View from the chair

To the lady with the sensible shoes…

To the lady with the sensible shoes…

Well there I was. In the loo….the bathroom…the potty. Doing what one does in there. As always I look at the feet of those in the stalls next to me. Hey…I am a mom and this is one of the rare times I was in a store kid free and able to sit! What can I say…I observe. Anywhooo…I noticed two very different pairs of feet beside me. They were mothers as I heard them talking to their littles ones outside the stall.

One woman was wearing sensible shoes. Black. Lace-up loafer things that I imagined came from a sensible shoe store. One like Sears or JC Penny’s. Black. A solid choice. Goes with just about anything. But the other woman had on high heeled boots. Brown. You know the kind. Goes up to her knee or past. Skinny heel. Makes the click-clack when she walks. Bought at someplace with a boutique in the name.

There I was in my flip-flops. Doing what I needed to do. As I ran into both women washing their hands they looked just like I had imagined. The sensible shoe mom had her hair pulled back into a smart-looking ponytail. No makeup that I could see. A little on the older side. A classic, natural beauty that was not overstated. The sensible shoe mom had her big bag of tricks, and I can imagine in her bag was her wallet, baby wipes, water bottles (stainless steel kind), shopping list, organic chapstick, recycle bags, coupons by order of items in the grocery aisle. As well as a ziplock bag with bandages and baby Tylenol. I saw this mom talking to 2 smaller versions of herself except they were wearing sneakers.

On the other side was the boot lady. Long hair, unnaturally straight. Blonde. Makeup to perfection. Slightly tan…even though summer came to an end several months ago. A small purse that I imagined fit her credit/debit card and her sparkly phone which her daughter…a mini version of herself…was texting on. I think the daughter must have been 8. Daughter had same hair except for a natural wave. Normal looking blonde. The girl had a similar type of boots. Not as high but certainly nothing you would want to run around on the playground with. As both moms were finishing up the boot mom walked out first. Naturally, why wouldn’t she? Her baggage was far lighter.

I saw the sensible shoe mom do something that startled me. She was ushering her 2 out as well, but she stopped and looked at herself in the mirror. I saw her try to fluff her ponytail. With an audible sigh, as if to say she was less than the boot woman, she shook her head and walked out. I wanted to stop her and give her a hug and say something to let her know she was perfect just the way she was. She should know that her value was not in the amount of makeup she wore or how small her purse was or how high her shoes were.

Why are we comparing ourselves? Why are we, as women, as mothers always trying to keep up? As I said I was wearing flip-flops. It is my thing. I wear them all year long…YES….even in the snow. I have pictures of doing recess duty with my flip flops in the snow. There are some days I am dressed like I just walked out of an LL Bean catalog and other days I could be mistaken for Sasquatch.

So my dear fellow mom with the sensible shoes….don’t compare yourself. Perhaps the boot mom was having a stellar hair day decided to take herself out or perhaps every day she looks like this? Perhaps she has such an easy life she can spend the time needed to look that great. Or even perhaps….just perhaps….the makeup is covering up something else. A marriage where she feels like she has to look like perfection? A childhood spent being put down due to lack of beauty or value? Who knows? Or perhaps her life is just perfect and she was born with good looks and married well.

Regardless it does not make you any less than wonderful! You have two beautiful daughters that will be in this world where even at a young age, they will be told they need to be different, look different, act differently. Sensible shoe mom….be comfortable in your own skin. Be who you were created to be. A role model to your daughters for when the world starts inundating them with unrealistic ideals of what beauty is. Be you. Makeup. No makeup. Brown shoes. Boots. Flip flops. Big bag. Small purse. It does not matter. You are beautiful as YOU!


  1. Man, I’ve had those days! It’s worse when you get dressed up and you still can’t look good! AHHHHH

  2. I want to say a huge thank you for writing this as it has helped me tonight where I am feeling low an under-appreciated with a birthday tomorrow and a bloke who treats it as an after-thought or an intrusion on his life. It was nice to be reminded that I have my own individual worth and also that I need to ensure my daughter feels that way too. Thank you! #TwinklyTuesday

  3. beachchairtracy

    Thank you for being honest with your response! We as women have so much to carry the last thing we need to do is compare ourselves. I am glad this put a little wind in your sails! By the way….Happy Birthday!!!

  4. Love this! I spend so much of my ‘getting ready’ time judging myself, which I know I shouldn’t do, but I can’t help myself! It’s so important to remember that we are enough and are amazing just as we are πŸ™‚

    1. beachchairtracy

      That is right!!! Just as we are! Remember our daughters are looking at us!

