Reflections of a Southern Yankee; The Last Time

                      This may be the last time

                      This may be the last time

                      Maybe the last time, 

                      I don’t know, oh no

                                             ~ The Rolling Stones

I’ve seen a post on Instagram a few times that hits me differently than most posts. For the record, I’m mostly against all forms of social media. I feel that it has done far more harm and damage than good. I’m so thankful it didn’t exist when I was a youngster. But I digress, so I’ll step down from my soapbox.   

The post I mentioned features a fairly generic picture of a group of kids (probably from the 80s), standing in a group with their bikes, with a caption that states that there was a last time you and your friends got together to play outside and no one was even aware of it. This struck me because of its absolute truth. I cannot specifically remember the exact last time I played with my friends, but I know for certain it happened (actually it happened several times because I moved several times as a youth). It is sobering yet bittersweet to think that there was a time when my friends and I played together (just like the thousands of times we had before), we said our goodbyes, we went home and, somehow, we never played together again. It’s a pretty good reminder that life does indeed go on – no matter what, it cannot be stopped.       

As I contemplated this particular Instagram post, it started to occur to me that life itself is nothing but an endless series of “lasts.” The more I sat and thought about it, the more “lasts” started coming to me. There was a last time I hugged each of my grandparents. The last time I did a backflip into a lake off of the dock. The last time I launched my then young sons from my shoulders into the deep end of a pool. The last time I drove a stick shift. The last time I played hide and seek with my cousins. The last time I climbed a tree or took a spelling test. The last time I wrote a letter to a loved one and put it in the mail. The list of “lasts” goes on and on and on. And, it’s only when I purposely sit and think about those “lasts” that I see how, at the time, they didn’t even seem like “lasts.” But, now they do.    

What are the “lasts” in your life? What are things you’ve been putting off or haven’t done in a long time that could possibly become a new last? (Just because something never happens again doesn’t necessarily make it a bad thing.)        

Try to make it a point to focus more in your life on those things that are your “lasts.” Cherish those moments. Hold them close in your memory and in your heart. Make more “lasts” if you can. And, do everything with love, energy and with a magnificent zeal simply because it could truly be the last time you ever do it, and you may not even be aware of it!

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