Recently I watched one of my friends put on his laced shoes merely by forcing his foot past the laces and into the shoe. It was fast and efficient. True, he did have to raise his heel up and down a few times to get the now bent back into place. But it was so much better than bending down to untie them, put them on and retie them. I do not do what he did. That is until I watched him and now I do it for most of my shoes. The backs of my dress shoes are just too hard to accomplish the deed.
The reason I had never done it goes back 65 years. My mother forbade me. She said it ruined my shoes. And so I had been obeying her ever since. But wait. I am an adult – an old one and I buy my own shoes. If I want to break down the backs isn’t that my prerogative? Being that my mom passed away a few years ago she will never know that I am now doing it.
So how many other things am I doing merely because my mother taught me so? And now that I am a big person can I not reevaluate the whys and the merits of certain behaviors and beliefs? If there is not a moral principle involved and it will not harm anyone, may I change?
I am most grateful for what my mom and dad taught me. Their ideas have served me well. But this is not 1940 and I am paying my own bills and do have an obligation to understand why I do or do not do certain things. As Paul wrote, “When I was a child I thought as a child, but now that I am a man …” I Cor. 13.
Written by Roger Bothwell on June 23, 2014
Spring of Life, PO Box 124, St. Helena, CA 94574