(This started out as one thing but writing it, it evolved into other things. Thoughts that opened up other thoughts and ideas. A therapy session of discovery in writing. It IS stream of consciousness with very little if any editing. Fresh ink from the mind. )
Lasts And Firsts
Feeling my mortality more than ever as I get older and realizing I am the sand is getting less in my hourglass, I have found an odd byproduct of it:
I became aware of the “MY LAST” thinking and labeling when I fell in-love more than 2 years ago and told the woman that she would be, “my last” girl friend and possible wife. Ok my LAST woman. It sounds like there should be a dramatic SIGH every time that word is used. SIGH, “My Last” dot dot dot (…).
Yes, very MELODRAMATIC.
Aware of this I have realized that EVERYTHING at any moment can be, “My last”. Or YOUR Last. Every action and word. You or I can think, “these words are or could be the last anyone will hear from me or remember of me.” It’s like social media posts. Hmmm this guy wrote about pooping and that was… HIS LAST WORDS WRITTEN! Or she posted a cat video and …
You get it.
THAT part is Vanity and Ego. HOW we will be remembered and what for. It used-to mean a lot to me then I looked at what I remembered people for that had exited my life and I had to laugh. Most of it is negative. People I knew at work or went to school with. Come to think of it, I remember very little about the people I went to school with so long ago and hope that when they hear my name they scrunch up their faces and say, “WHO”? We are all so obsessed with OURSELVES at that time.
And now, for me, I realize.
At my age there is probably some truth to, My Last as a very real possibility. For example, I got a new car last year with the extreme help of an older very generous brother. I told people, “this will be my last car”. They laughed. I tend to hang onto vehicles as long as I can. It’s like clothing that fits well. In truth, probably hang onto the car for another 10 or more years if I can. Maybe in a few years I will be too senile to drive or poor. Maybe I will go nuts and off myself. So yeah it could easily be My Last.
Have been drooling over a new computer for a while. Ahhhhh how to talk myself into it. How to rationalize getting it?
MY LAST! (To the rescue).
Oh yeeeeessssss. Desire for bright shiny things can use THAT melodramatic excuse. “I bought this new iMac because … (SIGH…) I wanted to have ONE LAST FINE COMPUTER. Yes that would be MY LAST COMPUTER”.
At my age I can use that excuse desiring something to cheaply (in this case more like expensively) rationalize the purchase of something. A big toy. Old man wants a shiny bright toy. Ah, HIS LAST! Of course! Let him go get it no matter the cost! HE IS A DYING MAN!
News Flash: We are all DYING. Or about to die. It just takes a few more decades or fewer minutes for others to die.
There is a luxury to all this, “last” talk. How many of the billions of people in this world alive now and those that have come before me have had the luxury of COMFORTABLY choosing what they said their last pleasure would be?
I remember how MY FIRST was such a big things to me so long ago. My FIRST sex. Making love. Marriage. Getting drunk! Thinking about it for the first time what great joy was there in realizing I read MY FIRST BOOK!? So many FIRSTS that were not memorable or just taken for granted. So many that were regrettable (yeah, my first great sex adventure! ANTICLIMACTIC!)
First and Last.
It comes down to DESIRE in us, I think. I could have kept my old car going with duct tape but desired a new one. I can keep THIS old computer going for a few more years and save money.
DESIRE, EGO AND VANITY have so much to do with FIRST and LAST. The FIRSTS are more about goals. That FIRST bike. First kiss. First Job. First house, apartment, dog, cat, taste of this or that food. First surgery first… accomplishment. There is TRIUMPH to it. Adventure.
A sad, yes melodramatic completion. Finality. Before I leave I want to play with this toy as the door opens for me to reluctantly leave for the last time.
As I leave these thoughts here I smile thinking of what that first breath we take. What a thing of beauty! The last breath we take is one of the ultimate surprises. It ends with the reason we all die: We end that cycle of First and Last. Breaths.
I need to sometimes savor a breath.
Smile as release it
It was not my last. 🙂