Welcome to the current series of Posts from Your Archives… and I will be picking two posts from the blogs of those participating from the first six months of 2020. If you don’t mind me rifling through your archives… just let me know in the comments or you can find out the full scope: Posts from Your Archives – Pot Luck – 2020
This is the second post from freelance journalist and author Mary Smith...and this week a problem that is faced by many of us when we have that ‘Cinderella’ or should that be ‘Ugly Sister’ moment of trying on favourite shoes that no longer fit.
National Bunion Day by Mary Smith
It’s April 25 – it’s National Bunion Day.
National Bunion Day has been established to remove the stigma surrounding bunions, encourage sufferers to contact healthcare professionals and provide practical advice and information to help with the problem.
What is a bunion? It’s a misaligned toe joint which manifests itself as a bony lump at the base of the big toe. It’s an extremely painful condition. Ask Meghan Markle, Victoria Beckham, Naomi Campbell, Jennifer Lopez or Amal Clooney and they’ll tell you how painful it is. Or, ask my sister. She may not be an A-List celebrity but she can tell you how painful it is to have a bunion. She’s had it for a long time and she’s still dithering about whether or not to have it operated on.
Over ten million women in the UK have bunions. Seventy five per cent of women with bunions are embarrassed by their feet. Ninety-seven per cent of women with bunions have bought shoes for a special occasion – and never worn them again.
Media personality Dr Dawn Harper (a bunion sufferer herself) has joined forces with Sole Bliss, makers of stylish shoes for women with bunions, to raise awareness for National Bunion Day 2019. Given her wealth of medical expertise and personal experience of the condition, Dr Harper, who hosts Channel 4’s hit series ‘Embarrassing Bodies’, is the perfect ambassador for the campaign and the brand.
She said: “I’m honoured to be involved with Sole Bliss for a second year. As a sufferer of bunions, I am so pleased to work with a brand whose shoes are not only gorgeous but also provide women the guarantee of comfort. As a GP, I often have people in my clinic who are embarrassed and unsure about how they can manage the condition. This is exactly why I believe National Bunion Day is crucial – so we can inform the public that millions of people have them, they are not something to be ashamed of, and there are solutions.”
Surgery is the only solution to get rid of bunions. It can take a while to recover from surgery.
You’ll usually need to:
- stay off your feet as much as possible for at least 2 weeks
- avoid driving for 6 to 8 weeks
- stay off work for 6 to 12 weeks
- avoid sports for up to 6 months
- Bunions sometimes come back after surgery.
You can understand why my sister is still dithering about surgery!
Some of the other solutions to ease bunion pain:
- hold an ice pack (or a bag of frozen peas wrapped in a tea towel) to the bunion for up to 5 minutes at a time
- try bunion pads (soft pads you put in shoes to stop them rubbing on a bunion) – you can buy these from pharmacies
- take paracetamol or ibuprofen
- try to lose weight if you’re overweight
- wear wide shoes with a low heel and soft sole
Don’t: wear high heels or tight, pointy shoes
Where’s the fun in not having pointy shoes?
Sole Bliss, who introduced National Bunion Day, was launched in 2017 by designer Lisa Kay following five years of research and development. Elegant, yet deep and spacious at the front, they provide stylish shoes for women with bunions. Lisa said: “I hope we can continue to remove previous stigma and let women who currently suffer in silence know that there is a brand new range of on-trend, stylish shoes designed especially for them.”
I never use this blog for promotions (other than my books, and I’m so useless at that – did you even know I wrote books?) but for some reason – maybe my sister’s bunion – this National Bunion Day appeals to me!
© Mary Smith 2020
About Mary Smith
Mary Smith has always loved writing. As a child she wrote stories in homemade books made from wallpaper trimmings – but she never thought people could grow up and become real writers. She spent a year working in a bank, which she hated – all numbers, very few words – ten years with Oxfam in the UK, followed by ten years working in Pakistan and Afghanistan. She wanted others to share her amazing, life-changing experiences so she wrote about them – fiction, non-fiction, poetry and journalism. And she discovered the little girl who wrote stories had become a real writer after all.
Drunk Chickens and Burnt Macaroni: Real Stories of Afghan Women is an account of her time in Afghanistan and her debut novel No More Mulberries is also set in Afghanistan
Books by Mary Smith
A recent review No More Mulberries
Carol McKay Immersive Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 4 June 2020
A really enjoyable story that had my imagination fully immersed in its portrayal of the sensory world of 1990s rural Afghanistan. A tender love story set against a backdrop of cultural conflicts and encroaching war.
Thank you for dropping in today and Mary would love your feedback.. thanks Sally.