Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Yellow Boots

In my house lives a pair of magical yellow boots.

That's what the boy who wears them believes, anyway.

They were on sale and blue was sold out so the yellow boots seemed an easy choice. Now I see that they chose me so that they could make it home to my boy.

I bought the boots a size too big when he was half way to three. I noticed right away how perfect they were because I could spot him wherever he went. A flash of yellow gave me comfort that I knew right where he was. Immediately they set him apart. Other parents complimented me. "How smart to pick yellow. He can't hide from you!"

These boots were with him the year he turned three. He was a super hero in pajamas and a cape. The yellow boots were a constant companion, the only thing we didn't lose.

At four the boots were with him in his dress up clothes. He was a firefighter, Iron Man, a worker guy, and a chef.  They were with him as he learned to peddle his bike chanting "Just keep pedawing, just keep pedawing."

With the boots on his feet puddles turned to oceans that he could cross without harm. Mountains  became hills (or is it the other way?), and all trees became climbable with the yellow boots on his feet. He had super human speed thanks to those yellow boots.

"Close your eyes, mama!" he commands, so I do. When I open them he has crossed the yard faster than normal eyes can track. "Am I the fastest?"

Yes, my boy you are.

Gravity has no hold on his boots. He can touch the tallest trees, the clouds, and even the moon with his yellow boots on his feet.

The boots cause heads to turn wherever we go. His stride shows a confidence only a 5 year old who has not been knocked around by the world can carry. "Nice boots," they say.  "Thanks," he replies in a deepened voice. If he had on a cowboy hat I know he would tip it in their direction.

The boots are tattered and torn, muddy and worn. They are losing their treads. Long ago the liner was discarded. Sometimes my little boy goes days without asking for them. They no longer have to be at his bedside, or on his feet, while he sleeps. I know that his need for them his dwindling.

I sometimes think that I love these boots even more than he does. They are like the fishes and loaves, continuing to give even when they logically should not. Every time he puts them on I think, "Today will be the day that they don't fit."

As we walk around the block I ask how they feel.

"Great!" he shouts as he runs ahead, always ahead  and always faster than I am. Skipping and jumping, spontaneously stopping to examine the world.

He believes they will fit, and so they do.

I know that one day the boots won't fit, that they will be too small. I know that one day my boy won't care if they fit, that he will no longer want them.

I know the yellow boots hold no magic. They are ordinary yellow boots that have been transformed into extraordinary yellow boots for a time.

The little boy runs ahead of me, turns his brown eyes to look over his shoulder and coax, "Come on, mama!"

I see instantly where the magic lies, and it is not in those boots. 


  1. Love these boots, they would always bring smiles to my face. Especially in the summer time when it was SO hot! He always wore them with a smile.

  2. what a precious way to tell the story of the precious boy and his boots. we miss them.

  3. LONG LIVE THE YELLOW BOOTS! Great blog and thanks for sharing your joy.