In the book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up^, Marie Kondo wrote that upon holding an item and finding that it no longer sparks joy, thank it for its service before bidding it farewell.
So, today, I (grudgingly) said goodbye to something that had served me pretty well.
Out of all the belts I’ve owned, this is my favourite and I inherited it from my mother (who wore it in the 60s). In fact, I loved it so much that I ignored all my other belts. If you’ve a sensible head screwed onto your neck, you’ll know that you should never be emotionally attached to material items.
Unfortunately, that’s not me.
I couldn’t help it—this was one of the most brilliant belts that I’ve ever seen! The multiple holes throughout the strap meant that it was versatile and I could wear it high, mid or low waist, as and when I pleased, and coupled with the fact that it was fully black meant that it would match anything and everything in my wardrobe easily.
Yet that’s where its brilliances ended. Because of its poor material choice (rubber) and the construction of it (glue), it couldn’t last long. The beautiful scallop edge broke off after just a few wears due to the friction whenever it passes through the belt loop multiple times a day, and the layers of strap has already separated from each other. I’ve tried my best to fix it up but I know—it’s all over for it now. The only thing that remains sturdy was the buckle, but what good is it now when everything else has deteriorated?
When I showed it to my mother, she merely smiled and shrugged.
(Honestly, I didn’t like the sight of the shrug.)
If only it weren’t a fast-fashion item and that it was better constructed, it wouldn’t have started breaking apart after less than a month’s worth of wearing. And that’s the problem with cheaply made things—they never last as long as you hoped for, and despite knowing that, we still purchase them; it’s insane—it’s no different than knowingly tossing money into the sea and watching the paper disintegrate at the touch of the salty water.
Perhaps I liked it more than its brilliant creation—perhaps I liked it because it once belonged to my mother, which thrills me to know that I’m wearing something of hers, and I’m angry that it’s poor construction and material choice forbids me from holding on to it longer; I’m just a sentimental old bean like that.
But all my argument is futile; its time is up and I guess it has to go.
So thank you, for the times we spent together, me and you, and my mother with you in the 60s.
I’ll never forget you and the most important lesson you taught me:
Don’t ever buy cheaply constructed things again.