  5. It IS horrible the way we put ourselves down. I’m high heeled boots person but I’m never really happy with how I look and especially now I’m getting OLD. Saying that though, even though I don;t like that I’m getting old, I’m actually less bothered what other people think now than i’ve ever been so that’s a good thing I guess. A great post highlighting the pressure us mums put on ourselves x #kcacols

  6. Daddy wins!? Π’he twins declared.

  7. Rosie

    When I was younger I wore non-sensible shoes, then I had a fall walking on them and fractured my foot. Bye-bye to all those fancy schmancy shoes. I got used to sensible shoes, and had no idea how much wearing those heels had screwed me up – it impacts your posture, knees, permanently shortened calf muscles, you name it. I wore the heels mostly b/c I am so short, and would not even venture a few steps to get the mail without them. I still have all of them! and my shoe size is bigger, so I call them closet decor! I walk most places, and sometimes I see ladies wearing non-sensible shoes walking the half mile to town if there is an event going on at the center. My feet hurt for them!! I wish I had gotten sensible when younger, and I have gotten used to being 4″ inches shorter to everyone.

  8. I’m sometimes boot mum (though not much of a heel lol) and sometimes sensible shoe mum, it really depends on the day and how much time I have. We give ourselves such a hard time over how we look, I wish I for one had a little more confidence in myself. Thanks so much for linking up at #KCACOLS. Hope you come back next time.

  9. I’m always sensible shoes, and I think I am always okay with that! It’s a mindset… Happy 2018! <3 #kcacols xoxo

    1. beachchairtracy

      Yes, it is! Thanks for stopping by!

  10. I’m not one for telling others what they should or shouldn’t wear. I know people who love their heals. However, I do think we are long past discussing the need for comfortable, professional women’s shoes that are acceptable for the work place environment. I cannot believe men would ever accept a professional work attire that required them to balance on an uneven surface, caused feet, back, leg, and neck pain all in the name of professional attire. I do believe women should be able to be professional in foot wear that provides appropriate feet support without being criticized for it.

  11. Mother of 3

    Aw, what a wonderful reminder! (i wear flip flops pretty much year round too!).

  12. I pray through childhood issues with college students all the time and agree that there is usually a reason or motivation from our youth for how we put ourselves together or what we have to keep up in appearances. Thank goodness the Lord can set us free from some of the lies that tie us to our appearance/performance! Good encouragement in this to love others and be accepting, no matter what kind of mom they are! πŸ™‚

  13. Oh I do love this! Totally. I cannot say anymore. Brilliant. xx

  14. I wore sensible shoes when I was working as a child minder, so that I was able to run after them if necessary, when I went on a night out and dressed up I would wear heels and struggled to walk in them#trafficjsmweekend@_karendennis

  15. Aw I totally love this considering I am always the one in sensible shoes / sneakers and always look worse for wear when out with the kids! Thanks for sharing πŸ˜€


  16. I love a high heel but now that I have 4 kids they are just for looking at and flip flops win out. Thanks for joining the #DreamTeam this week

    1. beachchairtracy

      Flip flops ALL THE WAY!!!

  17. That’s beautiful! And you’re so right! There are days when I might compare myself to other moms. I look really young and having a teenager makes me look younger somehow (I don’t entirely believe this but it has been said to me) so whenever I go to a high school function I try not to look like the kids. I have been mistaken for a student several times, so I get dressed up to try to look my age so I don’t go there and get “the looks” and the attitude that most adults give to teenagers lol. Other than that though, I don’t pay much attention to what other people see. I’m me. But I love that you wrote this because we moms need to hear that every now and then. #DreamTeam

    1. beachchairtracy

      Absolutely. As long as we can be comfortable in our own skin that is all that matters!

  18. Yes to this. I have to admit, when I go out, I am boot mum. I do make the time for myself. I have written about it. There is a flip side to this story though, as I discussed in my blog post. Sometimes we get looked at like we shouldn’t be making an effort. That in doing so we are not giving the time to our children. When this simply isn’t the case. We should be free to dress in any way that makes us happy and comfortable with ourselves and not be in fear of being compared to or scrutinised. I don’t judge anyone, and nobody else should. Thanks so much for sharing with #TriumphantTales!

  19. Zvonimir

    Nice and very truthful story and yes flip flops all the way πŸ™‚

  20. Marko

    Totally agree , you must be comfortable

  21. Love this post. Yep, I am the one in sensible shoes – my trusty croc sandals. I wear those all year round because they are super comfy in our tropical weather and I don’t give a damn if they don’t match what I am wearing.

    1. beachchairtracy

      You go be you! We need to stop judging ourselves and others! Keep those toes comfy!

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