My mother says “when your feet hurt, everything hurts.” Mothers have said that for generations. They are right.
Our feet hold all our weight when we stand. Our toes bend and flex when we walk, run, skip and climb. Our heels help steady us. Our feet are an intricate masterpiece, with so many bones, ligaments, nerve endings, all working together to help us navigate through our day. We don’t think about our feet much. Most of us take them for granted. . . until something goes wrong.
A corn, cramp, bunion, stubbed toe or fallen arch, hurt and remind us that we need to take care of our feet to feel good in the rest of our body. High-heeled women’s shoes wreak havoc on feet. “Wear sensible shoes”, our mothers tell us. They are right. How about the current fad of flip-flops as the every day “shoe” for children and many adults? No support and having to squeeze the first two toes to walk up or down a step can’t be great for foot health. We go for what we like. . . until something goes wrong.
I’ve been thinking a lot about feet the last few days. Taking a late summer break from teaching Tai Chi classes, it was a perfect time to get rid of some plantar’s warts I had on my left foot. Researching all treatment possibilities. I chose one from a podiatrist, using acid to eat away at the warts. My big toe blistered, to the point that I couldn’t put any weight on that toe. I placed my weight on my heel, then on the outside of my foot. Over a few days, my foot swelled up and I could hardly put any weight on it at all.
No break, but lots of swelling. I’m wearing a boot to stabilize my foot. My leg tires easily. I think of placing my legs and feet hip-width apart, standing tall, in proper alignment. I can’t do that right now, so I’ll visualize it as though I could.
I’m reminded of how important the Tai Chi principles of proper alignment and weight shifting are, for good energy flow and good health. Patience is another important principle of Tai Chi. I hope to be patient to return to proper alignment.
And, I look forward to a healed foot, because “when your feet hurt, everything hurts.