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Thoughts For Thursday: When Was The Last Time…

June 24, 2010 · 72 comments

in Life, Thoughts For Thursday

We all have routines and rituals in our lives and sometimes, they abruptly come to an end, without any advance warning.  My husband and I often talk about how you never know when the ‘last time’ something will happen.

For me, a lot of these ‘lasts’ are tied to my kids.  Two of my most vivid are the following:

  1. I was holding my youngest son, who wasn’t feeling well.  I can’t quite remember how old he was, but as he was drifting off to sleep in my arms, I realized that was probably the last time he would ever fall asleep while I was holding him.  I tried to just enjoy the moment as long as I could, and I remember not ever wanting to lay him down in his room to sleep.  I was kind of lucky to make this realization as it was happening because I was right, it was the last time. What I wouldn’t give to go back to that night.  Life was so much simpler back then!
  2. I used to read to my oldest son all the time.   We rarely watched tv, but I read to him incessantly.  This got to be quite a challenge as I had 2 other children right after him, but I still found the time.   As he got a little older (around 2 or so), I started reading him chapter books.  I think I must have read him 50 Hardy Boy books.  The funniest part is that he started adopting words from the book, and even though he was so young, he sounded like he was 75.  (“Mommy, there is a portly fellow over there…”)  We moved on to Harry Potter books and we kept this up even when he was able to read independently.   Then one day, it just stopped.  I think it was because we started a book he lost interest in, and we never started a new book.   Had I gotten advance notice, I would have thrown a party celebrating all the wonderful time we shared reading.

We never know when the ‘last’ will be for most things.  When will be the last time we share a meal with an elderly relative?  When is the last time you may walk into a friend’s home, not knowing you will end up losing touch with them in the future?  When is the last time your child will run up and greet you with a giant hug, not caring what anyone else thinks?

Since the ‘last time’ can rarely be predicted, do your best to always be kind to others, because you never know if you will get  the opportunity to speak to that person again.  Always share a compliment when someone does a good job.  Do your best to not take people for granted so that you don’t have as many ‘last times’.

In addition, do your best to keep yourself healthy so you don’t have to worry about when the last time will be that you can run around the block or go up the stairs.  We only have one body, so it is up to us to make it last as long as we can.  Everyone wants to enjoy good health well into retirement.  Do all you can by eating right and exercising to increase the odds of having good health.

Thank you for reading!

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{ 70 comments… read them below or add one }

Dave June 24, 2010 at 7:51 am

Great post – thank you! I sometimes think back to my childhood friends and wonder when was the last time I saw them or was at their house. I had no idea it would be the last time when it happened. I agree, it’s important to make the most of each day.

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Kris June 24, 2010 at 9:16 am

Dave – Thanks for commenting. Sometimes life is busy and it is so easy to get wrapped up in little things that you can forget that each day is important. I personally need to focus more on making the best of each each day instead of just getting through it.

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Jackie June 24, 2010 at 8:38 am

Aw now I’m thinking back to the last time we read a book together as a family…

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Kris June 24, 2010 at 9:15 am

Jackie – I know, sometimes these memories are bittersweet. Writing that post really made me miss those younger years!

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Budgeting in the Fun Stuff June 24, 2010 at 9:46 am

You are so right. I have so many last times…

As for the big hug from your kid in public, you might have thought it was the last time, but I started doing things like that randomly to my parents to keep them on their toes (plus it’s fun to make my dad laugh). For anybody who doesn’t know, I’m 27, so it is pretty funny when I decide to go in for a big hug with the running and everything…seriously…chubby little red-head woman taking off at full speed (ok, ok…MY full speed)…picture that…lol. 🙂

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Kris June 24, 2010 at 3:56 pm

BFS – Keep up the good work and keep being so great to your parents! We need it!

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Money Reasons June 24, 2010 at 7:29 pm

I just experienced one of those “The Last” moments last year? I use to tell my son made up stories at night, mainly Batman. I wasn’t very good at it, but he liked it and would tell me stories about Sponge Bob (and sometimes his Batman versions). I never got around to getting an audio recording of any of the stories he told me, but I wish I had…

Now, I find that it’s worth the extra work to go out of my way to try to capture those moment or make them special in some way, if possible.

Thanks for a great post, I felt like I was with you in the same room or place!

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Kris June 24, 2010 at 9:09 pm

Money Reasons – thank you so much for what is one of the nicest comments I have gotten so far!

Ironically, I used to tell my kids Spiderman stories. They still ask for them on their birthdays.

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Sandy L June 27, 2010 at 6:46 am

Oh wow..I do “imagination stories” too. They are so fun, especially when the plot goes in a direction that my son doesn’t want and then he takes over the story. He usually wants them to be about power rangers and himself as the main characters, but it’s the best. Sometimes you just get tired of reading curious george 1000 times in a row and it was one of the best deviations from our bedtime routine. (He still wants a real story too which I oblige).

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Kris June 27, 2010 at 10:03 am

Sandy – Stories can get kind of boring. I have always been fascinated about how you can think about other things, like a grocery list, while reading a book.

Keep making up those stories! I am still in debt one spider man story. I need to address that tonight! 🙂

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Rebecca The Greeniac June 28, 2010 at 3:25 am

Sorry I’m late to this party, but this post really made me cry. A number of years ago I adopted a little stray cat and named her Daisy. She was a troubled soul and nothing ever was easy with her. As the years went by she mellowed a bit, started to get cuddly, and I finally felt like I was getting to bond with her.

One night I was up way too late watching TV. She had jumped on the couch with me to make “spoons”, which was here new “thing”. I really should have been in bed hours before, but she was purring and delighting in having her belly rubbed, so I just laid there with her and snuggled for another hour or two.

A few hours later she suffered a thrombosis and died shortly after. I was so glad that we had gotten to share those few beautiful hours on the couch that last night.

And then, of course, there was her older “sister” who was sick for months and months. I can’t even bear to re-tell the story of my “last times” with her, but you can read it here if you want a real tear-jerker: http://open.salon.com/blog/the_almighty_beckster/2009/12/25/the_best_christmas_present_i_ever_received

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Kris June 28, 2010 at 9:22 am

Greeniac – I am sorry I made you cry, that was never my intent!!! Your poor kitties! Your post was so very nice (I snuck over and read it), and what an interesting story of how the cats had closure. Fascinating actually.

Maybe you should avoid my blog!!

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Rebecca The Greeniac July 1, 2010 at 12:26 am

Hmmm… I think this is actually the second time you’ve made me cry. Guess I’m just sentimental.

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