Sisterhood of the Traveling Purse

If you’ve ever heard of or seen the 2005 American drama film, The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, then you probably recognized where I got the idea for the title of this blog. In this cute (but somewhat cheesy) chick-flick, four best friends (teen girls) separate for the summer for the first time. Before going their separate ways, they end up finding and buying a pair of jeans that somehow magically fit them all, despite their drastically different sizes. The movie follows each of their journeys, as they take turns sharing the “special” jeans throughout the summer.

Contrary to what you might be assuming, my story does not consist of a “magical” purse with exciting tales of adventures my friends and I had with it. In fact, it was quite opposite.

You see, I have a love/hate relationship with purses. I despise shopping for handbags. I am the type of girl who has to find a purse that fits my style, size and comfort level, and when I do, I keep it until it falls apart! My latest, long-time treasured bag was a black & white Betsy Johnson embroidered heart purse. Unfortunately, the stitches on the leather handles had become frayed, the (once white) beautiful bow was now a dingy grey and it appeared worn and tired overall. So I shopped around for months, bought a handbag or two, only to find myself disappointed with each one and going back to using my old purse again.

Then one Sunday morning, my beautiful friend, (fellow co-founder/blogger and Manager of Project Womanhood) Nicole walked into the room with the most beautiful, bright orange, Michael Kors, leather handbag that she had received as a gift from her husband. If I was the swearing type, I would swear it was glowing from just its sheer perfection and beauty. It was the perfect handbag! It was fun and vibrant, yet chic and classy all at once. It’s high-quality leather exterior proved durable and internally had all the compartments I would ever want and need in a purse. I was sincerely happy for her, but inside I wanted it badly for myself as well! 
Time went on and eventually, Nicole was blessed again with another gorgeous handbag as a birthday present. Given that her Michael Kors bag was still in good condition, she decided she would bless someone else with it. The time had come; the purse would soon be in the hands of another. Subsequently, in walks our other beautiful friend (and fellow founder/blogger), Rachel, carrying the coveted Michael Kors bag. My heart sank! It was then–at that very moment– I gave up any hopes of owning the bag, as it was unlikely to survive another owner. Rachel carried and rocked that bag just as well as Nicole did, and as much as I loved that purse, I was happy to see her making great use of it. 
As time went on, one day Rachel and I were getting ready to meet up for a play date with the kids when she enthusiastically told me over the phone that she had a surprise for me. We met up and out walked Rachel with the Michael Kors purse and graciously handed it to me! She explained that she was now vegan and didn’t feel comfortable using or purchasing leather goods anymore. Christmas had come early for me and the bag was finally mine! (Cue the sinister laugh!) I could hardly believe I was now the owner of the purse I desired for so long!
I couldn’t wait to get home and break in my new bag! I excitedly and neatly positioned all my belongings into each compartment and I admired its every feature and design. As the days went on and I started using the purse, I slowly became disillusioned. This beautiful bag didn’t suit me at all; it was too small to fit everything I wanted, it was too stiff for comfort, the strap would dig into my neck because of the weight of all I was carrying. For Nicole and Rachel, the bag worked out great; for me, not so much. I attempted to use the bag again and again, trying to make it work, but I was simply discontent with it! I slowly went back to using my old Betsy Johnson bag once again..
I call this Michael Kors bag the “traveling purse,” as it was used, then handed down to me by my sisters. This traveling purse was indeed special, as it now held a deeper meaning for us all; a profound but simple truth. What is beautiful and perfect for one isn’t necessarily right for another. I spent so much time coveting that purse and it never even worked out! Be careful what you wish for… you might just get it, and it may not be what you were truly desiring for yourself. There is something out there just right for you, so stop looking at what everybody else has. This shift in attitude/focus will bring a higher level of satisfaction to your life and make it easier to celebrate the assets and accomplishments of others. So thank you, traveling purse; I am off to find my own!

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