Sunday, August 25, 2013

The Red Shoes



This past February it happened and I was in complete disbelief that it happened. In one split second my life was altered. No, not a doctor telling me I needed further tests but in fact a sure thing, I had severely crushed several toes on my left foot.

MANY people begging me to tell the whole story and the ones I finally did wished that I had not, a bizarre accident. I will not be any more descriptive to you my readers either!

Fortunately within minutes I was being driven to a local hospital for x-rays as I texted an MD friend of mine for an orthopedic referral.

In all my years I hadn’t ever been to an ER for myself. I believed the injury to be serious enough to need surgery. Before I left for the ER apparently I gave explicit instructions to my sons wife as to how to take care of my elderly cat with her special needs. I have always found it interesting what a person will focus on amidst a crisis. I was just like everyone else. I was triaging the NECESSARY.

Indeed as I already knew 3 of my 5 toes were severely crushed. As a runner no less a person who works on her feet every day this was potentially a life-altering event. Trauma? Indeed!

The following day I consulted with the MD who told me he thought with time, I would heal without surgery. Time.. as we age that timeline stretches much farther than our patience does. The first week I was off my foot 100% with it elevated above my heart. The second week I was allowed to ambulate using crutches but again not allowed to put my foot onto the floor. The third week I was allowed to use the crutches and put pressure on my heel alone. The fourth week I was allowed to walk but only placing my foot flat, no flexing. The fifth week I was allowed to walk that same way without crutches. I was out of work for 5 weeks! If I had to have had surgery it would have been 6-8 or more so this was a true fortune in the recovery timeline.

As I was able I was allowed to rehab using gym equipment that didn’t compromise my foot. It was indeed it took a mental focus to drive a total of an hour to and from the gym to move for 20 minutes maximum.

Clearance? I was given clearance to go back to work when I could wear a particular brand of clog. The MD didn’t want me to be in any other shoe that would flex. This particular one has a thick and supportive foot bed.

I hobbled to the store determined to return to work as soon as possible. The clog style didn’t allow me to slip my foot into the shoe. I was disheartened.

But then, the clerk brought me just one more style. There they were! BRIGHT RED PATENT MARY JANE STYLE CLOGS!!

I could get my still swollen foot in them my loosening the strap. The red were the only color she had in my size. “Sold” I said!

I returned to work after many weeks away. Since then not one day passes that someone doesn’t remark about my shoes. Yes, I have continued to wear them all these months since. EVERY DAY I have worn the red shoes.

“There’s no place like home, right?”
“Do you click your heels?”
“Love the red shoes and your orange jacket!”
“Pop of color, love it!”
“Nice to see something cheerful”

The comments are varied and daily. Now, I feel an obligation to wear the red shoes much like other expectations. I begin my 6th month wearing the red shoes. They came into my life as a necessary tool and now, they have morphed into a topic of conversation. Maybe someday I’ll wear my western boots!

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