Posted on April 13, 2018
by Bonnie Rae
A couple years ago I started compiling a list of “lasts”. You know, those things in your life you have done for the last time. My diminished abilities dictate some, advancements in technology others. Some might call these tech changes “progress” but really I’m not too sure.
Here’s how it started …
Things I’ve done for the last time:
Licked a stamp
Voted in a booth
Used a pay phone
Bought a roll of film
Dialed a rotary telephone
Driven a stick-shift
Seasoned a pan
Changed my own oil
(oh wait, I’ve never done that .. haha)
I’ve listened to my last cassette tape, gone to my last movie at the drive-in, paid my last long distance bill.
I’ll never again take a long walk with my Mom or throw a football with my Dad. I’ll never play soccer. I’ll never run. I’ll never sit cross-legged on the floor.
I won’t ever have another first kiss,
or first love
or a first job.
I’ll never have a child.
There are “lasts” that I can’t mention because they send me down the rabbit-hole of regret. Others, I won’t mention because I’m not quite ready to concede them to this list. I forever hold out hope for “butterfly moments” . Believing at my very core that what often appears to be the end of a thing is actually more of a beginning. These moments can happen at any time. It’s probably the best thing of all about being alive. There is something magical about hope. Something beautiful about not knowing what will happen next.
Lord knows I haven’t done everything in this life I have wanted. And all of this begs the question: are there any “firsts” still up ahead ? And will I have the courage to live into that knowing ?
While it’s not quite time for the credits to roll, I am definitely aware of these shifting winds and the narrowing of the path ahead.
God grant me serenity,
and wisdom …
This is so fun–and bittersweet. I kind of like a game I play in my head sometimes, listing obsolete things (like glass shampoo bottles). I’ve thought it would be a great parlor game! You obviously don’t have my mother’s box full of old uncancelled checks. I will be licking for some time to come, as I string them across envelopes, though that doesn’t happen often either, as bills are paid by auto draft. Thanks! I might start my own list. I hate the thought of putting manual transmission driving on the list. Not sorry to have said bye-bye to changing my own oil. (I think camping alone is on your list of firsts, right? I hiking alone for the first time wasn’t so long ago. Perhaps you will take up yoga–you don’t have to sit cross-legged, it’s all about your own body.)
Well certainly you are correct about there being some really wonderful “firsts” ahead. By Friday morning I will be free to start planning my summer. Camping and yoga are both on my list. That’s where the courage comes in. I’ll look forward to reading your list someday too.
If you’ll never run or sit cross-legged on a floor, that means you’ve lost the use of your legs?
No, still walk plenty, but a reconstructed knee lands those two things on my list.
Ouch. Well, could be worse…especially if you couldn’t walk at all. I’d feel worse than Cole Porter being unable to play his piano with the pedals. Is it a fear of breaking thing or legitimate doctor warning not to run with that?