Next weekend is my 30th high school reunion, and of course this little event is stiring up a host of emotions. I haven’t attended a a reunion yet and to say that I’m nervous is a minor understatement. I have a love-hate relationship with my memories from high school. I was on the fringe – I wasn’t athletic or super popular or super smart or a loaner, I just didn’t really fit in. I remember just wanting to escape, escape from my home and from the tiny community that sprouted in the middle of nowhere. I wanted to be on my own, starting my new life at college, and in fact, I chose my college partially because almost no-one from my home town was going there. When I graduated from high school, I did just that – I escaped, only coming home for the mandatory holidays. I lost touch with my friends and started anew.
As the years went by, if I’m being honest, I didn’t really think of high school. I made great friends at UCSD, and had a fantastic community of post-college friends in LA that filled any hole I may have had. I through myself into work and when the 10 year came along, I was out of the country on business. Same thing for my 20th, but by then I had also started my journey with depression too although at that time, it was pretty well managed (or at least that’s what I thought.). But something also happened that year, I ran into a friend from elementary school while shopping in San Diego and that little run-in has lead to reconnecting with a small group of high school friends and we see each other a several times a year. I’m comfortable with these guys, but that has happened over time and wasn’t immediate.
Enter the 30th – first, I guess there’s the Facebook situation. I’ve connected with a lot of classmates over social media and I’m pretty real when it comes to what I post and share. But Facebook and real life are two completely different things. But next week over 100 of these long lost classmates will all be together and I’m more than a little nervous. I’m not dreading it, but I’m nervous since this will be the first time in literal decades that I’ll be seeing some of these people. Will they be holding onto old memories or opinions from 1987? Will it be comfortable? Will I make a fool of myself? I was voted “Most Confident” back then which I interpreted as a nice way of saying “Biggest Bitch” and I can’t seem to shake the concern that that is what people thought of me — that is the lingering fear that I’m holding on to. I’ve also been helping to plan the event which brings up a whole different set of concerns – will people be happy with it? will they have a good time? I know these things are out of my control, but it still weighs heavy on me in these days leading up to the event.
I know the next week is going to be super busy with last minute prep work, and I’m glad for that. I’m hoping that that will help to ease some of my nerves and concerns. And there is a part of me (albeit, a smaller part) that is excited to see everyone and to really connect in real life vs. virtual land of social media. I’m going to try to be in the moment, practicing some meditation to help ease my concerns and after that – just take it as it comes. In the end, that’s really all I can do anyways, right?