I remember being self-conscious about how I walked. Imagined people looking and judging how my feet and legs moved and how my shoulders swayed. Judging my personality by watching my movements. I recall, walking home from school, being told that I walked like a horse. My foot swinging out and forward in an arch with a CLOMP as my foot hit the ground (rather than the heel to toe motion normal people have). I consciously tried to place my feet properly, only adding awkwardness to the whole experience.
Today my feet hurt. I have blisters on the back of my heels from ill-fitting shoes. Over the years of purposeful foot placement I have come to realize that I have a twist in my step (along with that CLOMP). It dawned on me today that these things are cause and effect. It’s the twist that causes the shoe to rub. It’s an attempt to prevent the rub causing me to CLOMP- walking with the weight on my toes so I don’t press the red raw heel to the back of the shoe. Now I get it! I do walk like a horse!
Instead of being hyper aware of my awkward walk. I should have embraced the twist in my step. It should have been my signature sway. Something to own. Not to be ashamed of. Then the comments wouldn’t have been painful memories. They might have been inspiration for laughter and fond memories.
Do you wish you could override your memories and turn them into what they should have been? Can we? Should we?