buying furniture.

by Amy

Wow. It’s been quite a winter for me here. I am finally starting to reach the proper edge of sanity here with the weather creeping up into the 40s on multiple days per week.

That other edge of sanity was… well, the wrong edge to be on.

Yesterday, I took a day off from work just to give myself some time to breathe. Last week I covered for a coworker all week, and this week had been One of Those Weeks, so I decided to take a day for no reason.

I ate a bagel for breakfast and took some donations to the Salvation Army. Then? I shopped. I used to love shopping when I was younger and had no business shopping. That’s how I developed credit card debt. But shopping yesterday was a different kind of experience. Every store I entered, it was like I had a laser focus to ignore what I didn’t want. I felt no pressure to purchase anything at all. And when I did want something (like a vintage-looking Coke magnet and a candle) I didn’t beat myself up over it. I took a moment to gather my thoughts, pictured the items in my home, and moved forward.

The last stop of my day was a fairly new furniture store in the town where I grew up. The location of the store was a guns-n-ammo store and a swap shop for much of my young life. Recently, it was a Curves fitness center. Now, it’s an adorable second-hand furniture store with clean and cool items.

I dipped a toe in the water and bought a magazine rack. It was low and sturdy, mission style, and just the right color. Today I went back and bought a bookshelf and a full-length mirror.

The feeling of relief I have from buying furniture is immense. I have lived for so many years without bookshelves, without dressers and full-length mirrors. I spent much of my 20s feeling unsettled and on edge. Now, I realize what my problem was. I couldn’t root. I had no place to call my own. I was living in the homes of others, trying my best not to be an imposition. My own style had no place to thrive.

I have always loved putting rooms together. I often lament that I didn’t become someone who does this for a living, someone who designs spaces for living and working and decorates them. I often think of places in terms of what should be moved where (and which walls should come down if at all possible).

So, this is an old part of myself long forgotten. I had to give up much of my furniture in 2001, and much of my decor lived in storage until last July. I feel like I am slowly getting my “eye” back, slowly remembering what looks good where and how I like my space to feel.

I’m making myself right at home.