Actress Bridget Moynahan treasures a pair of motorcycle boots she bought following her split from American footballer Tom Brady because it represented taking back control of her life amid the paparazzi nightmare.
The Blue Bloods star dated the top quarterback for two years until December, 2006, and two months later, it was revealed that she was pregnant – and Brady, who had already moved on with his now-wife, supermodel Gisele Bundchen, was the child’s father.
The bombshell news turned Bridget into a paparazzi target, and during one shopping trip at the height of the relationship drama, she found a little comfort in a fashionable new purchase – and she’s kept them ever since.
Bridget has shared the history of the boots in her new book, Our Shoes, Our Selves: 40 Women, 40 Stories, 40 Pairs of Shoes, in which she and a number of other top female professionals reveal all about their most beloved piece of footwear.
“I did buy a pair of motorcycle boots that I found in Los Angeles during a very crazy time that I was being kind of hounded by the paparazzi…,” she recalled on TV show Live with Kelly and Ryan.
“I was just feeling very assaulted, and when I got into the store, I saw these boots that just resonated with me from my time on the East Coast and who I used to be before this whole thing (baby drama) happened,” she added. “I bought them, put them on, and decided to take a little bit of my life back in that moment.
“I’ve had them on for 12 years now. They’re kinda comfort food for my feet.”
The actress came up with the idea for the new book while clearing out her New York City storage unit, which had been stuffed full of old shoes she was planning to donate.
“I kept pulling them out of that pile and saying, ‘But I love these, I can’t get rid of these,’ and I didn’t know why because I was never wearing them, and it came down to memories…,” she shared.
“So I thought, ‘I’ll photograph them so at least I can look at them later and not be paying for the storage unit’. And then I talked to my friend, Amanda Benchley, who I did the book with, and we thought, ‘Maybe other women have the same (experience)’.”
Among the noted women interviewed for Our Shoes, Our Selves was late U.S. First Lady Barbara Bush, who opened up about her collection of Keds, the popular casual canvas sneakers with rubber soles.
“Barbara Bush did this wonderful story on these Keds shoes,” Bridget said. “She just loved Keds shoes, and people would send her Keds shoes from all over the world and sometimes paint on them and everything.
“It was just a special thing for me to have her in the book, and for her to do that story, because I went there once, to visit her (in Texas) and I lost my luggage, so I had to borrow things, and Barbara gave me some Keds shoes to wear. It was just very sweet; she’s such a beautiful woman.”
Our Shoes, Our Selves: 40 Women, 40 Stories, 40 Pairs of Shoes is released on 9 April (19).
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