I have two friends that have always been loyal to me; through the good times, and the bad, through thick and thin.
These two are not your typical friends. They’re twins, and they go pretty much everywhere with me.
My friends are a pair of shoes. To be more specific, a pair of black and white Vans, Old-Skools.
These shoes have been a lot of places with me, and they have seen a lot of different periods and phases in my life.
They are not in the best condition. They are dirty, torn, and broken in. Some would look at these shoes and see them as trashy and gross. But when I look at the beating they’ve taken, I think of all the places they have taken me.
They have taken me on first dates, to college classes, adventures, to meet my girlfriend’s parents, on walks, to hot springs, Magic: The Gathering tournaments, planes, cars, to interviews for Scroll articles, and countless other places.
I was wearing them when I went on my first date with my girlfriend, which is one of the happiest memories I currently have. They carried me up to her apartment where we played games and talked for the entire evening.
I put them on when I needed to go to a therapy appointment during a depressive episode.
I also wore those shoes when I spent time in a park with friends on a lazy Sunday afternoon. We played games and talked in the warm fall sun.
All this to say that they are so much more to me than just clothing. They are a constant in my life. When I strap into them in the morning, I feel ready to take on the day.
As I reflect on my earlier life, I never thought I would be in the position I am in today. I am happy, I enjoy my studies, I have good friends and I am nearing marriage with an amazing woman. I feel like I am exactly where I want to be.
I won’t contribute all of my success to my shoes, but they definitely helped me get to where I am and they have been there for me every step of the way.