Sunday, November 25, 2012
Last night I attended my 30-year high school reunion. 30 years? You're kidding, right? How and when did we get so old? I remember back in 1982 when we were getting ready to graduate, we talked about what our 5-year reunion would be like. When the time came I remember how stressed I was and how broke I went buying the perfect outfit and make-up. I was still single and was looking to impress. I had to prove I was successful! After just 5 years, we were barely out of college. None of us had even made a slight mark on the world. There's always a few exceptions but largely we were fairly unimpressive after 5 years. We talked about what we would all be like when we celebrated 10, 20, 30 years . That seemed like light-years away, yet here we were... 30 years in a blink of an eye.
Subsequently, I attended my 10th, 20th, 25th and now my 30 year reunion. Over time the stress of attending these reunions turned into excitement at seeing old familiar faces. After 30 years, those beautiful familiar faces were shining ever bright, with just a few more wrinkles, a few more grays, a few extra pounds around the mid-section. People were in so many different stages in their lives. Some of us were already grandparents. Some were dealing with their empty nest for the first time. Some of us late bloomers are part of the sandwich generation, taking care of elderly parents and young children. Some were dealing with divorce, some had already started new lives after discovering second chances.
High school is never an easy time to navigate the awkward teenage years. So much heartbreak, so much teenage angst, so much lack of confidence. But I have not minded getting older... in fact, I love the woman I have become despite my many warts. I often recall my years of insecurity as a teenager, and I am so glad for the mature woman I have become. I have a loving husband, amazing children, a successful career, great friends and family. I think many of my classmates realize the same thing about getting older. Now that we are mid way through our lives, and then some, we take stock in that we've lost 11 members in a class of 250. Life is too short. I, for one, am grateful for every day. The only person to impress now is me!
After several hours of rewinding 30 years, promises to "see each other soon" and keep in touch, I realize I felt good being with many of those people. We all made each other feel special. I was able to walk with confidence, with my head held high, and with the reassurance that I am working on creating the best me.
I had a great night managing my food. I made very healthy choices and had one glass of wine. Besides, who had time to eat when we're so busy catching up with one another?
It was a great night with great people. I look forward to our 40th!