High School Class Reunion
A few months ago, I wrote an article about my pending 60th high school class reunion, sharing with readers my reservations about my intent to attend.
The article portrayed the reality of the high school chapter of my life. I was assuredly never a part of the cliques; the term “misfit” (or perhaps dweeb) was far more appropriate and even though a whole new wonderful world awaited after graduation, and even though I have lived a lovely life for the past 60 years, the demons had taken up residence in my head, successfully assuring me I would still not fit in. And the fact that I was struggling with this made me feel ridiculously immature. I concluded that other article with a pledge to report back after the reunion was over, which is what I am doing here.
I was surprised to learn from so many people that my feelings of teenage angst and inadequacy were not unique; other people shared them. In fact, some had determined to never attend a reunion! That was both reassuring (misery loves company, even 60 years hence) and distressing; was I making a mistake to go? But plans were in place and reservations had been made so off we went to Bend, Oregon where I was born and raised but hadn’t visited in a very long time. I fought off periodic feelings of anxiety by reminding myself that even if the reunion was a disappointment, it would be good to reacquaint myself with the town.
I also regularly reminded myself that my appearance was not at all important and I concentrated on the words I had always tried to impart to our children: “How you look is not significant, it’s how you feel that matters!” I was doing well with that concept until two days before the event when I woke up with a huge red pimple right in the middle of my nose!
We arrived in Bend after a few days on the Oregon Coast where I basked in the magnificent ocean views and tried to purge that pimple, feeling very shallow that it mattered.
The reunion had been well planned; a happy hour get-together on Friday night, a picnic on Saturday, a dinner on Saturday night. And on Sunday morning, the few classmates who had also attended the small Catholic grade school for eight years were to meet for breakfast in that former school building, now a popular restaurant.