capsule update (or lack thereof)

CAPSULEUPDATE-01 It's no secret around here that I LOVE the capsule wardrobe concept. I've created three capsules for myself over the last year, and it's truly been an eye-opening and transformative process that paved the way for embracing simplicity throughout other areas of my life, not just my closet. I'm a wholehearted believer in "less is more" now, and full support the idea of "quality over quantity." Or, as Cuyana so eloquently puts it, "fewer, better things." I'm a capsule fan for life.

So when I found out I was expecting, my wheels started turning and I became determined to figure out a capsule wardrobe: maternity edition. I mean, how hard could it be? I looked at TONS of blog posts and Pinterest pins, and it seemed pretty straightforward. A few key, versatile pieces that could last from 8 weeks to 38 weeks and boom, you're done.

The reality? A maternity capsule, at least for me, has been H A R D. So hard. But I was determined! I was a hardcore capsule-er! I could DO THIS! The truth is that I've been kind of obsessing over this maternity capsule wardrobe thing, determined to get all my pieces just right and sharing here on the blog. So when I read this line in a devotional last week, it stopped me in my tracks:

"When you love anything for its own sake and not because it helps you do my will, you are a victim of vanity."

GULP. I've had this nagging feeling for a few weeks now that this wardrobe obsession was getting out of control. The amount of time I was spending scouring Pinterest and clothing sites, looking for those final few perfect pieces to round out my wardrobe. The amount of dissatisfaction when I looked in the mirror. The self-loathing when all I could muster as an "outfit" was running shorts + one of Matt's plain white tshirts. I realized in an instant how far from  my original intent I've gotten. I've managed to put the wardrobe itself, which is just STUFF, up on a pedestal as the thing worth pursuing, instead of the true thing I set out to pursue, which was simplicity, margin, gratitude and ultimately, a deeper relationship with God through streamlining my life and getting rid of my attachment to stuff. Reading that line over and over again, I came face to face with my vanity. I've come to love this capsule wardrobe thing for the thing itself--for the clothes, for the blog comments, for the instagram notoriety. And the hard truth is, the last few months of trying to nail down the perfect maternity capsule HASN'T helped me do God's will. In fact, it's distracted me a lot from it. I've realized that I've been turning to clothes - to material things - to try and satisfy my desire to feel valuable. I don't feel like myself in this season of pregnancy, and that's been really, really hard for me. I'm continually trying to find my value in how I look, which has boiled down to what I'm wearing, and so this constant quest for that perfect piece of clothing that will make me magically feel like myself despite all the changes happening in my body has been exhausting, and fruitless. The truth is that I am dearly loved, just as I am, pregnancy body and all, by the very God of the universe. And I want to lean into and unpack THAT truth, instead of buying the consumerism lie that one more product or shirt in my closet will magically make my body image issues disappear. The only person who can give me freedom when it comes to my body and how I view it is God, and not the almighty Forever21.

So I'm taking a break. I have no maternity capsule to share with you. I do have some semblance of a limited wardrobe hanging in my closet, but it's far from perfect and it's not really about that, anyway. I still really love this capsule thing and I think I'll be sharing more about it in the future. I'm not taking a break so that I can go on a shopping spree. In fact, I'll be doing the opposite. I'm just taking a break from being so focused on clothing, and spending so much energy on outward appearances. I'm taking a break from the self-imposed pressure to share my so-called perfect capsule. I'm taking a break to reconnect with the whole reason I started--to cultivate a simpler, more content and less stressful life. I'll still probably share outfits on instagram with the hashtag #valdressesthebump, but I haven't totally decided. Mostly I want to lean into what God has to say to me during this hard - and beautiful - season of pregnancy, and rediscover my self-confidence and self-worth, outside of what I look like or what I'm wearing. I'm expectant and hopeful for all He's revealing to me.

XOXO, Val