THE BLOG

These Shoes Were Made for Walking

28/11/2013 12:14 GMT | Updated 27/01/2014 10:59 GMT

Shoes are an important part of most women's wardrobe; and I plead guilty to falling prey in the past to purchasing pretty shoes that were neither necessary or practical? In my youth I would wear high heel stiletto shoes to work each day, and go out at night too, not giving my poor feet a second thought. What is it that's so appealing about a high heel? Inexplicably a high heel makes a woman feel well dressed, look elegant and adds that feminine touch. Today we are well aware of the detrimental effects of wearing these striking yet damaging footwear and yet this doesn't dissuade the fairer sex from yearning to buy yet another pair, and suffer the painful consequences. How the shoe industry must love us ladies, who generally own far more shoes than we need, and in a heartbeat will fall in love with a pair that are simply calling out our name. Due to my health, I had to unfortunately stop wearing high heeled shoes long ago; I was very reluctant and sad to give away my shoes, but had to face reality, and accept the fact.

Wearing the right footwear giving your feet proper support and comfort, whether you are healthy and about to run a marathon, or do little walking due to ill health; finding the correct shoes is important. Everyone has one foot slightly larger than the other, but did you know that if you shop for shoes in the afternoon this is when your feet are at their largest? A girlfriend took me to buy short ankle boots that I could easily slip on and off. We started out early and first thing in the morning, it didn't take me long to fall in love with a pair that felt very comfortable and I was sorely tempted to buy them on the spot, but as they were a little more than I had intended to spend, I decided to see if we could find something else. Having no success, a few days later my daughter took me to a shopping mall and we came across exactly the same boot, which I eagerly tried on again. It was the afternoon, and the identical boot that had felt so comfortable when I had tried them on in the morning hours, were now not a good fit at all. I tried several different sizes, but it made no difference - the boot was not for my shape foot. A lesson well learned!

It may seem plainly obvious, but always ensure you take with socks you intend wearing with a shoe or boot you are about to purchase, as this can make a difference too. The most important rule of all, is if a shoe doesn't feel comfortable as you try it on, don't be bullied by an over zealous shop assistant trying to make a sale, for if any footwear isn't comfortable from the very beginning, no amount of stretching or wearing in will make it so.

Having Parkinson's, or any illness that affects walking, footwear requirement's are more demanding. Non slip good rubber soles that safely grip, virtually no heal, and of course the ease at which you can get them on and off. Support for arches, and a fit that holds your foot securely in place. Velcro is the easiest solution, rather than fiddly buckles or laces. All these necessities admittedly make for rather staid footwear, so I have resigned myself to be content with just window shopping at those sexy high heels that I can no longer wear.

Nothing keeps me down for long, I refuse to let anything defeat me. My greatest defence is a sense of humour and keeping young at heart. I find many people as they get older, forget how to let their hair down and have fun. Despite my failing health, I'm still playful, love to laugh and can be as silly as a goose at times.

I had to laugh the other day, for having a "Parkinson's" moment, you require a good sense of humour. Standing in the kitchen, my husband had just arrived home and drew near for a kiss. I don't miss an opportunity, so grabbed him and gave him a bear hug. As we stood in a tight embrace, he casually asked "Is that the Parkinson's, or are you feeling a bit frisky?" Trembling in his arms I looked up into those dark brown eyes I love so much and confessed it was unfortunately just Parkinson's! Laughing he bent down and kissed me tenderly which is enough to make me go weak at the knees - so who needs fabulous high heeled shoes when I can have precious moments like this?

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