Sunday, July 3, 2011

Love Me, Love My Shoes

I have two whole posts for today; let's see if I can get them all written in time before I head off to bed after a long night at work!

No Wordles for me today, thank you very much!

Both of today's posts are responses to prompts from Lightening & the Lightening Bug.

This first one is the Flicker of Inspiration Prompt #6: "These Shoes Were Made for Talking." Here are the instructions:

We all have a pair of shoes that tell a story. It may be a story remembered or a story that never happened, but shoes can speak volumes, after all they've walked many miles. This week we want you to take a picture of your favorite pair of shoes (or a pair of shoes with a story) and tell the story of those shoes. Where have they been? Where will they take you? Let the shoes do the talking!

Love Me, Love My Shoes

In my baby pictures you see me lollygagging in my stroller or on Grandma's lap, one foot straight and bare, and the other dangling at an odd angle, clad in a very solid-looking white leather shoe. I was born with my left foot turned inward, and the doctor (the pediatric podiatrist! Say that three times fast!) had me in corrective growth shoes (or, rather, shoe) before I even learned to walk.

In first grade, these corrective shoes appeared on my feet in the form of what would today be considered adorable Doc Marten-style Mary Jane saddle shoes. However, at the time, Doc Marten-style Mary Jane saddle shoes were considered totally not adorable. I was made fun of relentlessly for those shoes, and if it weren't for the fact that I finally figured out how to win over half the class with my help during Tutor Time, well? Surely I would have been forever dubbed a social leper. Instead, the focus on my shoes shifted to my, grades, and I was dubbed "the brain." Being the brain wasn't so bad. I got picked last for softball, but first for Tutor Time and all other cerebral classroom activities. And kids stopped caring so much about what my shoes looked like.

In the third grade, I graduated from wearing corrective shoes, and the loathed $300 prescription pains-in-my-butt were finally retired. However, over time I had developed a compensatory habit of walking with my right foot turned outward, since my left foot never really made it anywhere past straight-dead-ahead. This only stood to augment my growing awkwardness.

By the time fifth grade rolled around, the awkwardness had all but taken over every aspect of my being. That straight left foot turned out to be just about the only straight thing on me. 80's bangs, braces, training-bra-bumps. Elbows and knees. It seemed like everything on my skinny, gawky body flailed every which way, sticking out at random angles. And that one, now-perfect foot was my only link to normalcy.

Because of this fact, I became a full-blown klutz. In the seventh grade I broke my first ankle. I had been windsurfing all day at Paris Lake (in Fresno County, CA) with my darling friend Melissa. (Remember that Mel? Ahhh, good times. Good times. ;D) At the end of the day, (after perfectly good attempts at windsurfing, without incident, mind you) as the sun sat low over the water, we were called to join her family at the picnic tables for dinner. We ran along the sidewalk in our bare feet, laughing merrily along. Suddenly, mid-jump, I noticed the anthill over which I had jumped was actually larger than I'd anticipated. So, like any totally uncoordinated 13-year-old would do, I attempted to extend my jump while still in midair. Result: Broken ankle.

Fast forward a month. We're back in school after I spent August cooped up in the house with crutches. We live in the San Bernardino Mountains, where there's no such thing as a building without stairs. After class one day I get all impatient, and decide to brave the droves of students teeming the ridiculously long staircase. I hobble down against traffic, forcing my crutches ahead of me to find solid ground at each step. And I trip over someone's foot. Down I went, and at the bottom I could be heard to cry out, "Ouch! My ankle!!" ....Only it wasn't the ankle I had twisted to smithereens at the lake. Nope, it was my other ankle.

Enter 6-week stint in a wheelchair. And did I mention I was 13? Yes, that's right. It was that beautiful time in every girl's life, that wondrous rite of passage ....when she discovers just how bad it sucks to be a woman. Enough said, to be sure.

At this point you can fast forward several years, through high school, rebellious party years, college and two marriages (the second one--in case you're just now tuning into my blog--being my current and permanent one, just for the record) two marriages later. Here I am, having broken both ankles again ....a few times.

No, I don't care to mention exactly how many. Nor do I feel like giving up the deets on what in the living tarnation I was doing to break them.... except to say that it always involved my shoes. Without fail.


High heels, usually. Tall shoes, as it so happens, are the bane of my existence.

They make me look slimmer, but they make me get injured. Oy! It's sixes!! What's a girl to do???

Well, I'll tell you what that girl's mom used to do - She used to throw them away. Every time I'd get hurt again, if she was living in the same state? She'd go straight for my closet and pick them up with a look on her face that said, "Eden you know I never get mad, so when you see me this mad? Get. Out. Of. My. Way." And then she'd march straight out to the trash (without even considering donating them to charity! the nerve!) and that was that. Once I tried to retrieve them from the stinky clutches of the garbage can. Once.

Anyway, the point I am trying to make here is this:

Every time I broke, twisted or sprained something on one of my poor, mangled feet, it was because I was wearing yet another pair of sexy, sweet, and super-stylin' slip-ons.

And the problem with slip-ons, when you're me, is that they also slip off.  Just when you don't want them to. Like, on the stairs (yes, again with the stairs,) or in well-camouflaged sinkholes on an otherwise innocent-looking lawn. Or just walking along any old place, just for the fun of it.

Once I tripped on a sprinkler in flip-flops and ripped my toe (which BTW had already been broken literally several times) so hard that it dislocated from both sides of the little knuckle-like thingy in the middle. Cast for six weeks (apparently the magic number around here. Sheesh.)

That was the last time. But I still wear them. Albeit more carefully, these days.

