The lovely Stephanie is wading into the meme waters with "five firsts", and tagged whoever wanted to play. Think about your first anything, she said. First car. First meal of the day. First - of course - love. Anything. I've been thinking about the topic since I last read it yesterday, so I guess I'll give it a shot.
First surgery: At six weeks old (I can't believe I ever weighed ten pounds. And couldn't talk!) my lip that had never fused was sewn together - a first attempt at wholeness that's more or less been a recurring theme through my years, it occurs to me now. No photos of me exist prior to my lip repair, and I wish one did.
First print: The first time I ever made a print in the darkroom, I looked down in the developer and saw the black and white tones form an image I had made on plain paper. And I said, perhaps for the first time in my life, "It's like magic."
First Confession: I mentally added my grade school sins to the stain of the original one, and lined up with my classmates on the stained-glass shiny blue carpet outside the row of wooden confessionals in the back of our cavernous church. Once inside, behind the screen, I promptly forgot the words to the ritual. I sat silent and terrified for a minute or two, until the priest - who knew me, who had baptized me, who was friends with my grandfather, said "Boo!", and then laughed softly, and spoke the prayers aloud so that I could follow along.
First date(s): A lovely night at Planet X coffeehouse (that later burned down) and a drive home through an ice storm. Dinner, a movie and awkward conversation on my couch. Another movie and macaroni and cheese on another couch. Mostly things just come to be.
First paid writing gig: I won several two-dollar bills that I still have somewhere in one of those long white envelopes with the plastic address window, for writing the "best poem about the Redskins" in elementary school, the year they won the Superbowl. I know nothing about football, but no one needed to know it was based on hearsay - just that it rhymed.