My feet hate shoes. They can’t help it – from the day I was born until now, they have rebelled against wearing any form of footwear for a prolonged period of time. Plus I use my feet all the time – for walking…inside and outside. So the upside is getting to be barefoot most of my life…
And all my favorite activities can be done barefoot: reading, cooking, baking, reading, moving, belly dancing, T’ai Chi and Hot Yoga. And now for the downside – at least for others.
My feet bottoms are really not pristine. And by ‘not pristine’ I mean completely horrifying. Probably permanently dark on the underside, definitely cracked around the heels, and split around the pads near the smaller toes. I’m sure they look appalling to people with perfect feet bottoms, and to people that think you can just plop some lotion on those things to get the hideous out. I doesn’t work, believe me, I’ve tried. I use pumice, lotion, exfoliating scrubs, special soaps, etc. To no avail. I really beat up my feet belly dancing – especially on carpet – they haven’t recovered from that, and believe me, it’s been YEARS since I danced in troupe.
So when I began practicing Hot Yoga, I was really worried about what people must be thinking about my very Horrible-Looking-But-I-Scrubbed-Them-Frantically-And-This-As-Clean-As-I-Can-Get-Them feet. It was even worse when I read some blog posts about people mentioning having too LOOK at feet like mine. I had no idea that Hot Yoga would have us laying down for a long time and that we would sometimes be packed in rows like sweaty sardines – able to scrutinize my obvious flaws.
But here’s the upside to that – at least my toes are not hairy. No wait – that’s just a bonus…the upside I decided, was that working in a practice and being in the Yogi-State-Of-Mind, should mean that you’re working to NOT be bothered by something as inconsequential as the state of my feet bottoms.
So now I feel like my feet are there as sort of a meditative device to help you accept cracked heels that cannot repair, and be OK with feet bottoms that are not pristine and flesh colored. One day you’ll thank me…
But kidding aside, I realized pretty quickly into my practice that once I’m in the hot room and doing my thing – I hardly notice anything about anyone else. Some days it’s all I can do to even keep myself comfortable in a posture – much less be taking inventory of people’s body parts. I’m pretty sure this is what’s going on with my surrounding Yogis as well. At least I’m hoping fervently that this is the case.
So if I’ve ever given offence with my feet – for that I am sorry. They are ‘clean’ – but well used. And they are not scenty – that’s as big a bonus as not having hairy toes, don’t ya think?