“I refuse to go! No one touches my feet!”
That was my mom’s reaction when I stopped in front of a beautiful spa to give the female members in my East Coast family a treat. I had just spent seven hours in the car with my daughter and granddaughter to reach Delaware for some “Nanny” time.
My mom is the most put-together 91-year-old you’ll ever meet. She wears light blue and pink pastel sweaters to show off her blue eyes and snow white hair. She shows off her lithe figure in Gap Kids jeans. Her earrings always match her necklace, which matches the color sweater she’s selected for the day.
She wears Converse sneakers to look cool – and to hide her feet.
What is it about us women and our feet?
But by the time we’re 17, we wear shoes that squish our feet into narrow tubes and raise our heels to a height no foot, no matter how sexy, should ever aspire to.
Men know better. They wear flats from the age of 1 to 101.
But women? Like Cinderella’s stepsisters, we push, cajole, squeeze our naturally wide/plump/happy/fleshy feet into leather devices of torture.
And then we try to walk in them.
I’ll never forget when my 15-going-on-25-year-old niece once tried to explain to her dad why women walked in wounded pain every day. “It’s for the sex,” she said to my wide-eyed brother-in-law. “High heels raise the female rear end, which entices the male.”
Enticing or not, by the age of 40, we women do everything we can to hide our bunions, blisters and other unnatural feet disasters caused by the wrong (sexy?) shoe.
Bunions and hammer-toes grow with age, so by the time we’re, well, of a certain age, women’s feet can look rather monstrous. Thus, we hide them.
In flat shoes!
A pedicure can soothe the sores, massage the ankles, assuage the canker in our cantankerous toes. Thus, I figured a visit to a savory spa with our four-female-generation posse on this gloomy November weekend would be a perfect proposition.
Until my mom put both feet on the ground in brake position and refused to move.
Thankfully, my little granddaughter looked up at her great-grandmother and said as sweet as sugar, “Please, Nanny?”
With a pout and a fear that the staff would gasp in horror once she took her shoes off , my mom put one foot in front of the other and entered the building. Once her feet settled into the warm bubbly tub of scented water, her pout turned to a huge sigh of comfort.
The pedicure became a feat of feet-appreciation.
It only took 91 years to get there.
Images thanks to Google (except for the family photo – that’s thanks to Nanny).