More and more I am convinced that it is the little things that make memories. Just this summer I moved across the world to a place where I knew nobody. Within weeks at school I became friends with Allie, who also taught third grade. We shared a laugh, bounced ideas off of each other, collaborated on several projects, and generally had fun together. Sadly, she was suffering from many allergies here and her health was compromised, so she had to return to the US. We have kept in touch and somehow one day as we texted back and forth we got on to the subject of shoes. It is VERY hot in Malaysia and, as a result, most people wear sandals most of the time, but not me. I have ugly feet and that bothers me, so I prefer to keep my feet in closed toe shoes (of the comfortable variety because really, that matters!). Allie was, from afar, providing comfortable shoe recommendations and before long we moved on to other topics. I still did not move into the sandal wearing camp.
Fast forward a few weeks and she was telling me that a few packages had arrived at her place of things that I had ordered for her husband to transport to me after his next visit “home”. She mentioned that one was a birthday present, but I thought she must have been mistaken. Well, sure enough on Friday I got my packages from her husband, and one was a mysterious box. At home, I opened it first and laughed at what I found- Clarks sandals- the kind Allie always wore, in my favorite color, purple!
Well, I tried them on and wow- so comfy, but I was still not ready to wear them out of the house, because, you know, ugly feet!
I wore them all weekend and guess what? Nobody said anything about my ugly feet (actually, would anyone say such a thing?!) But on the weekend I hardly saw anyone I knew, so that was not really a fair test- school is the real deal.
This morning I was mentally prepared to wear the new sandals. I even had them on my feet. As I pressed the elevator button to go down the 15 levels to the ground I caught the reflection on the doors- oops, not right with the flouncy skirt.
When I ran back to change shoes I knew that tomorrow would surely be the day. I will wear clothes that will allow for the sandals. After all, the sandals make me think of Allie and her confidence that I could show my feet in public. With Allie as my source, I know I will smile all day thinking of her when I glance down, instead of cringing when I look at my ugly feet. It really is the little things that make memories- I can not remember how many years it has been since I have worn sandals in public, but Allie’s gift will be one that moves me past that. I will remember her confidence and her smile and face the day with that!
Tomorrow I am ready for you- even with my ugly feet!