My high school reunion was last weekend. I went to a small college town school in Western NY, so I knew I would know the people who would be there, and I love to travel and visit my family. (eliminating two common reasons/excuses for not attending a reunion). I wish I could share some big drama that happened (old flames disappearing into a back room, a prom queen crying into her tenth drink, the geek going all “revenge of the nerds” on the jock, etc.) but my reunion didn’t end up being Grosse Pointe Blank or Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion. In fact, it was pretty relaxed and low-key and not nearly as awkward as it could have been. We had big laughs reminiscing about old times, without ending up wallowing in nostalgia.
Although the weekend wasn’t as weird or as anxiety-ridden as I thought it would be, I will say that Facebook has definitely changed the relational dynamic of a reunion...
But Facebook-created oddities aside, I’d say that my reunion was a lot more enjoyable than I anticipated. There wasn’t any one-upsmanship or pretentiousness, and for the most part, we were able to strike a good balance between being true to who we are now and falling easily into our old ways of interacting with each other. And over the course of the weekend, I realized that if you expect others to give you the space to be who you are now, and to accept that you’ve changed a lot, or a little, or not at all, from who you were at 18, then you need to give them the same space and acceptance.
Now I’m interested to see how the 20-year reunion compares to the 10-year. I imagine the differences closely relate to the difference between being 38 and 28. The funny thing about being 28, I think, is that while for the most part we’re a lot more comfortable in our own skins than we were at 18, we can still fit pretty easily into our old high school insecurities. Although the jeans might be a different story. So until our 20-year reunion rolls around (sooner than any of us would like) here’s to another great decade, my fellow members of the Class of 2002!