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Ain’t Got No (Money) But I Stay Fly

Shout out to Mannie Fresh and them…

I’ve always been big on fashion. I love getting dressed up and putting outfits together. I love the moment when colors, prints, textures, patterns come together in an explosive scream of self-identity. I love the statements you can make with clothing. And real talk, I love the power of clothing to clearly let people know, “I didn’t come to play with you, h--s. I came to slay.” Shout out to Big Freedia, Beyoncé and them…

Clothes helped me solidify my identity and gave me confidence to compete in spheres I wouldn’t have otherwise felt confident. I knew that if I had the right outfit on, there was nothing anyone could say to me cause, “Really, h--. Look at my shoes.”

And so, I kept defining and refining my identity through my clothing and I spent more and more money to be sure that whatever room I walked into my clothes screamed louder than anyone else’s. I spent over $500/month on clothes and shoes. I bought a new outfit every time I went out. I felt incomplete if I had to repeat a statement piece of clothing. I didn’t know who I was if my outfit wasn’t right. If clothing failed me, if someone dressed better than me, if I couldn’t get a new dress, shoe, purse, pant, whatever, who would I be then?

I had to confront myself and think about where I derived my identity.

I was consumed with making sure my outer clothing was right and putting the full weight of my identity on to my physical outfits, but I neglected the fact that I “was baptized into Christ” so I "have been clothed with Christ" (Galatians 3:27). Was I as worried about that outfit? And the truth is, no, I wasn’t.

So now that I’m on this debt-free journey, and Dave Ramsey yells at me for even thinking about doing anything with money other than paying off my debt and becoming financially free, I have had to shift where I placed my identity. I must now focus on my spiritual clothes more than my physical ones.

Now don’t get me wrong, I still stay fly, but it’s not my main identity source. Christ is.

So I’ve made changes: I haven’t been shopping since December 2017, I have an unlimited clothing rental subscription through Rent the Runway so I can keep wearing new things without feeling the temptation to buy, and I tell myself everyday that I’m clothed in His righteousness.

Who knew that trying to get out of debt would have such an impact on my entire being? Shout out to Jesus, Dave Ramsey and them…

Lourdes Anita

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