Your “First” Doesn’t Have To Set The Tone For Forever

Tuesday, July 25th, 2017

Yes, it’s me! Still trying to wind up all these sexual assault posts. Will I ever finish?! Who knows. I believe! Hopefully you do too. (Eep.) I genuinely thing I’m almost done, but I’ve thought that for a while. Anyway.

One of the things I keep going back to over and over in this posts – one of the things that just breaks my heart sometimes is it feels like there are all these “firsts” that were marred.

He was one of the first people I met and trusted in New York.
I had just moved here.

I had gotten a real bed with a frame and everything for the first time in 5 years (since I’d quit college to move to LA). It was my gorgeous “princess bed” I’d always dreamed of.

It was the first time anybody had ever made me breakfast.
I’d been with a couple of cool ass amazing men before, but them making me breakfast was just a thing that had never happened (and I’d never done it for them either). I mean, we’d ordered dinner that had become breakfast a few times. But I don’t cook. And I also a lot of times don’t really eat breakfast (unless I’m at a sweet, sweet hotel with a make-your-own waffle machine that I can’t resist….) But this guy cooked. So, I had breakfast made for me for the first time ever. And it just felt so freaking intimate and like I was in a movie or something.

And being assaulted by that man that I sort of had all these first-ish things with, it starts to feel like, “AGH! Waffles are RUINED, My furniture is RUINED, New York is RUINED, and on and on.”

But like, one person definitely doesn’t define everything. And your “first” anything doesn’t have to set the tone for the rest.

I think about my first marathon. It was awful. I picked the wrong one. I do not like trail runs. I like road races. And I picked a trail anyway, for some inexplicable reason. I had a red-eye in that morning and barely slept. I set myself up for failure. The race took like 100,000 years. I finished. It was fine. (But it was awful.)

In the first play I was in, I wasn’t awful, but I had so much to learn! (I was still working on just projecting back in those days! (I know. Me. Being a little too quiet. Can you believe there was ever a time?)

And now I’ve run marathons I’ve loved.. I’ve been in a one-person musical, and have an Equity card. Things turned around big time. And whenever I run a marathon now, I don’t think, “Well, these can never be good, because that first one was awful.” I just enjoy it. And I’m way better at it now.

Also, I know we must all know this, but of course your first also isn’t necessarily awful. My first job was great. My first ultra-marathon was perfect. Sometimes things are wonderful from the beginning, and that’s awesome!

But, your first doesn’t have to set the tone.

And that’s been a very hard thing for me to truly remember and take in. And when I cry and cry about things being “ruined,” I need to try to remember that the first is not always the best. Sometimes the first is the worst. It’s ridiculous. It’s awful. It’s sad. It’s painful. It’s whatever is not good. But that doesn’t mean it has to not be good forever and ever.

 

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