May 17th, 2009, I laced up a pair of white Converse Chuck Taylors to walk down the aisle to be married.
Five months later, I would be lacing these same Chucks, preparing to move out of my then husband's and my apartment as we entered into a separation that would lead to a divorce a few years later.
For years, I couldn't bring myself to put them back on, but I couldn't get rid of them either. They felt like a tangible reminder of what was, love and hope and commitment and the dissolving of it all. I don't have a single picture from my wedding day, these chucks were all I had to remember that it even happened, that it wasn't some painfully sweet and abrupt dream.
They remained, pristine and white and still tied, in my shoe cubby by my front door.
That is until last year. I had just turned 30. It was spring. I couldn't find a single pair of shoes that went with my look that particular day. Except for those damn Chucks. I was in a hurry. But I still vacillated. To wear or not to wear. Finally, after way too much thought, I grabbed them, slid my bare feet into them and headed out the door.
Now, 31 years old, I pretty much wear my Chucks every day. I love them. And it shows. They have been worn through rain, mud, daily dirt, a few trips down south and back home, one clumsy plate of spaghetti, various tumbles in the washing machine, and they are still going strong. Now, somewhere between some shade of off white and a pale gray, they go with me daily, from runs to Starbucks to Ikea trips with the guy of my dreams to thrift store visits to train rides to see my family.
Yeah, I got married in them, but I also got divorced in them. I moved in them, found a new home in them, and established a new life in them, a life I am very proud of. And I am very proud of the Chucks that led me through it all, and despite ups and downs, have reminded me that if I just kept my feet moving, I could get through anything, one comfy stride at a time.