I have always considered myself to be a non materialistic person. That being said, my room is stuffed with materials; mostly tulle and wool. I always had a bit of pride in my lack of things. That somehow this made me superior to those who spent money and acquired boats... Televisions, laundry machines that work...
I've never had to face the feeling of shame for my obvious lack of financial wealth. Probably because the majority of people I am surrounded with are in the same or just slightly higher tax bracket. I thought that I would never be uncomfortable letting anyone see my living space. Turns out I've never had to think about it.
I recently met a very cool person at work (I work in a toystore). His daughter and my kids got along really well, and he struck up a conversation about the music I was playing. Turns out he's a huge Canadian Indie music lover and we totally hit it off. We shared the names of the bands we loved and he gave me his card. Which I glanced at briefly then shoved in my pocket.
So I remembered a band I REALLY wanted to share with him (Lady Brett Ashley) took out his business card to email him. I read his title, then I read it again. This guy, no doubt, makes a lot of money. I instantly felt bad for noting that. I felt shallow for letting that matter. I also realized that for some reason, there's a small part of me that didn't feel like we could be friends. I had a belief system about class that I never noticed before. I'm not as open minded and zen as I thought (I had such an ego based on not having an ego).
I emailed him none the less, and we have had some great back and forth and lots of cool music has been introduced into my life. Which I am always very thankful for. However, I woke up this morning and cleaned my room and took a look around it. I have one piece of antique furniture, a futon and I sleep on the floor. I do have a guitar and mini drum set, photos and art galore... I wondered what he would think if he saw my room. Would he pity me? Should he?
For a second I wanted nicer things.
Then I thought about having to put them in storage while the kids and I travelled. I thought about how I couldn't sleep in a bed anyways. I thought about how they would tie me down. How I'd rather just put the money into my next trip.
This thought process further solidified my priorities in life. Not that I would mind making more money, but spending it on things to decorate places I don't plan on spending too much time in is simply not a priority for me. My home represents me in that it is messy, colourful, filled with half formed projects and easily packed up for another adventure.
There is nothing to pity in that.