Most people who know me know that I'm pretty obsessed with fashion (like to a fault), but that I really have a shoe fetish.
And many people know that a few years ago in graduate school, I decided to channel that shoe fetish into something productive and start writing a memoir about events in my life through the shoes I was wearing when they happened.
Sometimes I use this as an excuse to buy new shoes - because more writing material, right?
I can justify it sometimes... and that's just what I did a couple days ago in Macy's in New York City. The nine floor Macy's that I was SO EXCITED to go into for the second time in my life.
So here's the beginning of the story of the shoes I got at Macy's:
I don't think I would've ever seen them had we not had to go to the bathroom so badly. Literally the four of us - Joellyn, Ashley, Carol, and I were running through the men's section, then the shoes, searching for a bathroom because the one at TGI Friday's was a one-person bathroom and who has time for that when Macy's is around the corner???
Shoes were catching my eye as we ran by - wedges, sparkly heels, booties with fringe, UGHH!!! But we were about to explode.
Finally, we found a nice Macy's employee who told us the restroom was right by the Finish Line section. After everyone relieved themselves, we stood around in the Finish Line section for a minute and in that minute, a pair of New Balance sneakers called my name. Loud and clear. Ohhhh man they were fresh.
I've been in the market for new tennis shoes, but haven't had the time to properly search for some. Since it's important to have good support when working out, and sneakers are more expensive than most other shoes I'd buy, and because I really only need one pair, I wanted to take my time in finding the perfect ones. The ones I always wear are Nikes from like four years ago, and they're still in good shape, but they're getting a little worn, and I heard it's good to switch it up kinda frequently. So I have been planning to find the perfect new ones but there are SO many color combinations and brands and... I got a headache just thinking about it.
ANYWAY, when I saw these particular shoes, I immediately knew I didn't have to look at all. Like there was no question, I wanted to try these on and buy them.
(Sometimes in life that's how it is, and I love when it's like that because I'm such an indecisive person when it comes to the small things, and I frustrate myself being that way! So it's really nice when I see something I know I have to have and I don't have to think about it. Like how I've always wanted to teach at Southwest and when offered the job I immediately accepted with no hesitation, or how I didn't even go car shopping with the Black Pearl; I randomly saw it and test drove it and knew it was everything I've always wanted and I bought it the next day. Sometimes you don't have to look around.)
And ever since I started my memoir, I am very intentional with the shoes I wear and when I wear them and when and where I buy shoes. I know that sounds weird, but I'm actually very intentional with a lot of things I do, and most have good or special reasons - even down to my choice of clothing. And I enjoy being this way even if it's weird.
So with all these thoughts swimming in my head, I told myself that buying my next pair of sneakers would be ten times cooler if I bought them in the nine floor Macy's on an amazing New York City trip with great friends, right before I started a new chapter in life with a new job ahead of me etc etc.
I've literally wanted a pair of New Balances since high school, and once I tried them on, I realized they are my high school colors, which are now the colors of the school I'll be teaching at because it's the same school.
"I can wear them to work on school spirit days!" I thought.
Done! I bought those mint green, black, and white gems and felt great about it. They already had a story and I couldn't wait to wear them and have tons of adventures in them to write about.
Today I broke them out and the first place I wore them to was lunch with Michael, our mother, and our Granny. We went to a Chinese place and my brother and I were laughing and making up stupid (but creative) stories about raccoons (Granny's house got invaded by raccoons last month-long story hahah) and enjoying life and the gentleman behind us (who had been eating by himself) got up and informed us that our raccoon stories were so vivid and funny that they made his day. He went on and on about how great it was to see people being joyful and creative and ended up paying for our meal! We couldn't stop laughing because Granny wasn't amused (still traumatized from the real-life raccoon ordeal) but it really was a sweet event.
The next place I wore the shoes was to my NEW job / old high school.
My mom and brother helped me carry boxes of stuff from my old classroom into the new one - the one that I had 11th grade English in. I'm gonna write more about that later, because I'm going to need a whole post for how I feel about that room!
I will say, though, that going in there was so natural. Just like going home. And not a comfort zone feeling - like a challenging but comforting feeling. If that makes any sense at all.
Before we left, I had my brother take a picture of me in my new classroom - the classroom where it really all started for me. And obviously I'm super excited about it. I was cheesin' hard. In my new shoes. In my classroom. With a window. And the excitement, mystery, and promise of a new year of growth, memories, challenges, and triumphs.
Throughout the rest of the day, the more I thought about it, the more my hasty shoe decision started to make sense to me. I could've easily been attracted to another brand, but I think that the name
"New Balance" in itself is enough. Like that might sound dumb, but really... I'll still wear my old sneakers, but they have been through so much with me that I kind of want to leave behind, because they've served their purpose and now I'm starting new chapters and adventures in my life.
So a fresh pair that literally and figuratively provides "new balance" for my new adventures and my new perspectives and reaching new heights makes perfect sense!