A long time ago, there lived a very little girl whose parents loved her very much. Loving her as much as they did, they gave her a special pair of shoes to support and protect her feet and carry her through her life. The shoes they gave her were identical to the ones they wore which supported and protected them so well, they wanted to provide her with the same gift. The shoes were meant to grow with her as she got older.
As the little girl began to grow up, her shoes given to her by her parents kept her safe and supported her, but even before the girl began to realize it, something about the shoes was a little bit off. The little girl would spy other shoes or bits and pieces of shoes other people wore that jumped out at her, and secretly, she longed for those bits and pieces of other shoes, though she was told by her parents those shoes were bad and only bad people wore them. Though she didn’t understand how that could be, she loved her parents very much and trusted more in what they told her than what her own heart did.
As the years tumbled by, the girl became more aware of how her shoes didn’t quite fit right. They rubbed at her feet and felt uncomfortable at times. She looked around her at all the people she knew who wore the same shoes, and noticed they didn’t seem uncomfortable, their shoes which were identical to hers seem to fit fine. She began to become concerned and sought the advice and wisdom of those people, asking them her questions about her shoes that rubbed her feet in a way that left her uncomfortable. Alas, she was told that her shoes fit just fine and that the rubbing was good for her feet and would form her feet to fit her shoes better. She sighed inwardly, confused as to how that could be. She began to think something was wrong with her feet that they did not fill her shoes out right. She tried to put it out of her mind and tried to believe that what she had been told was true. She held on to the hope that one day, her shoes would fit the way they seemed they were supposed to.
But no matter how much she tried to put her uncomfortable shoes out of her mind, her attention kept returning to them like a moth to flame. Something was not quite right. She became frustrated at the answers of those wise people she sought for advice, and as she grew older, she started to take her shoes off some times. It felt good to give her feet room to breathe, though she knew the dangers of walking through her life without shoes of any kind. Soon, she was keeping her shoes off almost all the time. She tucked them away in a corner of her closet. Without her shoes, she danced and ran and played, and though she missed the support her shoes offered her, she kept right on dancing, running, and playing.
Soon, though, the girl’s feet began to ache from the lack of any support at all. She got cuts on her feet as she wandered paths her shoes would never take her. After a while, she realized that she was in pretty bad shape. A bit lost and more confused than ever, she knew she needed shoes. She thought about her shoes tucked away in her closet – they were the only shoes she had ever known. Determined to somehow make those shoes fit, she dragged them out of the closet and put them on her feet. At first, it felt comforting to be in her old shoes. They were familiar, she knew them. She knew the path they would take her on. But before long, she began to realize that they fit even worse than they had before. In a different land, now, she again sought the wisdom of others. She found a person whose shoes looked similar to hers but had a few differences. This person took one look at her shoes and said, of course they don’t fit you! Then, she helped the girl make some adjustments to her shoes by adding some new material and helping the girl learn to walk in a slightly different way, a walk that had a bounce to its step. The girl began to feel better, her shoes were more comfortable than they had possibly ever been. But something was still a little off. These newly redecorated shoes still had the same sole as the others and the girl began to notice that it was the sole that provided the support for the shoe and her feet.
Time continued to roll by, but the experience of having slightly different shoes gave her the courage to begin looking at other shoes – shoes that were completely different from the ones her parents who loved her so much had given her. It was a frightening undertaking at first, considering shoes completely different than those from her parents. What would they say when they saw them on her feet? But the girl persevered because she was now more convinced than ever that her original shoes were not for her. And in her persevering, she remembered those flashes of the beautiful shoes she had seen when she was little – the ones her parents had told her were bad. She examined these shoes in earnest and saw that, though they were very different from her parents’ shoes, they were not bad. She felt drawn to them. Soon, the girl’s courage grew even more, and she decided she would create her own shoes. She found parts from a variety of different shoes that called her attention, and she used the support and sole from the shoes her parents thought were bad and found that they fit perfectly to her feet. Slowly, she began sewing and crafting shoes of her very own with her very own hands and her very own spirit, specially designed for her feet to support her, carry her, dance her, run her, and play her through her life, all the while leading her exactly where she was meant to go so she could become exactly who it was she was meant to be.
As time went on, she noticed these shoes magically adapted as she continued to grow the way she was told her old shoes would but hadn’t. She added pieces, took pieces off, but each time she noticed that her shoes reflected who she was, who she was becoming, and though the path she walked with them was not an easy one, she took comfort in the fact that she was going where she was meant to go and she had all the support she would ever need, crafted from her very own hands and her very own spirit.