Now there’s a misnomer, right? Orthopedic shoes bring to mind (rightfully so) those beige lace up, rubber soled jobs that always look like they’re 2 sizes too small. Purple, veiny, pudgy, water logged skin seeping over the edges…ew. We’ve all seen them a million times and lets be frank. They’re awful at best, and creepy at worst. So, what is one to do when one still aspires to being somewhat hip, somewhat fashionable, absolutely not creepy, and needing orthopedic shoes?
First and foremost, forget your budget. Cute, budget orthopedic shoes do not exist. Period. All women love to share how cheap they got their new shoes. “I love your shoes! They’re so darling!” “Thanks! I got them on sale for next to nothing at x!”. I guarantee two things you will never hear in the orthopedic shoe world: darling and on sale.
I did a bunch of online research and hauled my darling good sport daughter Elizabeth down to the shop. Holy cow. Seeing as how 1) heels are out 2) backless are out 3) open sides are out, we were left with, well, pretty much beige lace ups with rubber souls. Thankful for small favors, my feet are neither purple, veiny, nor fat. A good place to start one would think.
The eternally pitiful nylon socklet didn’t help. OMG. Who ever thought those were a good idea? I imagine in the 40s they came in handy, but I haven’t worn a nylon stocking in 15 years. And when I did last wear nylons, trust me, I wasn’t wearing orthopedic shoes.
So I’m in a skimpy, sheer, nylon bootie thing trying on shoes. In about 5 seconds my toes are bleeding out the ends, they’re run up and down all sides. I feel like a punk rock orthopedic shoe model (all you young punkers? Your day will come…) and Liza and I are of course laughing so hard we’re causing a spectacle (we seem to do that a lot..).
The one pair Liza tells me I look like I Dream of Jeannie. Another pair is just NO. Of the following 10 pairs, none of them are beige, none of them make my feet swell or seep…pour…ooze…but they are none the less: orthopedic.
Basically I’m screwed. I find a “cute” pair of mary jane type things and a pair of sandals (everything velcro, btw) for a whopping $279. Considering I spend abut zero on clothing, I swallow this price with the accepted knowledge that no outfit is ever going to look too fabulous if I fall on the floor. I finally, finally, finally have come to terms with the fact that my feet have to come first…shoes are no longer an accessory, they are now my lifeline.
This however, does not even begin to assuage my lust for shoes. Check off another win for MS, and another loss for the stylish CFM* pump.
*Come fuck me