I didn’t realize who they were when we first met. They were a beautiful couple. He looked like he could be a personal trainer. She looked like the popular girl everyone wanted to be friends with. Their children were beautiful. And worst of all, they had great personalities. Guess what happened when I met the Joneses?
Mrs. Jones and I first met out in public. Our kids were the same age and they hit it off, so we set up a playdate.
The afternoon of the playdate arrived and I was exhausted from having worked all week and been up all night with the baby. I had fallen asleep and woke 10 minutes before I needed to leave!
I threw on the first outfit I found and grabbed the car key. Picture me in my tattered clothes, glasses, flip-flops, messy bun (not the cute one I wear to work), and mostly-chipped bright blue sparkly nail polish. Yeah, I was looking good.
I arrived (late) in my 14 year old car, which is missing both a side-mirror and a door-handle. There’s also damage all down the side from when someone who didn’t know how to operate their brand new Lexus drove into me. As I pulled into their driveway, there it was: my dream car.
As I entered their house and put my car key in my pocket, it fell out through the hole in my shorts. I don’t have a keychain because even my key is broken and can’t go on a keychain. So I laid my broken key on the counter as I was given a tour.
Their house was beautifully decorated with original pieces, most of which the Joneses hand-made or created with repurposed materials. I was impressed! We had a nice visit and planned to meet again in a few weeks, next time at my house.
As Mrs. Jones walked me out and saw my car, I felt embarrassed. This feeling surprised me! I am usually so proud of my reliable old car.
When I returned home, I looked around my house. The walls were bare and you may be surprised to hear that my 20-year-old hand-me-down sofa was looking like it had seen better days. Again, I felt embarrassed. This time at just the thought of the Joneses seeing my home.
My husband and I are minimalists and OCD (well, one of us is OCD and the other has more of an obsessive compulsive personality, I’ll let you decide who’s who). Our home is kept in near-perfect condition (well, as near-perfect as you can get with 3 kids and a dog). I love my home! Yet at that moment I felt that my home was not good enough.
Over the next few weeks, I spent THOUSANDS of dollars on home improvements, including:
- buying a new couch
- making my version of a living wall
- replacing sod in front yard
- repotting my succulents
- installing a new fancy doorbell camera
These were all things we planned to do/purchase anyway, just not all at once. It completely blew my budget!
The Joneses came over today for the first time. Before they arrived I fixed my hair, painted my nails, put in my contacts, and wore clothes that did not have holes.
We had a lovely visit. But now I realize that it was because I was feeling more confident about myself, not because of my new couch.
Do I regret making the purchases? I regret why I made the purchases. I don’t like that it was my insecurities that led me to spend money I had not planned. Luckily, I was able to pay for them without going into debt. But next time, I hope I will be better at recognizing the Joneses when I meet them.
Have you met your Joneses?
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