Bye bye lovely shoes
I has a bunion. Apparently its proper name is hallux valgus which sounds just as grim as 'bunion' but in a latiny way. Mine isn't very big yet, but looking at my mum's feet and remembering what my grandma's feet looked like, it has the potential to get pretty toe-deformingly large.
I've had pain in my big toe for about a year, but it was one of those niggly things that wasn't really bad enough to go to the doctors with, so I ignored it. It wasn't until a rare sunny day a couple of weeks ago when I was wearing flip flops and happened to glance down at my feet that I noticed the knuckle joint at the base of my left big toe (do toes have knuckles?) was considerably larger than the one on my right toe. Ewwwww.
Off I hobbled to the doctors, to be given an information sheet and told to 'wear sensible shoes'. I went home and looked at my shoes. All 26 pairs. Then I tried them all on. And sent half of them to a charity shop and put the rest on eBay. And then spent the next two weeks looking in every shoe shop in Lancashire for sensible shoes that didn't make me want to poke my eyes out with a stilletoe heel.
Hello sensibleness. Don't worry, I didn't buy these.
I have found two pairs that fit the bill - enough room to wiggle toes, no heel, no pointyness. Some lovely boots from good old M&S, and some boring but 'they'll do for work' black shoes from Tesco, of all places. I'm really struggling with the no heel rule. I'm no willowy thing, more like a little shrub, and I am currently trying to work out how to wear a mid-length skirt and flat shoes without looking like a complete frump. Because if I can't do this, then half my work wardrobe will join the shoes on eBay :(
But what's more unsettling is the deep and probing questions about my life that the discovery of the bunion has prompted. In my mind, no heels = no nights out. This shouldn't really be a massive burden to bear - I last went 'out' properly in May for my sister-in-law's hen do, so it's not exactly a weekly occurence. But then I started thinking about going out, and how I miss it, and how I would love a big girly night out with heels and gin and tunes and a bit of sparkle and maybe an illicit fag at 2am and dancing and lipgloss and giggling.
I used to have nights like that, but there haven't been any since Munchkin arrived. Partly it's because I don't have the same circle of friends any more - we moved up north shortly before Munchkin was born, so all the friends I have here I know within the context of motherhood, rather than from uni or school or work. But should that make any difference? None of my fellow mother friends seem to be off into Manchester every weekend to drink dodgy cocktails and wear tottery shoes. Should I have grown out of wanting nights like that by now? (I'm 34 and three quarters). Mr pickledweasel was never really one for nights out anyway, so I'm hardly likely to be able to drag him away from crappy tv and early bed in an attempt to find out.
I have an uneasy feeling that if I did manage a night out I'd feel a) old b) guilty about spending money on cinzano and lemonade and taxis c) clueless about where to go, but it would be nice to give it a try. Unfortunately I doubt I'll find a partner in crime to accompany me or any shoes that are comfortable enough - maybe it's finally time to give up the idea and give in to the bunion :)