Sunday, August 28, 2011

The First Time, The Last Time

The first time we fall in love we discover a brand new emotion untaught anywhere. The first time our heart broke we started growing up. The first time we hold a baby, our very own, we remember and we felt the pride and joy of parenthood. The first time we brought the child to kindergarten, leaving her there and watching her cry in fear, our heart ached but we must be firm for the sake of her character building. The first time we took our son to the dentist and watched him fidget anxiously as he awaits the extraction of his first milk tooth, our hearts went out to him, wishing we could change place ... The first time our little girl experience the queasy feeling of puppy love and came seeking advice, we grew a little older and fonder. The first time we hold another baby in the family after, oh such a long time, we realize a new generation is taking shape and we feel somewhat worn and old.

The first time we discover we cannot see a distant object as clearly as we used to, we understand we are on the downward slope of part 2 of our life. The first time we start feeling joint pain and asked around our contemporaries, and they welcomed you into the club, you know age and deterioration has caught up, and you begin to see life from a new angle. The first time you wake up without a job to go to, you worry what you are going to do with all the time in the world ... The first time you are addressed uncle or auntie, you took offense but slowly got used to the new status. The first time you are ushered to the priority lane in banks and supermarkets you take it with some remorse that you are treated with guarded respect and caution that you are breakable.

Then the first times will give way to the beginning of many last times of your life and if you think deeply you really need strength to live positively. Can you remember the last time you drove your car and is now driven instead? What about the last time you pay your own bills? Go to the bank? Visit your dentist or doctor on your own? Bathe yourself? How about sleeping or sharing the common bed with your spouse? Saying 'I Love You'? Hold hands? Have sex? Remembering the name of your spouse before Alzheimer's disease ruin your life? The last time you feed yourself? The last time you smile? Or know what happiness is?

In between all the first and last times are the years of good times interspersed with bad times, difficult times, and discovering times. They make us what we are and prepare us to face the end time. One day we will close our eyes for the last time and if we live our lives right, awake on the other side of life's river to discover an eternity with no time to regret or miss.

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