Dear Internet,

It is nearly two years since my surgery and where I should be versus where I actually am are two wholly different things.

Whenever I get angry about the state of my feet, I seem to conveniently forget I was laid up for four months after surgery number one, on a wound vac for another two, then laid up again for another two months before finally being released from care nearly a year after the first surgery. Of course I’m not going to be where I think I should be at — nor would anyone else.

Logic and rational are not players in this game. When the world in my head is crashing, far easier to blame something you cannot control versus something you can.

In this case, the size of my feet.

This was much of my attitude this morning on my way to work. TheHusband had gifted me with a pair of fairly expensive ballet flats for the holidays, a pair similar to the brethren I purchased last summer. Instead of leather, however, the fabric was cloth so when I slid my feet into them the shoes had no stretch.

That is something I have to account for now post-surgery: my feet will be different sizes during the day and I need shoes to be flexible to fit that criteria. The company’s reputation for customer service was earned when a new pair in leather arrived on my doorstep, same size as the previously purchased pair, which I threw into my travel bag when I hopped a flight to San Francisco for a job interview in April.

During that trip, the new pair felt odd but I couldn’t put my finger on why the shoes felt weird. They went on easily enough but they didn’t fit right. I sized the new pair against their brethren and found the new pair was 1/2″ shorter than the pair I had been wearing for months. I contacted the company who sent me out another pair in the same size — maybe the first replacement was a mismatch? Nope. The now third pair of flats were matched up against my happily worn pair also had the same problem. Perhaps my original pair was the mismarked ones then? I sent the request in for another pair to exchange, this time for a size up which arrived the day of my birthday.

A size 12.

For some reason I’m recalling my first pair of adult shoes was purchased when I was 9 or 10, in a woman’s size 10. I have always not been tall, so size 10s at a young age made sense to me. I wore 10s for most of my early teenage years and into my 20s when the 10s stopped fitting — weight gain, arthritis, life — moved me into 11s. A few years ago when trying to size running shoes, the sales person tried to convince me I needed 12s not 11s and I laughed in her face. I don’t care WHAT your scale says, I wear 11s and then proceeded to stomp out the store in due form.

Because I apparently cannot have fat feet.

Feet change and they grow (and shrink!); they are not consistent no matter how much we want them to be. The part of our body that we abuse the most, we treat with so little respect. This is not a treatise to feet, but maybe it should be.

I tried on the 12s, which fit like a glove out of the box. I attempted to get over myself on the shoe size prejudice. A size meant nothing if they fit well and were comfortable and this was true of the new pair. My right foot, now an 11.5w thanks to the surgeries felt great. The left foot? 10.5b felt a little loose. I can make this work, I thought. I added on a pair of secret lady socks to keep my feet in place (leather!) and went about my merry little way.

Except yes, my feet do change. By the time I was leaving work nine hours later, my right foot had ballooned (as it tends to do after a day where I’m on my feet a lot) and was snug in its shoe. The left shoe, however, flapped off my foot like an evil clown smiling to children as I walked.

I angrily walked to my car, feeling as if my frustration of my life was based solely on this pair of ill-fitting shoes. Why couldn’t I own a nice pair of shoes that fit?  How was the first pair I purchased a perfect fit but its brethren were horrible matches? Why was everything so complicated? Why were people such assholes? Why can’t we have nice things?

Why am I so angry over a pair of shoes?


This Day in Lisa-Universe:

Collectioun of Cunnynge Curioustes: February 2, 2013

Johann Georg Hainz's Cabinet of Curiosities, circa 1666. Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
Johann Georg Hainz’s Cabinet of Curiosities, circa 1666. Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

During the Renaissance, cabinet of curiosities came into fashion as a collection of objects that would often defy classification. As a precursor to the modern museum, the cabinet referred to room(s), not actual furniture, of things that piqued the owners interest and would be collected and displayed in an aesthetically pleasing manner. Collectioun of Cunnynge Curioustes is my 21st century interpretation of that idea.

Dear Internet,

This past week, I had surgery to fix a permanent “squirrelly suture” that was a result from my surgery last summer. Since Tuesday, I’ve been spending most of my days in a lovely drugged haze, in which I have just enough attention to watch a lot of vaguely bad TV in between my gentle snores. The recovery is, fingers crossed, planned to not be as exacting as last summers. I go back to the ortho docs on February 18th for follow up, with hopes to go back to work on February 19th. I’m zero weight baring, so the knee scooter is back. But I spend my days in bed, foot elevated, zoning in and out depending on when I’ve taken the drugs. Shortly after I came home from the surgery, Kristin and I had to write up a proposal for conference submission and it was the hardest thing I could ever do, because  I could not concentrate long enough to cobble two sentences together. Somehow we managed to get the proposal together, but the sheer amount of will it took to write that proposal told me I was not cognizant enough to do anything serious this week. Give me a few days, and I’ll have more of a proper update for you.

I plowed through the entire series in one day. Quick, short, and dripping in sci-fi cultural references, it’s great fun!

Red Dwarf
Beloved cult classic, I started on season one this week and mixed it up with Hyperdrive.

Another show I missed when it first aired, so playing catch up via Amazon Instant Video.

Also watching: Spartacus, The Americans, Archer, and Project Runway.




Need vs Want

Dear Internet,

When I came home from work today, I found myself bemused in my driveway when I realized I had not thought of or worked on my NaNoWriMo story at all today. Now that I’m getting back to working five days a week instead of three, I’m still working on a schedule to make everything fit. I’ve also taken on a part-time gig for a committee work I’m involved with at MPOW, which I have to also get cracking on as well this weekend.


Our plans for the evening was to head to a concert, which we ended up bailing on as TheHusband wasn’t feeling well and I was feeling tired. My body seems more delicate then I remember it ever being, which seems exacerbated by the complications of my recovery from my arthritis surgery in June. If you’re not following me on across the usual haunts, the tl;dr version is this:

June 28th, I had arthritis surgery on my right ankle to remove nearly 20 years of bone chip/spurs from my original accident in 1995. I was planning on being down for the count for a few weeks, but I was bed bound for nearly 2.5 months and out of work for nearly three months. The number of times I left the house, nay went downstairs, during July and August can be counted on one hand, with some left over. My recovery has been so slow1 they have installed a wound vac, which I wear 24/7 and I have to charge up nightly.

While I was eating my dinner tonight of rather bland canned soup, I was flipping through several back issues of The Writer and Writer’s Digest. As I read quips, advice, and interviews, the one thing that kept popping up in my brain was the idea of need vs want in genre writing. I want to write thought provoking but not necessarily heavy stories while I need to write the dark and spooky stuff to work out all of my monsters. I mused that when constructing characters, I try so desperately to keep bits of me out of them, the darker bits, for reasons only known to my subconscious self. My heart tells me I’m not ready to go down that road right now, that writing the fluffier pieces will help get me off the ground. The fluffier pieces may be good, but the darker pieces is what will create my mythos.

I’m keeping those monsters at bay, until the time when I can properly pull them out slowly, one by one, into the daylight to acclimate them to this outer world. Then perhaps they won’t seem so scary.


1. The first question I hear is, “Are you diabetic?” so I’ll just cut you off at the chase and tell you that no, I’m not diabetic. Yes, I do get checked on a regular basis. No, I do not have poor circulation. No, I am not a smoker and have not been one for a very long time. No, they do not know why it is taking me so long to heal. Yes, I’m getting checked by the doctors on a bi-monthly basis.