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When we’re growing up, we look forward to those fabulous “firsts” — the first grade, the first date, the first kiss — all kinds of new adventures.

As we move forward as adults, we start noticing the “lasts”. Some of these are intentional. A few years ago after spending a soggy week in Orlando with two 12-year-old girls, I looked my [now ex-] husband squarely in the eye and stated quite clearly that I had visited my last amusement park.

Some of these lasts are good things, like when you finally figure out it’s the last time you ever want to drink too much and pray to the porcelain god all night.

There are also some “nevers”. You know, those things on your bucket list that you’ll probably never do. I’ll never take up sky diving. I haven’t given up on learning to fly a helicopter or how to speak Spanish, but with each year that passes, those things¬†inch closer to that “never” column.

But what I’ve come to realize lately, is that there are “lasts” that sneak by you and don’t realize it until it’s too late.¬† There ought to be signs or trumpets or announcements that, “Hey, this is the last time you’re going to get to do this, so pay attention and enjoy it.” Like having dinner at a restaurant only to have it close shortly thereafter. Heck, if you’d known it was going to close, you might have foregone the diet and enjoyed the world-famous dessert one last time.

I’ve had a pretty significant “last” come to my attention. And it’s something that I thought I’d do again, but I’ve come to the realization that I was wrong. It’s sad when that happens, when a chapter closes in your life.

With RA, some of those chapters close sooner than they should, and you get to enjoy firsts that you’d rather not: first dose of Methotrexate, first time to use a cane, first time you really can’t get out of bed.

The good thing about it is, there are still unread chapters in my book (and hopefully yours), adventures to be had, firsts (and repeats) that I really enjoy.

Thanks for checking in.

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