I was having a conversation the other day with my husband. Lost somewhere between reminiscence and hope, I asked him if he thought that we still had “firsts,” to look forward to, because the best feeling in the world is a first. First bubble you blew on your own. First bike ride. First backyard campout. First sleepover. First field trip. First trophy. First kiss. First love. First fight. First loss. First crummy apartment. First roommate. First job. First house. First child. And so on. It made me think of the writer Chuch Palahniuk who once said, “You realize that our mistrust of the future makes it hard to give up the past.”
My sister always tells me that I hold on to things; It’s true. I do dwell on the past, because I know my past – it was filled with hundreds of firsts that made my heart beat faster … made my eyes open wider … made me feel more alive. And suddenly, in the car with my husband of nearly eleven years, thirty-two and somewhat settled into routine, I became overwhelmed with the fear of when my “last” first might occur. Even more frightening was the prospect that maybe it had. My husband, quickly realizing that I was on the proverbial “ledge” (once again), slowly talked me down, promising me word by word and step by step that we still had a world of “firsts” to encounter and claim in our yet-to-be life of adventures. I love him for that. But sometimes I get so wrapped up in the “what’s-next-because-I-don’t-want-to-miss it,” mentality, that I forget I’m not meant to be in charge. I’m meant to BE … and let being, be enough. This stream of consciousness writing is my effort to do just that.
Sometimes empty wishes soar, above my mind or near my door
and then I am inclined to think my life is passing near the brink
of all that was and was to be, of all my own slight history.
So then I think my future’s more than simply what I had in store,
for days and weeks and years ahead, I’m living in those days instead
and time, I thought, I hadn’t spent – so carelessly has came and went.
Then I am left with silent longing for a sense of apt belonging
of feeling deeply, sure-fulfilled of what I wanted, wished or willed.
And yet I wonder if I know, where truly I do long to go
am I just ever-lost and aching? Passing? Missing? Or mistaking?
I think I know, but when I’m there, I find myself less self-aware
’til once again I’m captive, free … chained to what I don’t yet see.
My vision has been apparated, haunting new dreams while I waited
between desire coming true and unformed plans that are too new
for me to know or recognize, although they pass before my eyes.
So what answer can I give my restless spirit but to live?
Then someday, when in memory … I’ll find my purpose was … just be.
Regardless of where you’ve been, or the wonderful firsts you’ve had, I pray that you will find contentment in being here and now and with me … until the next great plot point in your story unfolds.