I don’t know what was worse this week; the fact that I entered my very first class as a GTA (Graduate Teaching Assistant) after all my darling freshmen were in their chairs, or the fact that my shoes gave me blisters this week. I think it’s the shoes. They are mad at me, and they have chosen this week for revenge. My good shoes have gone bad. And it’s really not my fault.
If you knew my weight gain story or my history as a teen, you would understand that I have several pairs of shoes for each occasion. My teaching shoes are no different; these are the shoes that are comfortable, have very low heels, and sometimes they even border on “cute.” They are all neutral colors, like black, brown, and “natural,” so they match with everything, and they are very practical. Other teachers will understand this. I also have some purple and cranberry, because sometimes I don’t want to dress neutral or practical.
I left the public school system in December 2006. Since then, I have been working on tennis courts in the private sector, and the only time I wear cute shoes are when my husband and I go somewhere nice. I have not worn my practical teaching shoes in almost nine years. So why, oh why, was I surprised when all hell broke loose Monday morning as I dressed for my first classroom appearance?
I will tell you why. The first pair of shoes felt too loose, and when I
looked harder, they had literally blown out of the sides. The next pair had the same problem at the seems; and just like that, I was minus two pairs of shoes. When I tried to put on yet another favorite old pair, my feet were so swollen from my weight gain that I could not fit into my own shoes! Before I fell into despair, I found a pair that I often wear to church in the hot months. They are cute little ballet flats and cream colored, so on this Cinderella’s feet they went, and off to the ball–I mean, class– I went.
I have not been on this campus the first day of school in the morning, so it never occurred to me that I would need more than an hour to find a parking spot. I ended up parking a mile–yes, a flippin’ MILE–away from my office, which is three buildings away from my classroom. I’ll make this brief. After a mile hike to my office, walking to the class, walking around class for three hours, trekking back to my office and another MILE back to my car (which was now at the end of an abandoned parking lot), I had an impressive blister on my pinky toe. And the next “visit” to campus, even though I drove to school an hour earlier, I had two more blisters in different places. This Cinderella was feeling pretty miserable.
My feet were a wreck, and they were complaining about all the abuse. So, since I am a person of action and planning, here is my plan on how to avoid a repeat week.
1. Appreciate the fact that I have an 11:00 class, but get to campus at 8:30 to find a better parking spot. Added bonus here: more time to study my notes and finish my own homework.
2. Wear tennis shoes on Monday. Trust me: I have some cute ones. Because nobody wants to see my feet yet. They are not even ready for a pedicure.
3. Go shopping. This Cupcake is going to suck it up, and go find some practical but cute black shoes. Seriously, what self-respecting teacher doesn’t have black shoes in her closet? Oh, yeah: me. Don’t judge! Coaches don’t need heels on tennis courts.
4. Shop smart. Buy some of those bootie panty-hose things for ballet shoes. How bad is it that I have no idea what the proper name is? I am confident that I will find them in the sock section. Or the hose section. Or anywhere in DSW.
5. Find reasons to wear more cute shoes so my feet get tougher. Of course, some of you are going ,”Duh!” Honestly, this whole experience of working on my MA, teaching First Year Composition, teaching tennis, and giving my husband and my dogs the attention they deserve, does not really lend itself to going out more. But I will give it a try.
So, what advice can you give me today?
As always, let me know how it’s going, and stay frosted!