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Letting Go of My Inner Carrie

While living in D.C., I rarely found time to watch Sex and the City. After all, I was living the city life as a single woman with my friends. We would work all day, party all night, and pamper ourselves with retail therapy. Once I moved back to the Midwest, I couldn’t live without the series. The reruns served as my connection to “civilization” and my life in the city.

As I entered into the movie theater this weekend to watch the much anticipated movie, I was shocked to see so many Midwestern women excited to watch it. There are times that I feel isolated living in Jackson, Michigan. After all, I can’t pick up a pair of Manolos, Spanx, Agent Provocateur, Kate Spade, La Perla, or even my Fresh shampoo and conditioner. How is it possible that the women in the theater could relate to the characters or even the lifestyle?

Being the extrovert that I am, I asked around. (This is an acceptable behavior in Michigan but if I was in D.C., people would have given me dirty looks with such an inquiry.) For most of the women I spoke with, they shared that they have lived vicariously through the lives of Carrie, Miranda, Samantha, and Charlotte ... a life that they will never experience. They don’t have Manolos and Jimmy Choos in their closet, they shop at WalMart, and wear tennis shoes when they aren’t working out. Wow! Can you imagine? Yes, I can. If I hadn’t spent several years in D.C. and jetsetting to major cities around the world, I would be just like them.

As I was driving home, I was questioning whether or not my life is better off because I own pairs of $500 shoes and $300 handbags, had $150 haircuts, dropped a thousand dollars at the spa, and didn’t blink when handing over a quarter of my paycheck at Barneys or Intermix for a great new outfit. Yeah, I lived the life of a single woman in the city and it was fun but did it enhance my life?

Although Sex and the City created the illusion that great happiness and balance exists through a materialistic and glamorous lifestyle, they can learn a few lessons from Midwestern women. The women here don’t need expensive shoes to be happy, they have happiness within their families. They don’t want a bunch of extra stuff as it throws off their balance. The girls in Sex and the City were searching for something that the women in my backyard already know. The most important “things” in life come from within.

As Carrie said at the end of the movie, maybe it isn’t all about the labels. These are wise words from a woman who has truly lived city life to the fullest. Although returning back to the Midwest after years living in D.C. was a HUGE culture shock, it has been one of the best things for me. I have more happiness and balance in my life then ever before!

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