It was Nurse McGowan in her white leather shoes who was the first to say: “A shoemaker’s daughter without shoes,” following my breast exam during period 2 in her basement office at Wildwood Catholic High.
During the exam, she informed me that my breast tissue was all the way into my arm pits. I thought about apologizing, but instead remained silently chastised.
When Nurse McGowan checked my eyes, she found me needing glasses; and when she checked my lungs, she discovered a touch of bronchitis.
“A shoemaker’s daughter’s without shoes!” she scolded, scribbling notes onto my chart from her circular silver swivel stool.
I assumed Nurse McGowan’s use of the shoe analogy had something to do with the fact that my father was a physician. Over the years, I had discovered that people took pleasure in finding ways that our health had been neglected.
It is the same pleasure that we all find in discovering a contractor’s home unfinished or a teacher’s child unruly or a writer’s work misspeled.
Though it once perplexed me, Nurse McGowan’s comment has come full circle, as I find that despite the fact that I am a life coach, my own life has grown unwieldy.
Despite the fact that I carefully tend the goals of my clients, I’ve allowed the garden of my own desires to become overgrown with half-met reaches and focus-less passions.
Ironically, I hear myself thinking… “I need a life coach.”
And so I schedule an appointment for myself–with myself–several in fact–spanning an entire week. This is how long it takes to weed the garden of my life so that I can remember what I was trying to grow in the first place.
Instead of frantically planting more seeds to satisfy my angst, I pause to create more space around each of the plants that have already taken root. This renewed perspective, allows me to determine which flowers need pruning and which I want to fertilize.
With the help of a life coach, I create containers around each of these desires so that I can frame the actions vital to MY growth.
“A shoemaker’s daughter without shoes,” indeed. But no longer. I have reached down and tended to ME.