60 questions – Answer #1
When was the last time you did something for the first time?
My last First Time
When I created this set of questions quite some time ago, the answer to this first question would have been about breaking out of the daily rut and shifting from autopilot to conscious driving. It would have been about how inspiring, motivating, and life-enhancing this could be. How it makes life more colorful and exciting if you do something you have never done before from time to time. Some light start to this challenge. We would have remembered the feeling of butterflies in our stomach and the joy that doing something new can cause. The question would have been an invitation to look for nice “firsts”. And probably it could have awakened a wish: Yeah, that was nice then I want this again.
shoulda coulda woulda
Here and now, we had more “firsts” in the last months than we care to count. Most of them, well, we could live easily without them. First time stockpiling on toilet paper and yeast. The first positive corona test – F*** The first job loss because of a pandemic that was cut-throat. First-time home-schooling.
But also: Sewing community masks for others. The first online beer-tasting. The first concert or another cultural event that was streamed. An explosion of creativity and enormous flexibility.
Each and every one of us has a unique pattern of pandemic firsts: Losses – some tragic-, wins, things that make you angry, memorable moments of community and kindness, or moments to be proud of yourself or your group. The last months had it all.
A lot of undesired stuff, of course! But also positive things that would not exist without the pandemic. Would we prefer to have no pandemic? That’s without question! Would a lot of people carrying a heavy burden right now want to switch back? Definitely!
One of the most surprising questions I was asked during the pandemic was by a very good friend. She asked me: “What is the best thing that happened to you because of Corona?”*
The best that has happened to me was that I participated in an online writing workshop. Since then, I am a member of a writing group with three other writers from Austria and Germany. Without Corona, there would have been no online workshop. Now we meet about once a week, we give each other „friendly feedback“, talk about writing and our writing practice. It helps tremendously in writing more consistently and being motivated to put my writing first. Without this constant flow of encouragement, my momentary „first“ would not exist.
I am starting a Writing-Challenge and talk about it.
*I am well aware of how lucky I am, that I can even think about such a question. For a lot of people, this would have been an insult considering what they go through. Next weeks’ question 2 addresses this again.