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Wednesday, October 19, 2016

First, Last, Only

For some strange reason this morning I am remembering the first time I saw and used a microwave oven.  It was at a friends house in the mid 1960's, a friend whose family had the means to own one of the first microwaves.  It was called a Radarange.  We spent the afternoon thawing out frozen hotdogs and eating them.  Now everybody has a microwave oven. First times often become routine.

Do you remember the first time you did or saw something that was totally new to you? Things like: the first time you saw the ocean, your first plane/train/bus ride, your first car, first love, or first loss. The lists can be endless because the old cliche is true, there is a first time for everything.

The same can be said for the last time as well. Accept it or not we all eventually die and there will be, and already has been, a last time for everything. We remember some of these like our last encounter with a deceased loved one, or saying goodbye to someone while knowing you'll not see them again. Last times often become wistful or haunting memories.

Sometimes the first and last come together and we experience something for the only time. We may remember a special place we visited knowing we'll never return, or a person we'll never see again. Or perhaps it was something you knew you didn't wish to do again, as in: That's the first and last time I'll ever do that! Only times are sometimes remembered with regret, relief, or pride at having done something at least once.

Our lives consist of first, last, and only times. Perhaps it would behoove us to pay more attention to all of them, to experience each moment and what that moment brings as fully and as best we can. For whatever the moment brings, it may be the first or last of many, or it my be the only chance we get.

It occurs to me that an attentive life is like breathing. We can't remember our first breath, nor will we know when our last comes, but we can always pay attention to one we are taking right now.

1 comment:

  1. In the mean time.... but we're always in the mean time. Thanks Andy for reminding us.