Monday, October 11, 2010

In my Shoes

As a young girl, I loved shoes. But, there was one problem. None of the cute shoes would fit with my AFO's. My mom and I would spend hours in Wal-Mart hoping that one pair might work.

I spotted a cute pair that I just had to try on. Mama would bend down with the shoe horn in hand. It was a war. Heragainst the shoe. She pulled and tugged, but it just wouldn't go over my braces. I let out a sigh of disappointment as we moved on.

Sometimes I would suggest a pair to Mama even though I knew they wouldn't work. I thought if I wished hard enough they would magically fit. I knew Wal-Mart shoes didn't have any support in them, but they had all of the cute styles. Usually, we would order dressy shoes from a speciality shoe store, but it was different for everyday shoes. Mama would have to buy them a size up from my normal size so the shoes would go over my AFO's. Tears would sting my eyes as I was reminded once again that I wasn't like everyone else. (These didn't come from Wal-Mart, either.)

Going to school was also constant reminder of what I couldn't have. All of my friends wore these cute strappy sandals. The pain almost felt like it would leap out of my chest each time I heard a flip flop coming down the hall.

Mama didn't mind paying more for my shoes because she knew it was what I needed. But, I was mad, frustrated, and overwhelmed. I just couldn't understand why all of the shoes that worked with AFO's had to be boring. I wanted color and style! Was that too much to ask? Twenty years ago it was. Now, there are companies like NAOT who make sure people in braces have cute shoes (the footbed comes out, and I think some of the shoes come in wide sizes).

Even though I don't have to wear braces anymore, finding shoes is still a struggle because I have to wear a heel lift in my left shoe. The shoe has to be wide enough to accommodate that. Privo has removable insoles, too, so that works for me. (There are many other websites that sell Privo, I just linked to a familiar one. You can find really good sales on them if you look.)

That saying "Don't judge someone before you walk a mile in their shoes" is so true.


tam7777 said...

Those were some rough days. I knew you wanted the cute shoes and it broke my heart that we couldn't get them. I also knew what you needed so I had to stay focused. I went to bed many a nights and cried cause you could not wear regular shoes, but now that I look back, it was the best thing for you. Sometimes you have to do the right thing even when it hurts

BK said...

I love Privos!! Clarks makes them which is probably why they are so comfy!