Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Reunions Can Be Tricky

Relationships come and go. When you're in high school you think it'll be the absolute end of the world when everyone leaves for a different college town. You tell everyone at graduation that you'll keep in touch, but rarely do. You get busy at college, you make new friends, and your life moves forward. You find that if you do get together with some of the 'old gang' everyone just talks about the big game, the prom, the marching band, and that unforgettable trip to Cedar Point. You don't have as much in common anymore because you have a new life. And that's okay. They probably do too.
You make new friends in college; you broaden your horizons. You have common interests because of your major or minor. You have four, maybe five, years together. You're older now, and hopefully wiser. You make relationships based on more than living down the street from one another or having a nearby locker. Surprisingly you'll make those one or two friendships with people that you knew before college but didn't travel in the same circles back in the day. With all of the drama and cliques removed you now have a fresh start. Then there are those who take a different path and go to work or get married or enlist in the Armed Forces.
Suddenly your five and ten year reunions roll around and you have to ask yourself the BIG question; 'Will I go? Should I go?' At my earlier class reunions everyone seemed to do one of two things; either relive the past or try to out impress each other. Needless to say my ten year reunion was the last one I went to. I had an opportunity to attend my 30th, but reluctantly passed on it. Between Kindergarten and 12th grade I had attended six different schools. I moved a lot and therefore had a hard time feeling like I ever belonged in any one place. I seriously thought about attending my 30th reunion but wondered if too much time had gone by. Many of my classmates had known each other their whole lives; many had gone off to college together. Would anyone even remember me? I was the editor of our yearbook; the first issue to ever have a senior section printed in color ... we were so ahead of our time, lol. But would that be enough for people to remember me by? Perhaps, since a lot of people would undoubtedly dust off the old book just to brush up on names and faces before the big event.
I now have an opportunity to attend my 35th reunion later this summer. Again the BIG question; 'Should I go?' Since the 30th I've reunited with a few classmates via Facebook. Some seem very genuine and we appear to have a lot in common. We are all scattered now over various parts of the U.S. and the state. Should I take the risk of going this time and feeling like a wallflower? Should I take a leap of faith that I could have a wonderful time? Perhaps I should; nothing ventured nothing lost. I'm older and wiser now. I have thicker skin, so my feelings shouldn't be hurt as easily. I have the opportunity to not dwell on the past, but rather take a chance on making some friendships stronger.
What would you do?

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