Saturday, February 9, 2008
Loving 'The New'
Today I reached a new and unanticipated milestone in my life. Similar to the Age of Enlightenment, but this I call “The Age of Indulgence”.
I must have reached it because this behavior is so foreign to me. I have always had such an overwhelming appreciation for anything new that it always came out of the box the minute I bought it and was immediately put to use.
For so many years I donned my new boots, coat, or dress in the store and had them wrap up the old one I came in wearing. I haven’t done that for quite some time. But only because somewhere along the way it became perceived badly by clerks. And about the same time society developed a sneering attitude toward ‘those that buy something and immediately put it on their backs.’ So I catered to that nonsense even though it certainly dampened my original excitement about ‘the new’.
But my personal preference never altered. It was only outside pressure that made me disguise my thinking and furtively sneak my new things home where I promptly ripped them out of the wrappings and draped them on my body to luxuriate in for most of the afternoon. So, to me, it never counted as a change in my values, only a change in the perception of others. Though protocol may have changed, I remained wildly happy about new things.
Admittedly Christmas mornings are sometimes a bit hectic with me in my new clothes, protected by an apron, frying breakfast in my new frying pan, painting a picture with my new paints, transferring the contents of the old purse to the new one. Pressing my new scarf and gloves into use, and my slippers, and cozy robe. And then making an extra dish from my new cookbook in my new crockpot, opening and nibbling at my chocolates, and reading a couple chapters in my new book.
And then, before bedtime, finding time to luxuriate in the gleam of new scented candles while immersed in a foam of new bath products. And rising from that bath to slather myself in new body lotions, polish, and dusts before retiring to bed nestled in my new afghan. The day is spent in happy endeavor to fit everything into a hectic schedule of immediate use. But I have to do that, cause I really love new things.
But, something has changed in the realm of my thinking. A transition has happened. Yesterday Hub and I bought a new shop vacuum. A lovely thing. A needful thing. With the old one being as old as it was – probably 15 years or more, I should have been in a frenzy to put the new one into ‘trial’ use, if nothing else.
But somehow the box got kicked aside and left overnight without being opened. There was a reduced buzz of anticipation and excitement in opening the new and putting it into action. It stayed there in that stapled and taped box overnight before it was opened. I didn’t even peek at the shape or color until the next day. I didn’t plug it in, try it out, or listen to it hum.
So I can only conclude that I have at last reached the Age of Indulgence. A place in time where ‘the new’ is too easily come by to be thoroughly appreciated. Too easily secured. A revolution of my very nature that I find as unsettling as letting something precious slip away. It is a change in value and attitude that equally surprises and perplexes me. I never really expected this to happen – not until I had known the luxury of trotting the globe, an exotic cruise in a monster ship, or some other self-indulgent extravagance.
But even without lavish intemperance, a transition has happened that leaves a sense of loss. I feel it in my bones and in the last 24 hours, my actions have proved the happening of it. A loss more difficult to bear than I ever expected. I think when one loses their excitement and interest in the wonders of ‘the new’, regardless of what it may be, that is a deprivation as hardening, and disappointing, as the loss of youth and the loss of innocence.
But still I am not so disenchanted as I might otherwise be. I still appreciate, in my old frenzy of excitement about ‘the new’ – a new day, a new landscape, a new sky, a new snow, the freshness of new rain. And new puppies, friends, and babies.
And, slightly, but not so much, the sleek look and incredible suctioning power of the new vac.