Today I cried. Which is hard to admit because I’m not much of a crier; I kind of get over everything quickly and I never like ruining my makeup. But, today I sobbed my tired little eyes out.
I’ve done about 50 miles of walking within the last three days. My legs aren’t really sore and I love to walk, so the 50 miles aren’t the real problem. My big problem is my blisters.
I got to my room and peeled my socks off, and then slowly my bandages. I looked at my feet and began to cry. It wasn’t because the blisters hurt, it was because I was just so frustrated.
I have been doing everything right; my shoes fit fine, I’m moisturizing my feet, and I’ve been letting little blisters dry over night. Yet, I had four new blisters and two old ones were more ugly than ever.
My heart was breaking because I could not believe that something so small and seemingly insignificant as skin could threaten my Camino. I didn’t have tendinitis, knee pain or sore muscles like most people do by now, instead I just had blisters.
I calmed down, and sitting on my bed with the Swiss Army knife and medical supplies that my friend Peter lent me, fighting sleep, I began to cut away the skin on my largest blisters. They were too large to dry on their own, which I learned after I tried to leave them alone. Once the skin was gone, I was left with bright red patches of flesh.
Next, I moved on to my smaller, non-fleshy blisters and pulled a needle and thread through them. Threading through a blister allows it to drain because a thread absorbs the liquid inside. I felt like Raggedy Ann sewing my own self up.
My feet look like Frankenstein’s, patches of open flesh and grey thread sewn through multiple toes. It’s time to call it a night and do it all over again tomorrow, because this is just a small bump in my otherwise incredible adventure.
You’re not the only one to suffer the frustrations of blisters. So don’t feel Aline. I walked with a similar one for 200 km. Compeed failed to stop it growing. In the end, I’m a fan of the spanish method. I never cut the skin away. It seemed to dry out and become callous like. I just taped it for walking and let it air every day. Word of caution. Keep it clean and inspect every shower room you use. If you think the albergue isn’t spotlessly clean in their showers, don’t stay there. Infections setting in will result in a visit to the hospital, and end the walking part of your camino. Other than that, that’s a beautiful looking blister. I must show you mine sometime. Buen camino!
Thank you so very much for your words of kindness and your tips! An infection is my big concern and I will certainly be sure to check the showers! And hey, blisters are just part of the journey, right?? Much love xoxo