So I went to my favorite thrift store today because holiday Mondays mean 50% off everything. It took me 20 minutes to find a parking place, and once inside I couldn't navigate the aisles because of all the people. Now I'm not easily dissuaded when it comes to finding a bargain, nor am I at all squeamish-- all my clothes are used, and a lot of my furniture comes from the curb-- but I just wasn't up to it today.
Not enough carts, loud music, too many people jostling against each other, plus lots of coughs and sneezes. I felt like I might as well go ahead and inject myself with a case of the swine flu just to get it over with.
And for what? To load up on more clothes I may or may not get around to wearing, or another cute thing to paint and figure out where to put? Even after last month's yard sale and big thrift store donation, I still have too much stuff. When I saw the checkout lines snaking around the store, I put back the pants I'd found for Jake.
I left empty handed once I was able to squeeze my way to the door.
I could tell that for a lot of people, being at the store today was NOT about the thrill of the hunt, but instead about the necessity of clothing themselves and their kids. I hope today meant a great chance to find things they needed that will make their lives easier in the months to come. Perhaps what I left behind will be exactly what someone else needed today. Although knowing me, what I left behind was probably something like a 4 foot tall gold birdcage.
My shopping trip became a reminder to count my blessings. A bargain is fun, it's eco-friendly, and it helps my family financially, but it is not a necessity. Why not? Perhaps by virtue of where I was born, or a job, or education, but certainly not because of any great things Tom and I have or haven't done.
And for this I am grateful.
p.s. For those readers who are pray-ers, I'd appreciate prayers for my daughter as she starts a new school tomorrow for 3rd grade! Thanks!