When i was growing up, in the woods, in Maine, as soon as May rolled around, and there was no snow except for the huge chunk of half-ice, half-crystalized pellets, we stopped wearing shoes.
All day, every day. No shoes.
The neighbors teased us about getting roundworms, and we were those kids who showed up to Walmart or the grocery store with no shoes on and had to wait outside or sit in the cart at 8-10 years old.
It was my Easter tradition for years to play violin on stage with no shoes on.
We also had lofts for beds growing up, so we climbed a rope ladder for years to get up and down from our beds. (That toughened up the balls of my feet like you wouldn’t believe!)
In 2012, i was constantly in trouble with the camp nurse and handyman at Word of Life Ranch because i would do things like ride on the back bumper of the maintenance van when we went off-roading and run around with no shoes on. Hint :New York State law is not very keen on stuff like that!
In 2013, i became a lifeguard. Now i finally had permission to strut around campus with no shoes on, ever!
Of course, like normal kids, we got slivers, glass and one brother even got a nail in his foot, but it wasn’t anything some peroxide and a band-aid couldn’t fix.
Kids are going to get boo-boos; physically hurt one way or another, and it’s important to teach them not to be afraid of that.
Over the course of all those years, i noticed i personally walk on the outside edge of my feet; my weight isn’t completely evenly distributed, naturally, and i also have tough callouses/cracked skin on my heels. I don’t know if those are really problems or “cons” to not wearing shoes, as it were, they’re just something i noticed.
Other things i did notice, are definitely positives, no questions about it.
I have impeccable balance. I’m a klutz with an astigmatism and depth-perception issues, so it’s definitely not anything to do with my eyes or my ears; i strongly believe it has to do with my feet. i’m constantly tripping over, and bumping into things, but i never actually hit the ground and i regain control quickly.
I also have excellent arches. I just purchased my first pair of heels in the past year, so i never wore those my whole life, and i can stand on my toes for as long as you’d like.
My joints and the balls of my feet have excellent support and i can jump off anything and land without my ankles hurting or buckling.
All that said, I’m super excited for the summer and the benefits that come from not wearing shoes!! While i know it doesn’t work for everyone and some people need the extra support (i’ve found even i need some more in my “old age” haha), I’ve seen all those benefits, especially in my ankles and balls of my feet, that even my peers don’t have.
I also plan on going barefoot for my wedding! ^_^
Q of the Day – What are your personal opinions about shoes? Do you need the support or are you worried about germs?