For the first time in my life, I’m thankful that I’ve never had a particular affinity for my feet. In fact, I’ve always thought them sort of large. They’re size 9s, unless you’d trust the trained shoe specialists at the local running store, who last week had the nerve to tell me I’m a 10. A 10! A full size larger than every other shoe in my closet!  As if I didn’t already have a complex about the length of my toes.

See, if I had been holding on to any sort of vanity for my feet, I’d be highly disappointed right now. You see, there are blisters. Blisters that showed up at the party months ago and are still crashing on my couch. And they’re starting to bring their friends over.

There are bruises—yes, full out bruises!—on my toenails. Perhaps from wearing running shoes that are a size too small.

Thank goodness I never loved my feet before I started marathon training. Because if I had loved them before the blisters and bruises of training, I might not love them as much as I do now, when they’re swollen and scraped and fresh off of carrying me through a 14 mile run.