nail polish from the 99 Cent Store. How can I live with such a chasm of quality, you ask? I took a queue from my grandma.
I have fond memories of my grandma taking me shopping to The Grove and the Beverly Center in downtown Los Angeles. We would make a whole day of it and have a little “nosh” (small meal) and “take-in” a CBS show, which was filmed close by. My grandma was a show in and of herself. Adorned with hot pink lipstick, platinum blonde hair, and an animal print of some kind, she relished the good life, with this caveat: live fully AND fully within your budget. There was no sense of deprivation, only self-control. This left an impression on my mind that has steered my purchasing decisions as certain as a steering wheel controls the direction of a car.
However, this generational wisdom nearly came crashing down when I faced a financial predicament of sorts. Let me first explain that something happens to the psyche of a woman who has thin hair. It’s a problem that attacks the very core of your femininity and confidence. Under that mental duress, it would seem a necessity to spend thousands of dollars, if required, to fix the problem.
My sister and I took a drive to Beverly Hills and decided to check out the Follea located there. If you aren’t familiar with Follea, it is a high-end wig shop that produces beautiful wigs and hair pieces. We entered the shop and as we ascended the stairs we tossed around a couple of amateur strategies to possibly negotiate a discount on one of the pieces.
As I ran my hair through the butter-soft hair topper, I winced when I flipped over the price tag. I had a déjà vu moment when I saw that four-digit number because I had seen it a couple weeks earlier at my daughter’s orthodontic consult. My sister gently coaxed me out of the salon and assured me that I could find something else and reminded me that I had to plan for the expense of braces.
Now, this isn’t a “burnt toast” example of motherhood. The sting of deprivation was only for a second. Self-control kicked in and helped me to figure out how to get my daughter’s teeth straight while sourcing great quality hair so my sun-burned scalp could get the coverage it deserved.
While I did not make a purchase at Follea that day, I thank them for inspiring me–just as grandma did–to live fully AND fully within my budget.