Leaving a phase
It hurts here
I can’t stay here
I guess I’m hiding here
I guess it’s comfortable here
Or I wouldn’t resist leaving
Attached to the rat race
And the big risks
And the loneliness
And the chasm-like difference between what I want
And what I have
It’s go-time now
I set my own timer
And it’s going off
I’m done.

An Almost Cry for Help

So I’ve received word back from the car insurance company that not only are they refusing to pay my medical bills, but that they are denying I was injured in the first place. I can’t fathom why victims of car accidents are made to further suffer through this system we have created. It is asinine. I would be better off having my own savings account so that I get to decide whether I am healed or not, and how long to pursue treatment.

So I am left in a rather vulnerable position of having to take an insurance company to court, having already wasted 2 months of my time and money that I don’t have healing myself from an accident that was in no way my fault.

This on top of the fact that I am at a loss for how to get my next project off the ground and survive in the meantime. The room is filling up with water and I see no exit.

Sometimes pressure helps us focus and make breakthroughs. I hope I can McGyver my way out of this one. I also hope my community will step up to support me. I have such a heart for helping people heal and get healthy, and no means to support myself while doing that yet. I’ve never been good at reaching out because my young life was about proving my self-sufficiency. So I’m at a loss for what to do now. I need help to help others, and I’ve never felt so close to that help yet so utterly destitute.

Heart Puddles

Heart Puddles
A day for riding on unicorns
A feeling of
Yes We Can
My tendencies
Strong Impulses
Making waves
Let them ripple
Ideas come
At inconvenient times
Wait for the right wave
To make my move
Turn around and paddle
Then Dance

Warning: Feet Haters – Graphic Images

I thought as a followup I should post the bottom-sides of the feet at the 12-week point of barefoot living in Berkeley/San Francisco, CA! People seem to be curious what the bottoms of my feet look like after walking barefoot everywhere. Are they all thick and nasty and calloused? No…not so much.

Feet Crossed, No Weight on Them

These are my bare feet after a shower. I have not done ANY maintenance on them in the past 1.5-2 months probably. I could easily file off the small amount of permagrime (and will after posting this!) – it’s about what you’d have walking around your house barefoot I suppose. I don’t have “callouses” built-up. That would be counterproductive to the feet’s “job” of sensing the ground and helping you make adjustments.

Bottoms of Feet

My arches, or still lack thereof…



You can see the amount of new skin my toe has had to grow as my pinky toe uncurled, it’s a bit darker. It’s this type of shit that makes me feel like an old school Chinese princess. Frickin’ foot emancipation society. My toes love me more now and that’s all that matters :-) <3

New Toe Skin

12 Weeks No Shoes

Today is a big milestone for me in my barefoot experiment – 12 weeks/3 months sans shoes!

I was very pleased at how well my feet recovered after having to wear shoes all day for one day this week. My thin skin healed up well and I was able to walk without the extra sensitivity today. Back to normal! The feet heal so fast!

The changes in my feet are subtle to detect in pictures.

Here is Week 1, Compared to Week 12, topsides:

Week 1

Today, Week 12

I feel that my 4th and 5th toes have more knuckle functionality, and that they have untwisted slightly to face more downward instead of inward.  They operate a bit more independently. They are also slightly longer, as the skin underneath has broken and stretched the toes to nearly full length. There may be an additional 2-3mm more of stretching to take place, ouch! The spacing is also a bit more even, the weight is being distributed more evenly.

I feel the biggest difference is probably in the strength of my hamstrings and the shape of my calves, neither of which I bothered to collect data on along the way! I walk totally differently now. It would be fun to find a video of my walk before and make one after. It is night and day. My legs spend so much more time behind me, and my steps land under me instead of way out in front of me. One of these days I’ll get on a ham/quad machine and test my relative strength. I used to do about 2 times more work in my quads than in my hams. For example, if I was extending 110-120 pounds on quads, I was curling only 50-70 pounds in my hamstrings for the same number of reps and fatiguing just as fast. I probably could get this data from my college workout cards. A new acquaintance remarked at how differently I walk compared to other people, in a complementary way.

