All the Pretty Shoes

Reassuring hands

Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.—1 THESSALONIANS 5:11 (NIV)

“I’ll never get to wear pretty shoes again,” Mom lamented to me as I helped her out of her big, clunky orthopedic shoes and the brace she had to wear. Parkinson’s had twisted and curled her foot awkwardly. Mom had always loved shoes, sometimes buying several colors of ones she really liked.

It’s tough to watch someone you love struggling to adjust to new and growing limitations. I reached out to stroke Mom’s cheek. “You’re so pretty,” I told her, trying not to cry. And it was true—her skin was still smooth and soft from years of faithful moisturizing. I held her shaking hands. Though they were as crippled as her feet, they were still lovely, but her long nails were missing their usual bright polish.

“I’ll be right back!” I said. From Mom’s large collection of colors, I grabbed a bottle of bright red nail polish. I plopped down on the floor in front of her. I unfolded one finger at a time and painted each nail. I also managed to get polish on her cuticles and the sides of her fingers.

“Couldn’t have done it better myself,” Mom said with a wink and a smile.

The truth was Mom would never be able to wear her pretty shoes again. But she still made sure she had even those clunky orthopedic shoes in both black and white. Oh, and bright red nails!

Today's Prayer:

Lord, Creator of all that is beautiful, thank you for helping me see and nurture the beauty in others.

Adapted from Strength & Grace: Daily Devotions for Caregivers, a new publication from Guideposts