Hundreds of movies have been made about the in crowd, the nerds, and the mean girls. John Hughes made millions showcasing Molly Ringwald in such classics as Sixteen Candles, Pretty in Pink, and my personal favorite, The Breakfast Club.
It was anything but.
I never exactly felt like I fit in. I know, big shocker right, a teenager who felt out-of-place. I didn’t play sports or run the student government. My activities included Key Club, yearbook staff (I still have nightmares about missed deadlines), and an academic program called Upward Bound. To state the obvious, I was not cool.
When I thought it would be funny to get on the Homecoming Court ballot, the reaction from my peers was cruel with comments ranging from “How did you get nominated?” and “Don’t count on my vote.” Needless to say, I wasn’t crowned princess and though I put up an I-don’t-give-a-rat’s-ass-about-it, I was hurt that people didn’t like me enough to vote for me and that something I had thought meant so little, truly meant more to me than I realized.
When I moved away to attend college, I didn’t look back. I was eager to get away from the town that was too small for my dreams and people who never cared for me in the first place. It was time to start new and begin to grow into the person I was destined to be. I bid my teachers and friends adieu and got the heck out of there the minute the band finished playing “Pomp and Circumstance.” In fact, it might have been before the song ended.
It has been over nine years since I have graduated from high school. Nine years since I danced at prom, walked the line at commencement, signed a yearbook, and given thanks for every day that has passed that doesn’t involve me racing up a hill to get to chemistry class. To say I’ve moved on from the small school in the small town is an understatement.
And then Facebook brought everything back.
A few days ago, I was invited to my high school’s Class of 2003 group. With a year before our tenth anniversary of finishing up with school, planning for the reunion is already underway and dozens of former classmates were excitedly talking about venues and fundraisers to make the party one to remember.
I refrained from adding my input.
I have never considered going to an event to see a bunch of people I chose not to stay in contact with. Sure, there are some I actually would like to have a “what have you been up to?” chat, but for the most part, no thank you. I’ve always looked forward in my life. The past is the past and while there are some events that I have dwelled on, for the most part, I don’t look back.
Don’t get me wrong, I love looking through my yearbooks—after all, I spent many hours working on them—and remembering good times, but I don’t need to spend a whole evening recalling Mrs. B’s marker funerals, Mr. H’s transition into Roberta before his eventual retirement, or affairs of members of my graduating class and a certain faculty member—all true, might I add. There’s a difference between dipping a toe in the past and jumping headfirst into your memories. Besides, Facebook makes it really easy to check up on anyone from the past and see what their lives have become.
Am I just being an old fuddy duddy?
To anyone out there who has attended a reunion, how did it go? And if anyone skipped it, did you regret it? I would love to hear your stories. As for my tenth reunion, I still have a year to decide, but at this stage in the game, I think I’ll be sitting this one out.
Besides, there’s always the twentieth.