Thursday, March 20, 2008

Feet First

We all have our flaws.

I have a lot of them.

A LOT Of them.

Somehow, I manage to make most of them work though, or I'm adept at covering them up.

For example, for my horrendous undereye circles, I have to slather on industrial strength concealer (Amazing Cosmetics and Dermablend make...amazing...ones). Here's a new tip if you suffer from them too - a very sheer dab of orangey red lipstick on top of your bluest part works wonders. That's right, RED. I saw this tip in Shape magazine and it does work - orange/red counteracts blue, just make sure it's a sheer amount and that you use a yellow-based concealer (a shade lighter than your skintone) on top.

For my flat hair, I used bodyfying shampoo and try and keep conditioner only on the ends (though after Hawaiian surf, I'm slathering it everywhere...also contemplating cutting my hair above my shoulders for summer....). I also blow-dry my roots with my head upside down.

I'm not going to delve too much into my secrets or my flaws, because why on earth would I expose what I am trying to hide.

But one thing that I am coming to terms with - my biggest flaw - is my feet.

As you may know (I've blogged about this before), I was born with club feet and after 6 years of casts on them, they are finally normalesque. I mean, they work like feet, look like feet, point in the right direction etc.

But they are ugly motherfuckers. My heels are heavily calloused because I walk heel first, I can't stand on my toes (ligiments too tight), my ankle bones jut out because...actually, I'm not sure why that is, and I have horrible scars on the insides of my leg running from my arch to just past the ankles. Apparently, this is where they repeatedly cut my feet open and replaced all the bones. With what, I am not sure - my feet have never set off any metal detectors...

So, because of having this FLAW my whole entire life, I have made some sacrifices.

I don't ever show my feet - EVER. Boots are my best friends. I can't wear pretty, sexy stiletto heels. Going to the beach is a nightmare. Etc.

But, honestly, this all sucks and I am getting pretty sick of it. I wanna be able to wear a breezy summer dress without having to cover up with boots or a pair of socks (now I actually would wear boots even if I didn't have foot problems because I love the look of them, but in the dead of summer, it's a no-no).

So, over the past two years, I've come to a sort of compromise. I've been able to wear breezy dresses and still have cute shoes, without feeling like people are judging me because of some ugly scars...

Behold: Gladiator sandals!


OK, maybe one day I'll be brave enough, and not give a shit enough about what people think, to go wearing any shoe I damn well please. But when I am trying to look pretty - say wearing a nice dress - I'd rather not my ugly feet ruin the whole look. And then you get the pitying stares and glances and though I was subjected to a lot of it recently in Hawaii (I wasn't about to wear espadrilles on the beach), it something I like to avoid if possible.

Which is why I welcome the above shoes. They are stylish (in my opinion) funky and most of all, they let me feel pretty. And that is something that is priceless.

Which is a good thing, considering my latest purchases are these UGG Espadrilles with sooo fluffy sheepskin soles. Feels like you are walking barefoot on a sheepskin rug:

These way cool, gladiator-themed, leather Jeffrey Campbell sandals - with tie-up ankle cuff that happens to be so IN this year - that look so buttery and rich, that I can't wait to pair them with a really delicate dress (available from Urban Outfitters):

And, most recently, the creme de la creme....Christian Louboutin sandals (as seen on Carmen Electra):

Now I know these last ones are some pretty pricey shoes...but I figure, for someone like me who has been dreaming about having wonderful designer shoes all her life but knowing she could never wear them, this will actually make me look forward to showing off my feet all summer.

And that's flawless.

PS - Keeping with the whole no-bitterness theme I'm trying to get going on in my life, I must share some heartening information with you.

You see, I wrote this post the other day and afterwards, I decided to read up online about this disability that has truly disabled me from doing many things with my life.

Well you know what? I'm pretty damn lucky. After perusing the message boards I have learned the following:

-1 in 1,000 people in North America and the UK are born with club feet (50% have it in both feet, like I did)

-The majority of people seem to be in pain every single day, so much that they discuss the best painkillers to take. They have it regardless of what activities they do and it spreads from the feet all the way to the knees. Most can only wear special orthopedic shoes. I ONLY get pain if I walk for 8 hours a day, or stand around a lot or wear really nasty shoes. And even then, I have never once popped a painkiller for it.

-A lot of people are teased for the way they walk, as they limp around. Now, I WAS teased when I was young but I corrected the way I walked, all by myself. Now, my walk is still unusual as my hips are quite relaxed - it's been compared to Marilyn Monroe's wiggle walk - but people just think I'm trying to be sexy or something, they don't think I've got something wrong with me. Somedays I do find I am limping though but I think that's usually the fault of bad shoes, injury or just waking up with stiff legs.

-A lot of people have other things wrong with them...hammer toes, missing toes, no heel (I have too much heel), so it makes me extremely grateful that I just have ugly scars.

-Famous people with club feet include: Troy Aikman, Mia Hamm, Kristi Yamaguchi, Damon Wayans, Dudley Moore ( a lot more sports players than actors - guess it shows the businesses that rely on vanity don't get it, but with sports, as long as you can play well, who cares).

All in all, after reading all this stuff, I realized that yes, compared to the rest of "normal" society, I do have a birth defect/disability. But compared to most people with said defect, I actually have it quite good. Yes, I have scars but I would rather take that over pain any day and I am grateful to God for keeping me pain-free and able all these years.

And I can wear really neat shoes sometimes.


Delicieux said...

Hooray for not being bitter about your scars!! :)

I'm sure the rockstar loves your feet....

word vomit said...

Your feet have taken you all over the world to some really neat places and because of this I am jealous of them!

arbyn said...

leave it to you to mix scars and fashion. good tips!

M said...

I love word vomit's comment so I'm going to totally agree with that! :D

Coconut said...

I love your shoe choices! Way to go for being positive and optimistic as well.

Karinaxoxo said...

I always feel better about my flaws when I remember that there are people at lot worse off then me. Some people don't have feet/legs at all. Or have terrible scars on their face or somewhere really obvious!
I agree with Word Vomit's comment!
Good on you for not being bitter about it! Life gave you lemons so you made lemondade (is that how that saying goes?!?!) Wedges, Gladiator and Espardrilles are you signature thing and you rock them well!!!

kiki said...

to be honest, everything you have mentioned here cannot be classified as 'flaws;' but rather display a much greater flaw: Vanity

Sheila (Charm School Reject) said...

Kiki, you're a douche.

Karina, you're fantastic and beautiful.

Nicole said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

You are far from alone with your feet - visit