Monday, October 8, 2012

Ten Things I Took Away From My 10 Year HS Reunion

I am a nostalgia junkie. I occasionally look back at my yearbooks and scrapbooks, post old photos to social networks, remember stories about just about everyone I've ever met... it's just who I am. So when the time came for my high school reunion... I was pretty pumped. The whole myspace/facebook/twitter trend has really killed the whole "I wonder how everyone is" aspect of a reunion. Most people that you want to stay in touch with from your past, you've sought out already and KNOW how they are, how many kids they have, where they work, if they got fat, or any other cliche thing people love to go to reunions for just by "cyber-stalking" their profiles :) Regardless of this fact, I still put myself out there and opened myself up to the experience of enduring people I haven't seen/spoken to in 10+ years (some on purpose). Not gonna lie... I am SOOO glad NONE of my ex boyfriends were there... haha Of course I had some friends there that I still remain in touch with, so I was looking forward to hanging with them and introducing Jimmy to the ones that haven't met him yet. AND SO! onto the things I have taken away from this experience.

NUMBER ONE: most importantly, the first thing is Some Things Never Change. I arrived before anyone else to the Inn where the event was held and Jim and I had some dinner and a drink while the people started filtering in. As a people watcher, I found it fascinating that everyone followed the same social structure set 10 (well, even more!) years ago. A few people I knew from middle school and lost touch with since filtered in and formed 2 distinctive groups on different sides of the bar. Reason being : there was a recent break up *divorce actually* and everyone there awkwardly took a "side". JUST like high school. Then, as the night went on, the more popular kids from back then all formed another separate group WAY on the other side of the bar in a different room by the pool tables and barely mingled with anyone else. Not that I wanted to see or speak to any of them... I just found it funny that nothing changed in that aspect. I remained a neutral party in high school being that I didn't really have an outward personality. I was in art club and had a diverse spread of friends in different social "levels" in the school caste system, so I spoke to people from all of the divided sects in the reunion. Some things never change.

NUMBER TWO: The prom king had the after-party at his place. We desperately avoided all invites we received to attend this... I guess this one counts as the some things never change stated above :) but still deserves it's own spot.

NUMBER THREE: high school reunion movies make more sense now. I played scenes from them in my head as things were happening. I am really glad we had a low-key event instead of the movie-depicted formal forced prom in the old gym routine... movies that came to mind: Romy and Michele's High School Reunion (I didn't have a back brace like her, but I did feel like the outcast in hs sometimes so I related to this one. I was awkward.. still am!), Peggy Sue Got Married (I always fantasized about having this relive-a-moment experience and wake back up in your life knowing it's better), Zack and Miri Make a Porno, Grosse Pointe Blank (great songs and John Cusack yum), American Pie Reunion, The Big Chill, Hot Tub Time Machine...

NUMBER FOUR: I can ride a mechanical bull. Maybe not well... but I stayed on for a billion years longer than I ever expected. I have enough courage to get up in front of everyone there and do it. AND I wasn't even drunk :) I had a shot of Jameson and a beer in me but that's all. I swore I would go up there and not be able to get up on the thing to begin with but I did it! There's something I never before thought I'd ever be able to say... I rode a mechanical bull and survived! haha 
photographic proof

 NUMBER FIVE: Just because you remember someone, it doesn't mean they remember you. I went to this thing figuring everyone would know me... that wasn't the case. No idea why this surprised me.. I have always been shy. I guess I figured because I was involved with a bunch of clubs and took a ton of classes that people would at least remember my face or name. Most people did. Only 2 or 3 people that I encountered had to really think to remember me. I knew everyone at least by face or name that I talked to. Being a people watcher and observant person, I knew I would though.I even know upper and underclass grad year kids that were there.

NUMBER SIX: Don't worry about the people you disliked... no sense in wasting energy on stupid things that happened eons ago. Think of how different you are and how different those people may be by now. Although I did state that some things never change, PEOPLE do. Old habits die hard, as displayed by the segregation of the room. I DID however sit with Jim and fill him in on the who's who and what I remembered them for in school. Whenever I encountered one of these people, I politely waved and smiled or excused myself from conversations.

NUMBER SEVEN: I "look exactly the same"! I heard from just about everyone that I look the same as I did in high school. I just smiled and said thanks... I am used to people at work assuming I am a high school student - happens constantly. :) Guess it's a good thing to look young.

age 17
age 28

NUMBER EIGHT: Don't have high expectations . I made sure that I didn't idealize or visualize anything that could or may happen. I tend to think waaayy too much about everything and I'm glad I didn't put much emotional stock into this. I went with an open mind and even Jim had fun. Which brings me to...

NUMBER NINE: I have a great husband. He willingly and enthusiastically put up with going to another school's reunion with hardly anyone he knew... listened to stories that had nothing to do with him or anyone he knew besides me... he was charming to all of my past friends and acquaintances and actually had fun. We are NOT bar people... this was not our "scene", but we both had a great night. AND both hit the "enough is enough" point at the same exact time haha
check out the "I'm having fun!"goofy camera face

NUMBER TEN: ten years is a great number to span these things out. Any sooner, and I might not have ever gone. I have had my fill of high school awkwardness,drama, and forced social environments to fill that time period. If we have a 20th reunion, I say bring it on!


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