Try walking in my shoes before judging how I live

I wear shoes most days. Although I still prefer my barefoot moments, protecting my feet is way more important these days especially since I don’t have much feeling in them anymore. You’d be amazed at how many times I still bump my feet throughout the day from a wheelchair. My driving skills aren’t always that great, just ask the walls and doors.

My everyday shoes are a bit worn and scuffed even though I don’t walk in them any longer. I have been many places with them on my feet. If they could talk they would tell of things like how I once went to a surprise party to celebrate my birthday. I shed tears of joy that day and had a beautiful night filled with laughter and dancing. I felt unstoppable and on top of the world.

They would also tell of the day I went to the doctor’s office for tests because I was having a hard time walking, seeing and feeling parts of my face. That day was a day of tears too, but of sorrow not of joy. It was a day I wish I didn’t have to go through, but my shoes were with me and walked me down the sterile hallways of the hospital into the unknown. They saw my pain and felt my discomfort as a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis was made. If only they could talk.

No one has ever walked in my shoes. I doubt they could fit in them even if they tried. I think my shoes are a little like Cinderella’s…you know, how out of everybody in the kingdom, no one had a foot her size or could fit into her lost shoe. It’s amazing how not even one person could wear her shoe. It was unique to her.

I’ve heard it said that you can’t know someone until you’ve walked a mile in their shoes, yet for all the times I’ve heard that said, I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone actually doing it. Could you imagine a football player with a ginormous foot walking in a dainty girl’s shoes that were two sizes too small…for an entire mile? I doubt he would make it a few feet (no pun intended) let alone a mile.

People like to throw out opinions of how we should live our life and what our journey should look like, but in actuality, they don’t know the road we have to travel. Don’t allow someone to judge your pain or your response to the difficulties in life while standing in their own shoes, not once putting them aside to even try walking in yours first. They can’t know your pain, sorrow, happiness, joy, ups, downs, depression, heartache…they can’t know your life if they aren’t willing to set aside their own judgments to consider what your life is really like.

We each have our own journey and our own shoes to wear. When you put your shoes on today, remember how far you’ve come and the miles you’ve already been. Each scuff mark is a story of trying. Each smudge is a part of not giving up. And know this…your journey isn’t complete yet. You still have many, many miles to go.