For the first couple years that I was a teacher, I was well-dressed. I wore skirts and heels all the time. No frumpy jumpers or khaki pants for me. Many people don't treat teaching as a profession, and I wanted it to be clear that I WAS a professional, not somebody that woke up one day and said, "Well, crap. I guess I can just go be a teacher or something." In my opinion, if you want to be treated like a professional, you need to look like a professional. Plus, I liked having my kids say that I always looked cute, and let's be honest... every woman feels better about herself when she is wearing a sassy set of high heels.
Fast forward to years 6-7 of teaching..... you were lucky if you caught me in a skirt. I had about 4 pairs of black pants that I alternated, depending on which ones fit. Give me a twinset of any color and I'm good to go. Flat black shoes were the obvious choice, because after all, they were much more practical for a teacher that walks around for 6 hours each day. (I was not the kind of teacher you find at her desk. Proximity is the key to classroom management and eventually the kids realize that you really DO have eyes in the back of your head.) Anyway, while I still did my best to appear professional every day, let's just say I was a lot less cute than I was my first 5 years.
So anyway, I switched jobs and got to start wearing heels again. I swear, wearing cute shoes can make a big difference in your life. (***Just so we are clear, YES, I understand how ridiculous that sounds. See disclaimer on the left.***) I bought like 5 new pairs of really cute heels, most of them black, and pranced around in my cubicle like I was a CEO or something. And then....
It started slowly. Occasionally, I noticed that my left foot hurt. Not always, it kind of depended on what shoes I had worn. But gradually, it got worse. Sometimes my big toe went kind of numb. I had to face it... I was 30 years old with a bunion. Not a big, bad bunion like your grandmother has, but a little bunion that was already starting to cause discomfort. Fortunately, the neighbor across the street, Harvey, is a podiatrist, and I knew that he would tell me the truth. He said, yes - you do have a bunion but there is no rush to get it removed. I said, "Will I have to get surgery on it eventually?" He said "yes." I said, "Is there any reason I wouldn't want to do it now before it gets bad?" He said, "No, it's just that it takes about 8 weeks out of your life to heal and I know you like to be a little more active than that." Well, long story short, I decided to go ahead with it.
RIGHT AFTER THE PROCEDURE: (They wrote "yes" on my leg in permanent marker so that Harvey would be sure to operate on the correct foot.)
WITHOUT THE BOOT: (My big toe got purple and yellow bruises and was all swollen.)
And finally, AFTER:
I had to go in once a week to get the bandages redone, and I have to go one more time on Thursday. Hopefully at that point I will get to move from the boot to a tennis shoe. (I would have gotten to already, but I stubbed my foot and jostled the bone. So I have to be "really careful" this week.)
So, in closing, here is my advice: If you are currently in a job where you spend lots of time on your feet, invest in some really cute flat shoes. You'll still be cute, and while you won't have a totally awesome scar like the one I'll have, you will never have to tell people, "I had a bunionectomy."