Sophie’s New Shoes


After an unfortunate incident involving our wooden deck and Sophie’s bare feet, an incident which left me questioning my skills as a mother, Sophie and I made our first trip to Stride Rite—where my parents bought me shoes when I was a little girl—for her first real pair of shoes.

Sophie, apparently, has small feet. She wears a 2-1/2 (wide). So I had four pairs of shoes to choose from. I turned a couple over. Each sticker said $45. “How long will these last?” I asked. The saleswoman smiled and said, “Unfortunately, at this age, sometimes only three months.” I looked back at my choices. “Are any on sale?” I asked.

My mom always taught me that good shoes are important—and after the splinter incident I knew Sophie needed a good pair of shoes. Bare feet may be best when learning to walk but Sophie hates grass and she doesn’t like to stay on the outdoor rug we recently purchased for the deck.

Thankfully, they did have a pair on sale. And thankfully, Sophie loves them. If she spots one on the floor she’ll crawl over to it, pick it up and then bring it to me so I can put it on.

I was, however, amazed at how dirty they got so quickly. A damp cloth makes them look a little better, but I don’t mind the dirt—it’s proof of exploration, crawling, cruising, walking and discovering an old, old world that to her is still so new.

“The one thing children wear out faster than shoes is parents.” —John J. Plomp