God, suck an egg already, NaBloPoMo. Three more days and we can end this charade.
I discovered Monday morning that I missed my 10-year high school reunion this past weekend, an event about which I’d managed to forget more times since its announcement than is perhaps entirely healthy. I’d toyed with the idea of attending once or twice before my Cinderella job offer made the decision for me, thank jeebus, and honestly, I’m a little surprised that I don’t feel even the slightest twinge of regret at having not gone.
When I was little, I was really into those “choose your own adventure” books, but I’d never actually just play them; I’d read until I got to a crossroad, then stick my finger between the pages so I could go back and explore the other path after seeing what the one I picked first had in store, because I hate missing anything. Ever. I want to be all of the places, all of the time. I want only “and,” never “or.” So midway through reading the book, I’d have, like, all my fingers wedged between a bunch of different sections, desperate not to be stuck with the wrong decision, and ultimately I wouldn’t get much of a cohesive or satisfying story out of the endeavor, being too busy trying to experience everything to fully appreciate anything. Anyway, the point is, this is kind of a habit that’s carried over into my adult life, in that even if I don’t always go nuts trying to be everywhere, I am constantly fretting over the idea of missing out. Of having made the wrong choice. Of opportunity lost.
So it’s significant that I don’t care that I wasn’t there this weekend. Look, a lot of people like to go on and on about the hell-scape that is high school, and yeah, I don’t look back and go “man, wasn’t that just a frolic through a field of clover,” but I don’t have any active animosity towards that chapter of my life. When I got my reunion invite, there was no grand “fuck you” gesture of refusal made out of some need to avenge my teenage self. High school was high school. I made a handful of friends to whom I’ll be close forever. I had some uber-great days and some spectacularly bad days. I managed to have a lot fun whenever I allowed myself to emerge from the miasma of my mostly-imagined angst. I spent a lot of my time there being very lost, and ten years later I’m still pretty lost, though in different ways. Overall, the combination of time and my hilariously (terrifyingly?) bad memory have turned my teen years into a watercolor blur, and I am more than fine with that. Turns out high school just…wasn’t all that important in the overall “Heather Learns to Be a Human” narrative; at least not important enough to warrant some big “OMG REMEMBER WHEN” shebang.
The past four years of my life have been far more significant to my development into an almost-functional adult than high school ever was. Because of strides made in the past year-and-a-half alone, I spent my Saturday night getting paid to do what I love best. I want to go to my ten-year reunion for this; for this time of real, honest-to-god possibility. I can’t wait to see where these people will be in a decade. I can’t wait to see where I’ll be.
As for the old SMHS class of aught-two…maybe give me a ring for the twentieth, when everyone’s been mellowed out a little by time and divorces and kids and changing metabolisms and mid-life crises and the abandonment of all that obnoxious youthful idealism. We’ll have a drink, and toast to Mr. Bonell’s endless array of bow-ties.