Every young girl dreams of someday finding her Prince Charming – of being magically transformed into a vision of loveliness – of finding true love and living happily ever after. On our wedding day, we feel like a princess, dressed in pure glory from top to bottom – unsure of what the future holds, yet determined to fight for it.
When you’ve lived together as man and wife for over 54 years, some of that fairy dust wears away and you’re left with reality. No longer are you able to spend a fortune on clothes. Your focus turns away from yourself and on to those you love. Your self sacrifice is unnoticed, but necessary. It is at the core of true love.
Life has a way of sneaking up on us. We notice it more when the young ones fly the coop. Little things get under our skin. As we age, I think we lose some of our positivity, because we’ve experienced the hard times – the sad times – the ugly times and all the junk that goes with those times.
I could write an epistle about all the disappointments, failures and unfulfilled goals, but I don’t want to depress you. The truth is, all those things are gifts to make us stronger. “Sure,” you say. How can a sick child or a dying loved one make you tougher? How can a business failure make you wiser? How does any crud that comes your way, temper you and refine you?
I am about to give you an example. For many, many years I have taken very poor care of my feet – those two little appendages which have supported this overweight body for 76 years. When I was in my early twenties, I wore stilettos which raised my arches even higher than they already were. As a housewife, I’d get down on my hands and knees to scrub the floor. As I did this task, my feet were bare and calluses formed on the tops of them. I often went barefoot or wore shoes I purchased at a second hand store. My feet became swollen along with the rest of me, when I was pregnant. During that time, I didn’t even know I had feet, because I couldn’t see them.
My story is like most women’s. We often forget about taking care of our base. – the platform upon which we establish our everyday living. I finally went to see a podiatrist. From there, my Prince Charming, took me to an upscale shoe store and filled a prescription for shoe inserts. Not only that, my dear Prince popped for some very expensive, sensible shoes. I’ve never paid more than $50 for a pair of shoes in my life!
I feel like Cinderella. I wore those shoes yesterday and felt the beginning of a transformation. I was walking taller. I was taking longer steps. I felt confident. To top it off, these are not like my grandmother’s sensible shoes – they’re actually cute.
“For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. Therefore lift your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but rather be healed. ” Hebrews 12:11-13