To My Dear Black Sneakers,
We’ve been through so much together. We first met five years ago when my new movie theater job required that I have all black sneakers. I was frustrated about having to go out and drop money on new shoes simply because the black sneakers I was already in a relationship with had a light gray strip on them and they weren’t allowed. I walked into the independent shoe store near my house, and I was somehow magically drawn to you. We’ve been pretty much inseparable since then.
We’ve spent seven days a week together since; we went to class together Monday through Thursday and to work Friday through Sunday. You supported me during those long 14 hour shifts spent selling popcorn and cleaning up theaters. We went to bars together, experienced first loves together, and traveled around the country together. But most importantly, we got through a pretty nasty diagnosis together.
Nobody understood the frustration that comes from not being able to wear 95% of the shoes on the market without some sort of pain. It’s expected that women my age wear heels when they go out partying. Friends made (eh, still make) fun of me for wearing nothing but sneakers. But you understood. You made sure to keep me comfortable and pain free, at least in terms of my extremely swollen and achy feet. You’ll never understand how appreciative I am of that.
Unfortunately, my doctors don’t want us together anymore. The podiatrist I saw a few weeks ago said that you’re old and worn down, and that you’ll be unable to care for my needs much longer. Even the custom inserts that are being made for my shoes won’t be able to salvage our relationship. Besides, my feet have become so swollen from the RA that I’ve gone up half a shoe size since we first met. People grow and change; you need to understand that.
As sad as it is to say, I’ve already replaced you; there’s a box containing brand new sneakers sitting on a chair in the kitchen. If it makes you feel better, they aren’t Nikes and they aren’t black. Doc wants me to wear New Balance or Asics from now on for their extra support, but finding all black sneakers in those brands is turning out to be an impossible task.
Please comfort yourself with the fact that you are the longest relationship I’ve ever maintained thus far.