The Symbolism of My Pink Shoes

I think one of the most beneficial outcomes of this 7×7 blogging challenge is it serves as a blogging closet clean-out of sorts, an opportunity to finish some of those half-finished posts collecting dust in this blog’s queue. Some of them … well, they bore me now and I send those packing. There are a few others that still light a little fire under me, so I’m saving those in hopes of freshening them up and publishing. This is one such post.

I started writing this on Thursday, July 30, 2013 at precisely 9:19AM right before our family left for Conception Abbey & Seminary College for Joel’s week-long diaconate formation summer courses. No surprise, I didn’t get around to writing much while we were at the Abbey. The original post was intended to capitalize on a once hot-button story, but by the time I circled back to finish it, the story had faded from news cycles. Any attempt I made to tie a pretty bow and be done with it seemed forced and played. That story’s ship had sailed, so I let mine go as well.

But now I think I have a reason to resurrect it.

This coming July I am traveling to Austin, Texas for the Edel Gathering. The schedule for the opening night’s activities involve “Cocktails and Crazy Shoes.” Attendees are invited to wear their craziest shoes and the woman with the most outrageous pair of footwear will be awarded a prize. Now I’m going to call this one ahead of time: Lisa ain’t going to win this contest.

Two plus years ago when I was pregnant with my son Jude, I developed sciatica and was nearly immobilized for much of my third trimester. The pain and problems rolled right into my third pregnancy and beyond. So last summer, around 6-months pregnant with Lydia, Joel gave me a gift card to Kyle’s Bikes and Running Shoes. The experts there use a technology called the Dartfish Gait Analysis system to examine the buyers’ feet and find footwear that best fits the shape of their foot, taking into consideration their walking/running gait. It turns out the perfect shoe for me is the Brooks Glycerin 11 running shoe. Kyle’s Bikes just happened to have a pair in pink. Pink! Not only are they cute as running shoes go, they help tremendously in lessening my back pain. And when I don’t wear them, my back takes notice. So my feet are now mostly decorated in these babies on any given day.

Shoes

Shoes. This post is about shoes?!

Not too long after I started wearing them, a friend casually said, “You’re wearing Wendy Davis shoes!” Remember Wendy Davis, the Texas senator now running for governor who staged an 11-hour pro-abortion filibuster last June defending a late-term abortion bill? If you recall, the pink shoes she wore during that filibuster made quite the noise. One news outlet even called her shoes a symbol of heroism, for standing up for what’s right. I would like to think my shoes represent the same. Wendy Davis and I just significantly disagree on what’s heroic and right.

So if I may, here are a few thoughts on what my pink shoes represent. If you ever see me sporting them, maybe the symbolism will shine.

  • Love — The shoes are part of my daily uniform as I fulfill my vocational duties here at home. I choose this path out of love for God and the family He gifted me.
  • Nurture and comfort — Not only do the shoes provide comfort to my body, but they help me better nurture my family when wearing them.
  • Playfulness — I’m more apt to take the kids to the park, help them ride bikes, go for a leisurely walk, or play catch with the dog when wearing these shoes.
  • Good health (okay, just better health for now) — My back issues have a lot to do with weak core muscles. And these shoes are also the ones I wear (in theory) while exercising.
  • Hope — When I look at the shoes, I think: Everything’s going to be okay. They calm and reassure me. Silly, I know.

I have a closet full of cute shoes that my feet most likely will never don again. Wearing them and then dealing with the pain left behind just isn’t worth it any more. Alongside all those cute shoes is a closet full of gorgeous professional wear I will most likely never wear again, either. The suits and high heels are symbols of a different time and a woman with different goals and desires.

This blogging closet clean-out has served as inspiration to clean out my clothes closet, too. One of my goals this Lent is to collect all that professional wear and donate to Dress For Success, a nonprofit that provides disadvantaged women with professional attire for job interviews. I’ve hung onto those suits for three plus years now. It’s time to close that chapter in my life and allow a new chapter to be opened for some deserving women working hard to find gainful employment.

The shoes left behind? Well, I might not win an outrageous footwear contest, but maybe I have a shot at bringing home gold in a most practical contest? Now that would be an honor!

I’m writing seven posts in seven days this week. To check out other bloggers who are doing the same, see the list here.

2 comments to The Symbolism of My Pink Shoes

  • […] Wednesday: I have a golden ticket to the Edel Gathering in July! Rumor has it that the woman wearing the most outrageous pair of footwear during the Friday evening gathering will earn a prize. I will reveal the shoes I plan to wear during the event. Trust me, there’s more to this story than just a photo of my footwear. **UPDATE: Day 3 post now published. Click to read The Symbolism of My Pink Shoes. […]

  • Lisa, I’m so with you on the comfortable shoes. Yesterday at Behold, I was jealously scouting out all the lovely heels and fancy shoes worn by many ladies. I had on made-for-comfort Blondo short heels, and my feet were so sore at the end of the day.

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