Wednesday, 19 August 2015

High School Reunion Edition

I’m going to my high school reunion this weekend.

It’s been 28 years since I graduated. Considering I was 17 when that happened, when you include my undergrad and graduate studies I’ve still easily spent more time out of school then in it.

But I can’t wait to go back. I have such a pull back to my hometown. Many of these people I haven’t seen for over 20 years. Even now, why do I feel like I know them so well? Why will the stories we tell continue to be so funny? Why will be tease the same people about the same things?

These school age roots must go down pretty deep.

I think one of the reasons was that I went to a really small private school for those years. We knew each other inside and out. We noticed when people got a haircut or a black eye or broke up with someone. It was big news. Because it was all the news we had.

A couple of times a year we would travel to a competitive “convention” in a different province or state. I still remember how the bathroom smelled at a church we stayed at in Saskatoon. I remember Shirley getting mad at me for talking about some encouragement notes from her mom in her suitcase that were meant for her sisters.  I remember some of the questions our “Reach for the Top” team had. I remember each inconvenient time I got my period.

How can this be? I don’t even remember what I had for supper last night.

Not everyone loved our school. It was very conservative and full of rules. For me half of the fun was seeing how many rules I could break without getting caught. We weren’t allowed any “non-Christian” music at school, and one day I had an Abba tape in my gym bag. One of the older girls took it to our principal who in turn called my dad. My dad told our principal (who I do love) that Abba was a great group and I was more than welcome to listen to them.  Go Dad.

Some people won’t come out this weekend because they are still hurt from the effects of that sometime harsh environment. I understand that. We will miss them.

There are those who we went to school with that won’t be coming this weekend because they aren’t with us anymore. Cancer takes its toll on the just and the unjust. We grieve and remember them.

There are those that I am scared to death might show up. They hurt and humiliated me. But I don’t think I was the only one they hurt and humiliated. I’m hoping they didn’t get an invitation.

As for now, I wonder what I’m going to wear. I’m thankful that my mom is making potato salad so I don’t have to cart an appetizer three provinces over. I wonder what people are going to look like. I don’t think I’ve aged that well, hopefully the same holds true for everyone else. J

I’m counting the hours until I hear the same stories retold. People holding hands under blankets on the bus, Kim always being late for school even though she only lived 10 feet away, Mr. Weslake’s eye exercises.

The stories make us who we are.

And we are great.

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