My entire family has booming footsteps.
The first time that my wife stayed over at my parents house during the holidays, she thought that a band of warrior giants had taken over the entire first floor. She believed that there was something drastically wrong with my family. I explained that we all just walk with purpose (not that there wasn’t something drastically wrong, though.)
Such purpose cannot be achieved without the intense pounding of feet on the floor when walking from one destination to another. The exact sound should be something in-between a gunshot with every footfall and a pounding on the front door with every step. I don’t know when I developed this need to walk with purpose or why my entire family has figured out the same source of pleasure from waking everyone up with nothing but moving forward, but I don’t want to ever walk another way. I don’t want to tip toe or roll my steps to avoid the inevitable.
I want to know where I am walking and why I have chosen this path to get there. I want to always hear myself coming and going, to know that I have taken these steps in my own shoes and under my own power. Whether it sounds like a stampede or a shelling of a modern city, I want each small step for mankind to be mine.
It is a countdown to whatever comes next. I don’t want to walk backwards or skip steps that I should be taking.
I once played the Big Bad Wolf in the musical Into The Woods. I had a number of Wolf-ettes that danced around me as I sang the one and only song I had in the show. Their steps were graceful and mine were ravenous. Their jumps were elegant and mine were bounding, hoping to devour something with each one. I wasn’t going to give up that sweet reward to anyone because I knew how the high notes felt in my feet, and I knew how to stand and support the low and rumbling notes. I remember giving the preview to the whole school because we were the one song that was polished long before the others. The whole show heard us coming. We figured out the steps and we did them without hesitation.
Walking loudly requires a certain amount of confidence and a certain amount of denial. We are confident in that we will not fall when we plan our foot down and we are in denial of just how disruptive we can be. We deny that our footsteps will wake up our children. We deny that they are more purposeful than they need to be. We deny that they are going to get us in trouble. And it is through this denial that we come through so easily. We are traveling in the pursuit of being heard.
Hear us. Hear us walk.