Why High Heels & Flip-Flops?

I wait for it every year without fail, usually right around the beginning of October – the snarky Washington Post Express column, someone's random blog missive, or a scathing reader comment, each poking fun at those of us who dare to continue wearing our flip-flops into the fall season. And I laugh, because I am without a doubt one of those people.

Born and raised in Southern California, I practically lived in flip-flops and flats until I moved to DC after graduating from college 12 years ago with a degree in journalism and an obsession with public affairs. But from the very first day I set foot in the halls of Congress, it was easy to see that this place ran on high heels. And not the small kitten-style heels I was accustomed to when I did dare to take the plunge, but sky-high pumps to complement the polished pencil skirts and posh power suits that seemed so new to me, a blue collar girl, the first in my family to earn a college degree.

Since what was classy in California clearly wouldn't fly in a place like this, I begrudgingly perfected a penchant for heels over my next five years as a congressional aide by wearing them when it was necessary, learning to stand for long periods throughout hearings and to stride confidently down the marble hallways without teetering. I took each blister as a sign that I was fitting in, a part of the East Coast club, and viewed my sore toes as an indication of my ultimate success in this exhilarating new world.

Still, no matter what, my favorite part of the day was when I would return to my office and plunge my tired feet into trusty flip-flops, which were always waiting unfailingly beneath my desk to sooth me, comfort me and remind me of the place I will always consider home.

A lot has changed throughout the years I’ve spent in DC. I met and married Stephen, the most amazing man I’ve ever known, who is also a native Californian. I’ve traveled, written, learned and discovered a passion for weddings by creating my first blog, Bicoastal Bride.

Alex Neumann Photography
Having achieved my goals on the Hill, I left the halls of power behind following the 2010 election cycle to focus on pursing a master’s degree in publishing while also continuing to write and maintain my involvement within the wedding industry. Even though I don’t have to wear high heels as often anymore, every once in a while I take them off the rack and slip them onto my feet, remembering the journey they’ve been a part of, the journey that’s still ongoing, and the journey I hope to share with you here.

I remember once reading the expression that it’s the journey, not the destination, that really matters. I believe this completely, and find inspiration in the world around me every day, whether it comes to food, fashion, fitness, travel, career or any of life’s many adventures. In short, I'm on a mission to live a positive, meaningful life to the fullest, whether East Coast or West Coast, in high heels or flip-flops.

Thanks for reading and joining me for the ride!