Giving away nostalgia

I did something yesterday that really was a long time coming, but I never seemed to be able to face it before.  I flung open an over-stuffed wardrobe, and pulled out all my shoes.  The ones I had no chance of walking or even standing in anymore.  I’d kept them in this wild hope that one day it would be possible again, but last night I faced up to the harsh reality that it might never happen.

Maybe I expected to be tearful about it, but that was helped by the disturbing sight of my seven year old son walking around in pointy black heels.  And my sweet little girl pushing her perfect wee feet into ridiculous silver wedges.  As it turns out, I felt unusually pragmatic – the whole ‘that was then, but this is now’ philosophy.  And in fact, as I was thinking back, I realised that there were a lot of bad memories attached to those shoes – like the time I griped at my husband when he suggested walking/hobbling until a never-to-be-seen taxi appeared, or standing at a wedding reception dreaming of slippers, or having to ditch them and walk barefoot into the church.  Not a high point – in either sense…

Looking back at old photos recently, it struck me that if you put a smile on for the camera, you paint over the true story.  There is something almost redemptive about that I suppose.  But I won’t paint over the stories around my shoes any longer – they looked nice, and sometimes made me feel nice, but now they’re an unassailable cliff to me, and I’m choosing solid ground.  (With maybe a few sparkly flats thrown in.)

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