Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Confessions of a Shopaholic

Three years ago, inspired by Sophie Kinsella’s book ‘Confessions of a Shopaholic’, I decided to delve into my own shopaholic tendencies and write an article about it. Take note however, that the boyfriend I was talking about here is now an EX, and my shopping addiction has nothing to do with the break-up (“,).

Last weekend, I was feeling kinda down and worried. The more I dwell on it, the more I felt depressed. So I thought, what the heck, enough of this! I gotta stop worrying and be happy. Life is too short to spend it worrying. So… what could take my mind off my worries and make me happy? Well, watching a movie with my honey… but he’s in a conference! Okay, hanging out with my friends… but it’s Saturday morning, they’re staying in bed until 12 noon!… It’s gotta be something I could do by myself. Work on my research? Nah!… Sure, it would take my mind off my worries, but it would also make me feel exhausted. Plus, it’s no fun at all! Which means…there’s only one thing left! The one thing that effectively relieves me of any form of stress. The one thing I love more than eating watermelon, watching ‘Braveheart’ or pouring my sentiments on a journal. Second on my list of things I love doing. Second to cuddling with the object of my affection… shopping!

Yes, shopping! The thrill of seeing a 70% discount on a blouse I’ve been dying to buy! The surge of excitement upon getting a glimpse of the laptop (on sale!) I’ve been longing for, since… forever!

Shopping is most women’s sickness. It’s sort of an addiction that we can’t seem to shake off. It’s almost like a therapy. (I swear there’s a scientific study that will back me up on this). And I’m definitely not immune. In fact, if shopping is a cancer, I probably have the terminal case. One of my baffled guy friend actually asked me one time why we, women, love to shop. What do we get out of it? I always say… well, aside from the fun, shopping is an art (the art of being patient and finding great bargains), and a good exercise (walking around stores for several hours is!).

I have yet to meet a guy who loves shopping. Guys are absolutely terrible shopping companions. My brother’s the worst. The first and last time I was able to drag the little rascal to the mall, he became so impatient after only a few minutes he left me on my own! I think the only one who’s patient and happy enough to go with me was my boyfriend… and that was only at the start of our dating days. He’d walk around the mall and suggest which dress would look great on me. A month later, gone were the suggestions, but he’d still walk around and wait patiently saying he’s happy just being with me. But a few more months later, he’d just drop me off the mall and say… ‘Okay, honey, I’ll call you when my football game’s finished and I can pick you up.’ In a way, I was happy to see him off. At least, I won’t have to worry about him getting bored anymore.

I wasn’t actually born a shopaholic. The truth is, I used to wonder how some women, like Alicia Silverstone in the movie Clueless, could be so shallow as to feel excited at the sight of a beautiful dress on display at Cache. It’s incomprehensible! But yes, I’m taking it back now! I don’t think it’s shallow anymore…well, for obvious reasons… it’d be like admitting I‘m shallow! Looking back, I think the first time I realized shopping is fun was when I moved to the city and lived in a dorm near the mall. Aahhh… temptation, who can resist it? I’m only human… okay, I‘ll revise that… I’m only a woman! Besides, I finally had a consistent stipend from my scholarship… which means I got my own money to spend! But at that time, my ‘shopping cancer’ wasn’t malignant yet. Obviously, it was because my money wasn’t enough! But when I finally graduated, got a job and started earning more, the cancer spread to my whole body. I don’t feel satisfied leaving the mall without buying anything. I always have to buy something… even if it’s only a small pen!

Anyway, going back to my story… so, off to the mall, I went. Two hours and $40 poorer later, I was back home, exhausted but happy. I got new skirts and a pair of shoes to satisfy my vanity, and decorations to hang in my apartment wall and ease my growing boredom with its present state. I might start worrying again after a few days (probably more so, since in addition to my original problem, I now have financial ones to worry about!)… but what the heck! I relieved myself of the stress I was feeling before and that’s what’s important, right?… Financial problems??? Who doesn't have those? But as my bestfriend always say, God will provide! (as you can probably tell, she’s also a shopaholic!).

And besides, if I start to feel stressed out and get worried again, I could always go shopping! ;-)