Starting off on the right foot

30 Mar

In all my angsty worries about reentering society and having to socialize, I forgot about the hardest part of the return to school. I mean that literally and figuratively, because I forgot how much my feet ache at the end of a day walking on concrete floors.

In warm weather I go barefoot at home. In cold weather, I wear handknit socks and slippers around the house. I only ever put on shoes if I am going outside. Back at school yesterday, I had to wear shoes all day.

I choose my shoes carefully. Over the years I have learned that it is better to have a few expensive pairs than a lot of cheap ones. My mother grew up poor and loved cheap shoes. She once scoffed at how much my sister and I spent on a single pair of Danskos. In her later years she developed severe hammertoe and had to have the second toe on each foot amputated. I will never know if her abundance of cheap shoes was to blame, but I only well-made shoes with good arch support.

I didn’t notice how tired my feet were until I got home last night and took my shoes off. Thin carpet over concrete makes for very tired feet at the end of the day. We have two more days at school before returning to two and a half weeks of remote learning. That means two and a half more weeks of barefoot teaching that I will appreciate even more than I have.

8 Responses to “Starting off on the right foot”

  1. gbrock March 30, 2021 at 5:51 am #

    I hope your feet get to rest soon! I have that same thought almost every day. How interesting that you have in school and then two weeks of remote!

    • Adrienne March 30, 2021 at 5:55 am #

      It is weird. I think they did it this way to tie our three days of prep to the end of Spring Break. Elementary returns next week. Middle school doesn’t return to in person until the 19th. There is a slow phase in. Teachers’ biggest concern is that between this week and the start of in-person for us, rules will change and we will have to retrain.

  2. Katie Diez March 30, 2021 at 5:54 am #

    This is so true! Those first few days walking on concrete after time off absolutely kills my knees! I hope you get through the next few days that enjoy a rest again!

  3. arjeha March 30, 2021 at 5:56 am #

    Put your feet up and rest. It was always hard going back to school after a summer of shorts, tee shirts and sandals. Putting on a shirt, tie, jacket, and dress shoes always took some getting used to.

  4. jumpofffindwings March 30, 2021 at 7:49 am #

    I have discovered the truth of your declaration: “Over the years I have learned that it is better to have a few expensive pairs than a lot of cheap ones.” I am a huge fan of less-is-more, though I do love to buy expensive shoes more often than I should—even now. My sisters, both more style-conscious than I, used to pick those back-breaking heels come hell or HIGH water and scoff at my “sensible” selections. Oh, what a different tune they’re singing now in their sixties!

  5. jarhartz March 30, 2021 at 7:53 am #

    I know that feeling. The total exhaustion of standing on and walking on concrete. And the shoes, yes! It took about five years of teaching for me to get it. Good shoes are worth every penny. Enjoy the few weeks at home!

  6. hzreflections March 30, 2021 at 8:37 am #

    The transition back to shoes after every summer is a struggle for me. Enjoy feeling your floors and carpeting the next few weeks. I am glad you made it through your first day back.

  7. Lydia Dudenas March 30, 2021 at 8:45 am #

    Oh yes- nothing like institutional grade concrete floors with linoleum over them to make one’s dogs bark! I’ll always pay more for my every day shoes over dress shoes-comfort is key!

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