Do Your Shoes Fit You?

no shoes squeeze your feet - nor your mind

There is a song by the Brazilian Rockstar Raúl Seixas called ‘Sapato 36’. He sings about wearing shoe size 37, but his father keeps giving him shoes, size 36. ‘It hurts, but the next day I squeeze my feet again.’

We squeeze our feet every day. And we cry that our fathers, mothers, employers, spouses and others give us shoes that don’t fit. They give us shoes they think are the best for us, they say they have walked in them and know they’re good (but they didn’t walk in them with OUR feet), they say these shoes are the latest fashion or they look so nice on us.

But it is *us* who put them on, despite the pain. It is us who squeeze our feet every day over and over again. We say we have to wear these shoes, because they were given to us.

Take them off! I’m challenging you now, as you read this, take your shoes off! Continue reading barefoot.

Are they off? Took the socks off, too? Bare feet?

Okay, let’s continue.


What happens when we walk in shoes that don’t fit? It hurts. It creates blisters. Eventually, our feet become distorted. There is absolutely no benefit. Only pain and distortion. Unfortunately, not only have we grown to accept small shoes from other people, we even design our own shoes two sizes too small. And suffer.

Trying to squeeze our lives and minds into something that doesn’t fit us, does the same. It creates pain and distorts us.

For some time I felt a burden on everything I did: come July 2019, I’ll have no paycheck anymore, no health insurance, no home, no school for my kids. I have to find something that will catch me before that deadline.

My coach helped me initially by telling me to forget about that deadline for the rest of the year and focus on what I could do now. I did that and it helped. But the deadline is still there. Looming. Worse, I felt that I couldn’t find a way to communication with my husband about where to go come June 30. He loves his Amazon and no reasonable argument in the world as to why this is not a good choice for us as a family will change his feelings about home. As long as I was applying for jobs, we were spared a lot of discussion, because where I’d find a job is where we’d go.

Getting tighter

I will not apply for jobs. So, where do we go? I have very little savings. The little savings we have, I need to built up on to buy land eventually. The pressure is high. The girls’ school year ends in June. In Brazil, holidays are over in August, in Portugal in late August or September. We must find a place before, get settled and put them back to school. The shoes are getting tighter and tighter.

Why am I taking them?

I’ve gone back to my roots. Back to my guts. I live here and now. Here and now I want my mind to be at ease. So, I have taken another decision.

There is no deadline.

Come July, we’ll go visit my in-laws’ home. That’s where my husband wants to go first. To see his family, hunt in the forest, work hard, take some açaí and replenish his full being again. Last born hasn’t met her grandparents yet, so that will be something great, too. After a few weeks, we’ll travel south to Minas Gerais and check out life there. Spend a few weeks wwoofing or any other form we find to live with little and see what this place is like, how we like the people, how easy it is to get land and what schools are available.

Then we go to Portugal and do the same thing there. Get a feeling for the place.

So what?

So, my children won’t go to school. Boohoo. Will they not learn? When they see their parents following their hearts, will they learn nothing? About how different places are and how beautiful each one? Will they not learn that peace of mind is what really matters?

How easily will they integrate into a new school when we rush and run, hectic, stressed out and unsure whether this is even what and where we want to be?

How easily will they integrate into a new school when they have had the time to get settled, to feel the new place, to make friends with other children and the idea of living there for a while? Even if they missed a few months of school.

We won’t have money. The savings I have are not enough to buy land. They are enough, though, to buy us freedom for two or three months. So that we can take a decision and feel good about it. I want to invest in our peace of mind. In the meantime, all we need is food and water and ourselves. That one I can guarantee.

I proposed the idea to my husband. He liked it. Then he shared his ideas. And a whole new world opened up. Now we have two businesses. We built up our place in the Amazon to offer a true authentic Amazon experience to those who want to go beyond the tourist tracks. We do what we have to do when the time comes.

In the meantime, we live.

We both took off our shoes. Our shoes don’t squeeze anymore. Maybe we feel the prick of sharp pebbles or some cold floor. We may even step in poo. But we won’t have blisters and our feet will not distort. All it needed was our minds to open.

P.S. I read Raúl Seixas’ father was very upset when his son published this song. He didn’t like it one bit. You’ll find that some people will not like it when you throw away your shoes. That’s ok. And it shouldn’t keep you from finding your own.



Raúl Seixas – Sapato 36

Eu calço é 37, meu pai me dá 36.

Dói, mas no dia seguinte, eu aperto meu pé outra vez.

Eu aperto meu pé outra vez.

Pai, eu já estou crescidinho

Pague para ver que eu aposto

Vou escolher meu sapato

E andar do jeito que gosto!

Por que cargas d’águas você acha que

Tem o direito

De afogar tudo aquilo que eu

Sinto no meu peito?

Você só vai ter o respeito que quer
Na realidade
No dia em que você souber respeitar
A minha vontade

Meu pai, meu pai!

Pai, já estou indo me embora

Quero partir sem brigar

Já escolhi meu sapato

Que nunca mais vai me apertar

Que nunca mais vai me apartar!

Por que cargas d´águas ….

I wear size 37, but my father gives me 36.

It hurts, but the next day I squeeze my foot again.


I squeeze my fo

Dad, I’m already a big boy

You can bet your money on that

I’ll choose my shoe

And walk the way I want!

What in the world makes you think

You have the right

To blow out every fire that

I feel burning in my chest?

You’ll only have the respect you demand

In reality

The day that you learn to respect

My will

My father, my father!

Dad, I’m already leaving

I want to part without a fight

I’ve already chosen my shoe

That will never again restrain me

That will never again restrain me!

What in the world…


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