Does it serve you, grow you or make you happy?

18 Aug

A few years ago I bought a pair of red sparkly peep toe high heels. I believe they were purchased for the Valentine’s Day party I was having. This was back in my party planner/Martha Stewart phase. I  decided that I was going to throw a sexy soirée and transformed my sun porch into Aladdin’s Harem. My transformation came complete with sheer fabric draping from the ceiling, plush pillows lining the floors and candles everywhere. Even the chip and dip bowls, the serving platters and ice cube trays were heart shaped. I left no rock unturned. I invited my sexy single friends as well as couples and after everything was perfectly in place I donned my sexiest spaghetti strapped, satin body hugging dress AND my red sparkly peep toe heels.

Did I mention that the shoes barely fit?

When I first went looking for shoes for my party I knew I had to have a pair of sexy red shoes. I didn’t think this would be too hard to find seeing as though it was right before Valentine’s Day. Surely all of the stores would be stocked to take advantage of shoppers like me. I went around to a couple of stores and finally saw the shoes I KNEW I had to have. I rummaged through the selection but couldn’t find a pair my size. They were all either too big or too small but none were just right.

So I did the respectable thing that every woman has done at least once in her life. I bought the pair that was half a size too small. LOL! I figured I could stretch them. I could walk around in them in two pairs of sweat socks (this is a known and proven trick for breaking in high heels btw) and by the time the party rolled around they would fit like a charm. Right?


Those shoes hurt like a S.O.B.! LOL !!! And I do mean hurt. But having committed to being the hostess with the mostest, I pitter-pattered around greeting guests, socializing, pouring drinks, refreshing hors d’oeuvres and ensuring the fondue stayed warm.  I was the consummate hostess until the last guest left and then finally I was able to pry my swollen, oxygen deprived feet out of those heinous shoes. I was so happy to be rid of them that I immediately walked to the trash can and threw them away.

Well, that’s what I should have done.

I knew the shoes didn’t fit when I bought them. No amount of stretching could have made those shoes comfortable. And even after walking around looking constipated for 3 hours I took them off and placed them lovingly in my closet. Even knowing what I knew about those shoes and after 5 moves to varying parts of the city, as I type this blog I can still look up and see them sitting cozily on my shoe shelf amongst all my other awesome shoes. What’s even crazier is I have no idea why I still keep them.

A couple of years ago I heard this quote on Oprah. “Respect yourself enough to walk away from anything that no longer serves you, grows you, or makes you happy”. These shoes never filled any of those criteria. If anything, they just made me miserable and feel inadequate. Why can’t I have little feet?!?! (Laughing but serious).  If anything these shoes just reminded me of something that I’d never be and never have.

Clearly, I’m using these shoes in an analogous fashion. The shoes represent dreams, ideas, ideals, feelings, perspectives, people, and thoughts that we keep around for seasons, for years, for decades and in some cases for lifetimes that do nothing more than remind us of our shortcomings, inadequacies, and failures.  We keep these things and move them around with us to varying stages of our life as if to remind us of what? How far we’ve come or how far we have to go? Who we are or who we aren’t? I guess negative motivation can sometimes have a positive outcome. But negative plus positive has never equaled positive. You can keep a picture of yourself in your wallet to remind you of all the weight you’ve lost, but what are you really saying about yourself? I was overweight once and I can be overweight again? Humm..does not seem like you learned much then does it?

Seriously, why mind fuck yourself like that?

I fully admit/disclose that I have a GED. I didn’t graduate from high school. But I don’t have my certificate hanging on my wall. I do have a space for my bachelor’s degree as well as the MBA I hope to one day earn. Those accomplishments show me not the mistakes I’ve made but the triumphs, the growth, and the wins I’ve accumulated along the way.

While I’ve come a long way I am the first to admit that I still have a lot of growing to do. There are days when I still struggle with body image issues (thanks for nothing eating disorder) and days when I think I should give up on wanting to get married (more days than I care to admit.) But on those days, I just ask myself if it serves me, grows me or makes me happy and then decide if it’s a thought (idea, ideal, person etc.) to trash or to treasure.



One Response to “Does it serve you, grow you or make you happy?”

  1. NATASHA JONES (@njones1920) August 18, 2013 at 1:43 pm #

    Great analogy with the shoes! I think we have all done that before…lol Unfortunately, some of us continue to do it with other issues in our life, trying to force something that will never fit! A great way to look at new issues, relationships, does it serve, grow or make you happy….YESSSSSS!!!!!!!!

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