At Home Legs

Posted by on Jul 8, 2008 in Uncategorized | 6 comments

Living in a tropical climate during four of my formative years gave me a lot of insight into the world.  If things are feeling too stressful?  Go to the beach!  If it is warm (and it is always warm, they do not even have meteorologist on the news because the forecast is 75 and sunny, afternoon showers…maybe), go outside!  If you don’t have to wear that piece of clothing for warmth or dignity, then throw it off! But the one enduring lesson was about shoes.

If your toes aren’t cold, then what’s the use?  Go barefoot.

* * * *

I think I was out of college when I brought it up with my family doctor.  It wasn’t like it was a secret, but I was having a really hard time finding shoes to fit and I thought maybe the bump by my little toe on each foot was some sort of bone spur.  Maybe it could be removed.  Maybe I could have pretty feet instead of the triangle ones that I have instead. My heel is small but the width up front is disproportionate and perhaps that width was being increased by something that could be changed. 

He took one look at my feet and asked “Did you not wear shoes very much as a child?”

“Um, no.  I didn’t.”

“Yeah, your feet spread out from walking around without shoes on.  That’s for sure bone, but it’s not a spur. It’s just from not wearing shoes. You’re going to have to buy expensive shoes to make sure that they fit properly and avoid shoving them into shoes that don’t fit right.”

* * * *

Since being at home with the Gidster lo these many months, for the most part, I’ve left the heels in the closet, along with the suits and shirts that require ironing. Most days, I haven’t bothered with footwear. We’re inside, or we might hang out in the yard, enjoying the feeling of those blades of grass on our feet.

In spite of what I know about the shoes and the gravity and the spreading, I’ve still struggled to convince myself to shove my feet into shoes.  I love being barefoot and I haven’t really wanted to change.

* * * *

I’d noticed the pain months ago. I ignored it most days but sometimes I’d pop a motrin to stave off the ache. Last week it kept me awake twice and I knew that I’d have to make a change.  The total lack of arch support from going shoe-less is killing my legs. I’m now joining the millions of post-sixty women who have “house shoes” and refuse to put their feet on any surface other than the soul of a shoe.  As if I wasn’t uncool enough yet.  At least I’ve got my Danskos to keep me comfortable, even if I do look crazy.


  1. Don’t forget to also wear your bathrobe and curlers.

  2. hmm, that’s interesting, I think I’ve heard this about you once before. My already wide feet have spread even more from having 3 babies, but they don’t hurt and my arches are ok. I just can’t wear cute narrow shoes. I may have to have you explain this to my middle child though (who currently CAN wear cute narrow shoes- she did not inherit my feet), we cannot for the life of us keep shoes on this kid! And we don’t live at no beach either– pine needles EVERYWHERE! I’m not sure how she does it! at least it IS cold most of the year here and she has to wear shoes, although I’m not sure snowboots qualify as healthy footwear.

  3. While we’re talking about shoes: One time, I looked in the bottom of your closet and my eyes popped. You know why.

  4. I do? I know why? Hmmm. Nope. Can’t think of a reason.

    In other news, did you know that this was going on?

    Oh, wait. Maybe that’s the same news. ;-D

  5. Yeah for Danskos…..have to wear mine too, but not for the feet widening….for the aching back. They are expensive, but I’ve been wearing mine for 2 years straight and they’re still in great shape. No more cheap cute PayLess shoes for me.

  6. Hey, I know this post is way over now, but I just saw an(other) article about how barefoot is good. so now Im really confused. I did think I’d heard about how kids actually shouldn’t wear shoes, but I’d also heard your story. Is it just some people’s feet? Did you see a foot doctor or just a general doctor? Is it just that cheap shoes are badly designed, especially for people who’ve been barefoot? Cuz I can agree with that, as I have the wide, don’t-fit-in-anything type feet too.

    And can we see a photo of the “house shoes”? I used to wear slippers inside when we lived in a place with really scary carpet 🙂

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