I didn't bother going to the 5 year reunion because I felt like I had just left high school. I didn't go to the 10 year reunion because I was getting married a week after the event in a completely different state. I don't think I have an excuse for the 15 year reunion. And why would I want to avoid it anyway?
My mom has said that by the time you hit your 25th reunion and over, you are just happy to see each other alive and happy. And I think with the 15th, you are finally pretty set in who you are, what your priorities are, and at least a little more secure about yourself than you were on Graduation Day. But right now I'm in a bit of a whirlwind professionally and personally, and my old hometown loves to gossip. So I know by going back I'll have to have a full-on ready explanation of where the hell I've been, what I'm doing, and how my family is. With a town in Ohio with only 6000 people, and a graduation class of 64, there is no avoiding the how is your family hoo-ha. Luckily, I think Facebook has helped me with the transition. But still, do I look better than I did in high school? I certainly feel better.
When I graduated, my parents were divorcing, they put the big house up for sale, and I was quickly running off to Syracuse University and then abroad to London. Yep, I ran. I won't deny it. And I studied my fanny off. I pretty much cut myself off from a lot of my old friends that I had known since Kindergarten. And I haven't talked to them since... except for a few on Facebook.
Now it's been 15 years, and I have a graduate degree from the University of Chicago and work for the Smithsonian. I work at a place where I see guards with guns, and some with very large guns, on a daily basis. Just last week, I was dealing with an emergency at the Holocaust Museum and hoping none of the students in my program were hurt. On a good day, I am summoned to a Castle. On a bad day, I'm dealing with lawyers. My mom has ALS, my brother is in the military, and I'm married with a kid. I have a lot on my plate right now and manage to still get through the day.
But for some reason, when I think about going back to a high school reunion, I am struck with a certain nervousness that can only be experienced by a neurotic, low self-esteemed 17 year old. And the first thing I think is, "What am I going to wear?" I haven't even talked to my husband about making the trek back to Ohio to actually go to this reunion and I'm already wondering if my butt will look big when I get there. I'm sure this will not be last blog entry about this event.
Oh, Ohio.... when I think of you... I think of this version of this song...
I need a drink.
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