I had corrective surgery for bunions on both feet at the same time in September 2016. At the time of surgery I was almost 61.

I would just like to say that the whole experience, from initial enquiry to post operation follow-ups, has been exactly “what it says on the can” with both Susann Parker and Dr Nowak telling me what to do and what to expect at each stage.

On the day of the operation I was looked after extremely well. The procedure was remarkably quick – under half an hour – and at no time was I in pain or feeling panicky. I totally recommend the “twilight” method of anaesthesia.

I only needed the crutches for a couple of days, The sandals I was given were very comfortable and I still wear them around the house.

The month of sitting about did get a bit tedious and I recommend that you think carefully about the time of year to have the operation. I deliberately chose the end of September so that I could enjoy walking and cycling throughout the summer and then I was back on my feet and able to enjoy visiting and going for walks with family at Christmas.

I hadn’t fully appreciated that I wouldn’t be able to shower for a month afterwards, and I had planned to wear surgical bootees in the shower – but I soon realised that I wouldn’t be able to get them on and off. I recommend stocking up on baby wipes! Washing my hair was also something I had to plan to do and I discovered that the best way of dong this was to sit on a chair alongside the bath and lean across to use the shower hose. Even after the dressings were removed and I could shower again, I felt vulnerable standing in the shower, and to begin with I would recommend sitting on a seat.

Once the dressings were off my feet and legs really responded well to foot balm and moisturiser.

Having broken my wrist earlier in the year I understood the importance of doing the exercises to regain mobility. I set myself the task of doing foot raises every two hours, starting as soon as I got out of bed. The discipline has paid off and I’m still doing them, along with some other exercises – though not as frequently!

I was back in my roomy boots in time for the winter and at the beginning of April bought a “proper” pair of shoes to wear at work. Whenever I look at my feet, I can’t help but admire their new shape and am amazed that they really belong to me! In the early days after the bandages were removed, I wanted to keep checking that they were still looking good and hadn’t reverted to their former shape as I slept! I am now looking forward to summer and being able to show them off in sandals.

The whole experience has indeed been a journey, as Susann told me it would be at the beginning. May I just add that I have not been asked to write this piece – I volunteered to do it. With today’s pressure to give constant feedback on everything we purchase, I am pleased to say this was not the case with the European Foot Institute!