Thursday, January 3, 2013

New Shoes

We took my 10 year old to buy new shoes and, turns out, he has man feet.

The tiny premature boy, who shivered his way into the world one rainy day in November, a decade ago in a North London hospital, no longer fits anything in the children's shoe department.

"Some babies are just ready early," the special care nurse had said, as my little man lay there with a breathing tube up his nose. so small and blue-white and vulnerable.

We didn't believe her at first. It looked like we might lose him. But it turned out she was right after all,  and that was the first (and I expect last) time he was,  or will ever be,  'ready early' for anything.

Using the contraption in the store, I had measured his feet.
Adult size 7.

My other half laughed, patted him, proudly, on the back and called him "Flipper "  - only to receive a stern talking to from our 5 year old about "name calling" and how it can easily be classified as "bullying."

My 5 year old stared. Marveling at the giant expanse of foot,  he commiserated that this would mean there'd be no chance of shoes that light up when you walk - a complete disaster from my 5 year old's point of view.

I worried he might be embarrassed.

"It's a good thing to have big feet, honey, because then you won't blow over in a strong wind, " I said, using the logic that had been used on me.
My 10 year old, stretched his legs, stood up and then walking up and down in his new shoes to test the comfort, said, "I need to have big feet, because I have a long way to travel."

When I check on him last thing at night, tucking his blanket around him, I see him as I did 10 years ago, even though he's far from small and not blue-white or shivering.
Then, closing the door, I can't help but snigger at the humungous great toes sticking out the end of his childhood bed.

My 10 year old son has man feet.