For the first 26 years of my life, I liked to eat my feelings. There is nothing so delicious as an ice cream sandwich made of Ben & Jerry’s Cinnamon Buns Ice Cream and anxiety. Washed down with a diet coke and 900 pretzels; it’s better than Prozac (allegedly).
But then, the Awesome Opossum inadvertently intervened. She introduced me to the worlds of Banana Republic and Kate Spade. Why stuff down cheese dip mixed with salsa and sadness melted together in the microwave? That will only leave you bloated and more depressed. Buying a beautiful handbag in exquisite blue leather will make you smile again and again. Why eat nine bowls of cereal when you can get a jewel-toned dress that really brings out your eyes? Eating your feelings will never give you the same smirky sense of satisfaction as hearing over and over again how fierce your embroidered patent leather clutch with the gorgeous red satin lining is.
You might say that the shopping v. eating debate is a primarily female issue, but I can think of several men who buy video games or new DVD players or even shoes to combat a difficult exam or a rough day at the office. And I know plenty of dudes who turn to chicken wings in times of trouble. There’s nothing wrong with it. A little creature comfort from time to time is like Neosporin for a wound. We all deserve treats. After my sad sack post yesterday, it’s no surprise that these are making their way to my feet as fast as UPS Ground can carry them (i.e. not very fast).
This is why I believe that I should be able to file my Banana Republic credit card with Blue Cross Blue Shield. Covering that balance would cost them a lot less than all the therapy I’d need to develop coping mechanisms for the stress and anxiety that I feel in my everyday life. Paying the cost of my Klonopin and Ativan prescriptions would be way more costly than just allowing me to claim shoes as a mental health panacea. These shallow rewards are like a hug for your eyes. And materialism is not currently listed as a preexisting condition with any of the major healthcare providers.