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  • Writer's pictureTodd Stevens

The Last Time

I lost both of my grandmothers over the course of the last five years. They’ve both been on my mind a lot over the last couple of weeks. We know that we are only given so many times to hug someone, tell them that we love them, that we appreciate them, those are things we all recognize, and we all understand. I’ve been thinking about that a little further, a little deeper and more detailed. It started with me thinking about the very last cup of coffee they enjoyed. There had to be one, a final cup that tasted just right and hit the spot perfectly after drinking 100,000 or more over the course of their lives. Did they know, this is going to be the last great cup of coffee I ever drink, I doubt it. In fact, I doubt they thought about that last great cup of coffee any more than the other 100,000 that came before it. How many things were the very last thing for them, and they didn’t even realize it? The last time they drove a car. The last time they picked up and held one of their children. The last time they read a book. The last time they ever watched a movie. The last time they mowed a lawn or picked an apple. The last time they saw a loved one before they passed away. The last day they ever held their husband’s hand. The last time they baked cookies, or a pie…or pound cake. The last time they were passionate enough to get angry, or hurt. The last time they shed tears for a loved one. The last time they ever made love.

All of these things had a very last time, and I wonder if they knew, as they were doing them, this will be the last time, or, if those things passed by unnoticed and it wasn’t until sometime later that they realized that they no longer did those things. My guess is that they didn’t recognize anything as being the last time, and neither do most people. I don’t recall the last time I held each child of mine, or the last time I played an organized baseball game, or many, many other things I did for the last time, but there are last times for everything. Watching people grow old, and sick, and pass milestones of things they have done one final time is hard…I think I’m going to start paying closer attention to the last time.

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