Only four days since I began my clothing ban and it is already time to make good on my first promise. So, I’ve chosen the 26 items of clothing that I am donating for the month of May.
For being only the first month and having already admitted that I have so much I don’t wear [or have never worn], this was surprisingly difficult.
For example, the top two items on the pile are the same style half-zip fleece sweaters, just in different colors. And I really like them a lot. They fit great, the look good, they are very comfortable. But I have another one of the exact same sweater in white – which I like the best. When I had the choice [which I always did], I always wore the white one. As a result, these other two sweaters have each been worn maybe once [probably when I first got them]. So I have decided to donate them. Unfortunately, a ton of my wardrobe is duplicates. In fact, the majority of this pile is made up of duplicates. What was I thinking buying all this extra clothing?
This has been another reminder of what a privileged life I live compared to most people. I never thought of it this way before [actually I never really thought about it at all], but I realize now that it is a luxury to be able to go shopping for anything I want at any time, much less to find a shirt that I like and then buy it in five different colors. These are luxuries that the majority of people on this planet do not have. In fact, a lot of people are just happy to have clothes to wear. Shame on me for ever thinking of myself as not being wealthy when here I am with so much clothes that I don’t even wear half of it.
I used to think of my wealth in terms of what I didn’t have, rather than everything I already do have. And what I had was never enough – especially when it came to clothing. While it is partially the result of being surrounded by good old fashioned American consumerism – it is also a result of my own willingness to be convinced that I need more than what I already have. That is partially what this clothing ban is about – realizing that I already have plenty. I don’t need more. And I won’t let clever marketing or special sale prices or even my own insecurities tell me differently. Especially when the cost of feeding my constant desire for “more” is the safety and well-being of people around the world.
Well, I hope these items find new owners who show them more love than I did!