|My yearbook picture and quote was my name tag, ha ha!
This weekend I attended my high school reunion. No, not my 5th and not my 10th, not even my 15th, My 20 year high school reunion. I hated high school. I made sure to skip the 10th and planned on skipping the 20th. So why attend?
Over the past two years, I became Facebook friends with various girls from school. I can only say that I wish I had gotten to know these girls in high school. Maybe I wouldn't have hated every day as much as I did. Ironically, the few girls who really were my buddies in high school, I didn't keep in touch with. In fact, I'm still searching for Francine. She was a very sweet girl who drove me to SAT prep every week and helped me cheat on my "pre-prom" diet with a couple of late-night trips to the Franklin Square McDonald's.
Most kids can say they weren't popular in school. For me, it wasn't that I wasn't popular, I was virtually unknown. Those who did know of me, knew me as, "That girl with the effed up haircut who wore all black." At the time, I liked it that way.
Saturday night, while awkwardly mingling, I was stopped by a guy whom I remembered as being a very big deal in high school. He was on like every team, had a million friends and was super smart. One of those guys who had "a walk" - he truly had an actual way of swaggering through the halls while guys high-fived him on their way to class.
I'll be honest, he seemed like kind of a prick in high school. I remember someone telling me he was also wild and crazy and kinda mean. I remember this faceless person telling me how it's always the pricks who are on every team and are the most popular. Playing the role of the angry misfit, I agreed.
Saturday night I felt this wave of regret come over me as the popular, smart, sports star dude chatted about school and how he could have done this or should have done that. We spoke about how our lives could have been different or how we could have been better people.
I liked the way he ended that conversation on a really cool positive note ... Something like, if he had done things differently, then he wouldn't have his beautiful kid and amazing wife. In his case everything worked out well in the end. Maybe it was the open bar talking after-all. I reminded him that he also has an awesome job, he laughed and said it wasn't rocket science.
We smiled and parted ways.
As I carefully walked across the dance floor, in heels I'm not used to wearing, I still felt pangs of regret. Although I pretended to agree, saying, "Oh yeah, whatever, man! Life goes on, shit happens! Whatever." I still had a lump in my throat, secretly wishing I had turned out "better" ... I mean, I love my husband and my life is certainly not all that bad. I'm sure I'm not alone. There has to be just one other person that night who felt the way I did. Who knows, maybe I'm the only one who can admit that if I could do it over again, I would. I would have studied harder. I should have applied myself. I could have been more confident. Woulda, shoulda, coulda. What can you do...
One thing I don't regret is attending this reunion. It sort of provided me with closure. Closure with myself. I can't describe it, but I think I'm gonna be okay... I can feel it.