So seven years ago tonight I was at my wedding dance. I remember a lot about that day, but the thing I'll never forget is how bad my feet hurt at the end of the night. I hobbled out to the car to be whisked away to the Honeymoon Suite and all I could think about was getting as far away from my shoes as possible.
I've gone through a lot of other shoes in those seven years. Most of them still clutter my closet. I have this thing about parting with my shoes. I just can't do it. I still have a pair of tennis shoes I wore in high school. (Give me a little credit; I only wear them when I mow the yard. Which is about once every three years.) But I've still got them.
Chunky shoes, knee-high boots, fuzzy slippers. I wore them through miscarriages and fertility treatments and hopeful positives and long, long months of nothingness that crushed tighter every month. The "normal" shoes sit next to the extra-large flip-flops that were the only thing that fit on my swollen hooves for the last four months of my pregnancy.
It must have taken a few days for my feet to heal after the wedding. I really can't remember. There's certainly been a lot more aches and pains and heartaches and hurt since then. Seven years ago I couldn't have predicted any of it. I'm glad i didn't know the struggles and the pain we've endured. But the love, the support, the laughs, they've been better than I expected, too.
I still have those wedding shoes in a box in my closet. I'm not quite ready to get them out and try them on again; I'm still getting used to *all* of my scars healing. But here, at the seven year mark, we've got the family we always wanted. One day I'll show those shoes to Em: the wedding shoes and the flip-flops. And I'll tell her how much both of them hurt my feet. And how I can't decide which pair I love more.