In fact, I still have the very pair that led to my demise that last time. It wasn't the shoes' fault, anyway.

It was that stupid sprinkler! Who put that there, anyway?


  1. Love this post!

    I have a permanent scar on my left knee from a fall wearing platform shoes years ago. Stupid shoes would make anyone lose their balance when stepping off a curb or on a pebble!

    I refuse to admit that it was my own klutziness, lol!

  2. Wow! The anguish...from the corrective shoes to bones breaking....and breaking again. Who knew a post about shoes could contain such pain! Hope that is all in your past now!

  3. Some shoes are too painful...even though they are gorgeous! :) I have a slight shoe name is melody and i am addicted to shoes! :)

    fun post today!

  4. Oh, Eden...I'm so sorry you were made fun of...but triumphed by being the "brain".

    P.S. Maybe you SHOULD stay away from the heels ;)

  5. Growing up my dad referred to me as "AP" Accident Prone. After reading your list of injuries, I believe the crown may be rightfully yours!

  6. Hahaha I had no idea mom threw away your shoes! I would have died if she threw mine away! Lol ;D you and were always high heel junkies. Now we're mummies of young ones anyway. All we can do is where them on date night....whenever that is! Haha

  7. *mommies...although sometimes mummy would be a more fitting description. Haha

  8. Sheesh, Eden!! You need to put on the sexy heels and stand just long enough to make your entrance. Then sit down and look gorgeous in your shoes.

    Girl, I've never heard of someone this accident prone. Are you sure alcohol wasn't involved? ;) Incredible that from birth you've had an issue with shoes.

    My favorite line, for it's descriptiveness (plus a bit of nostalgia) was "braces, training-bra-bumps. Elbows and knees. It seemed like everything on my skinny, gawky body flailed every which way, sticking out at random angles. And that one, now-perfect foot was my only link to normalcy."

    P.S. I have broken one of my toes three times. The last time I was pregnant and hit it on the bricks of the fireplace hearth. I was so annoyed because for months, I couldn't fit my swollen toe into my favorite heels.

  9. My baby girl (30 years ago this month!!) was born with club feet. plural. When she was 5 days old she was put in casts to correct them. From casts to corrective shoes with the bar to hold them at night. from the shoes to eventually surgery just before her 1st birthday. She is still fairly pigeon toed. I cried at as Christmas grew near that first year because I wanted her to be able to wear little black patent leather shoes with her pretty red dress. The casts were removed just before Christmas and they allowed me to leave her little legs bare for a few days and she was able to wear the little black shoes just once. Just.Once. but it was great! (oh and I still have the little black shoes. I should write a post about this!)

  10. Loved this, Eden! I can so relate to your awkward and clumsy past...unfortunately.

    "Every time I broke, twisted or sprained something on one of my poor, mangled feet..." It's not often that you get to use the words "every time" when describing breaking bones and injury. This really brought it home for me as to how often this happens to you. My husband is just as accident prone, although I don't think he's ever broken a bone. Miracle of miracles. :)

    Great response to the prompt, friend!

  11. @ Patty ~ Haha I forgot to mention how much I LOVE platform shoes. But we won't go there. ;D

    @ May ~ Yes, quite painful. But also really funny now that it doesn't hurt anymore!

    @ Melody-Mae ~ Thank you! And me too. But admitting we our powerless against our addiction is the first step, right? :)

    @ Jen ~ LOL too bad the brain thing didn't last long! Yeah, I know, but for some reason the HEELS won't stay away from ME. Crazy, huh? ;D

    @ Jackie ~ Thank you my dear, I gracefully accept your crown. Well, maybe not so gracefully. Humbly. Ha!

    @ Aspen ~ Yes, oh yes, Mom did and I have a feeling she'd do it again if I ever fall again... heaven forbid!!! Mummies, hahahaha, true dat!

    @ Kelli ~ Hah! You killed me girly! Your grand-entrance-in-sexy-heels-followed-by-a-quick-sit-down idea is awesome, even made me believe for a second that I might be able to pull that off! ;)

    And yes, unfortunately it is all true... and sans alcohol! I know, I know.

    Thank you for noticing that line, I really enjoyed coming up with all the most noticeable gangly extensions of my "blossoming" body. Blech, so glad that's all over! I'll take painfully enormous boobs over that, any day. Ahem. Anyway. And your PS? OUCH! Just picturing you doing that sent my toe into sympathy spasms. *screaming inside* ;)

    @ Robyn ~ Oh my gosh your love and sadness for your daughter's plight are palpable! Yes, you MUST write one of your lovely posts about it!

    @ Katie ~ Thank you so much! I had fun with it. Not actually getting the injuries, ;D but writing the post. Great prompt, yo! And tell your hubby to keep getting his calcium, and hopefully he won't end up like me. Sorry to hear you guys can sympathize.

    Also, funny you mentioned my "mangled feet" description because ironically, in truth? My feet are probably one of the only parts of my body with which I've never had a problem. I mean appearance-wise, of course. :) Doug loves my feet. Thank heavens they stayed intact through all that!!!

    And guys, in conclusion here, I'm hearing a common theme in these comments, things about addiction and high heel junkies... Do you think I have a problem or something?! ...Oh. Is it that obvious?

  12. Hahaha.....I definitely do remember that day out at the lake, and the day at school, and when Auburn ran you into the hillside in the wheelchair because she couldn't stop it (of course because living in the mountains there was very little flat ground).

  13. Melissa hahahahahahaaaaa! Oh man I totally forgot about poor Auburn running me into the side of the hill! I think I must have repressed the memory or something! So glad you remember all that though, so I don't get to thinking I just imagined it all! ;D


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