So many things have changed, that I sometimes get discouraged that my arches haven’t developed drastically just yet. But they are coming along. This week I finally started to feel some perpetual soreness in the muscles in the arch along my 4th toes. The entire structure of the foot and the way it lands has had to change, in order for me to have a foundation on which to reconstruct my arches. I suppose it is all happening in due time. Now I nearly have the hamstring and calf strength to perform additional strengthening exercises for the arches. The calf muscles really have to support the arch work, I have found, and the calf muscles are still not fully developed, as they are sore every day I walk any distance. I predict it may take another 6 months before I see major, lasting change in my arch shape now.

All in all, still a very satisfying experiment. I have learned so much about my fantastic feet and have come to appreciate them and the muscles that support them so much more.

82 Days Barefoot

Well, today I had to wear shoes most of the day, for the first time. I had worn the skin down too far on the balls and toes of my feet on my 6-mile hike earlier in the week, that further barefoot walking would have damaged my feet.

It was actually quite nice to have the opportunity to work on my arches with the shoes on, as I could put more pressure on the balls of the feet. However, of course my last two toes were quite unhappy, as were the backs of my heels from the shoes rubbing on them.

I found out yesterday I had inspired a new acquaintance (a fellow yogi) to walk barefoot across San Francisco (Dolores to Potrero). He loved it, and noticed he felt more connected (yes, you are!) and noticed he spent more time watching the ground for glass, etc. He also noticed he got lots of disapproving looks from strangers, which I predicted and sympathized with.

There is something meditative about feeling the ground with each step you walk. It is a conscious “being-present” with each step. For me, it has transformed the very way I walk (slower, more use of hamstrings and balls of the feet).

I chose to wear shoes today because I had to walk a few miles. It turned out to be a very good decision as I took the wrong BART stop, which doubled my journey! The arches are tired now, which is great. I need much more arch work, so perhaps I can alternate shoe-wearing days the next couple days to keep the arches going. And it’s probably time for another beach run soon too.

Life is good.

Coming Home

Melting at the sunset
So sure of myself
Getting older only gets better
Not second-guessing so much anymore
Stepping into my body
I finally own it
And almost my heart
Knowing that everyone else
Is already taken
Best to play me to my potential
Absorbed in the other for so long
Looking for ideas and clues to success
Nice to come home to myself
Nice to be accepted and rejected for me

11 Weeks No Shoes

The end of my 11th week no shoes had me walking 6 miles through Golden Gate Park and out Lands End toward China Beach in San Francisco.

I had brought shoes along “just in case”, as it was advertised an 8-mile hike and I didn’t want to burden the group should I find some unforgiving trails. I pulled them out at one point, but didn’t need them after all!

However, my lower calves were achey and locking up after about 4 miles, as I believe my arches are just not strong enough yet to take their fair share of the load.

I am thinking I may have to do calf raises to condition my arches to take more work. Simply walking around the cities isn’t doing it for me anymore.

My feet are becoming more flexible on tops due to my stretching them more often, but after Sunday’s hike the feet are quite sore and stiff again. The soles of the feet have become super-sensitive again too after that hike. I was kind of getting used to my reduced pain levels but now they’re back again after that long walk. Perhaps the cold weather had been blissfully numbing my feet all along and now that spring is here (in California!) it is back to usual? I suppose I’ll know better in a week or so as my feet recover from those rocky trails.


Somehow I felt like I didn’t do anything today.

Even after I got a suntan, retrieved 2 javelins, stretched, spent hours studying biology, checked in with athletes, cleaned my room, did laundry, caught up with friends on Facebook, took the garbage out, did dishes, organized financial data, consulted with a business professional, checked in with my boyfriend, and gave myself a haircut.

I didn’t write.

I should probably find peace with that :-p