Sunday, January 22, 2006

Reunions: High School Angst All Over Again?


Bornfool http://bornfool.blogspot.com/ wrote about his upcoming high school reunion recently; he was undecided if he would attend. My experience with reunions is that they are immensely rewarding, as well as great fun, especially if you now live away from where you grew up.


I didn't attend my high school reunions until the 20th; various reasons prevented me, but chiefly I was apprehensive about how I would be received/recognized/welcomed. After attending the 20th, I saw that I should not have been scared. Indeed, I wish now that I had gone to all of them (every 5 years). I know that some women agonize over reunions due to the prospect of seeing old flames, but I didn't have that problem, since most of the people I dated were either older than I or went to other schools.

Seeing all your friends at reunions can be great fun. Stories told and retold......."Do you remember the time that....", popular music of the day being played by the DJ, meeting spouses and sometimes children of your long ago schoolmates is a great experience. One of the most fun things is seeing who looks older than you do (but I can almost guarantee they are thinking the same thing about you)! It is also fun to see the very shy school nerd who became the successful real estate entrepreneur, or the football star who also starred in business and is now a millionaire. Or the beauty queen who is now fat and frumpy. When your reunion is coming up, my advice is to "be there with bells on"!

The photo above is my graduating class picture in 2003, at our 45th reunion. If the good Lord's willing and the creeks don't rise (as we say in WV) I will be there in 2008 for the 50th! Our class had 447 people, and we usually get about 175 at the reunions, plus a few spouses. We have lost quite a few over the years, to accidents or illness. It will be interesting to see how many of us appear at the 50th.

35 comments:

Lisa said...

Your post kind of makes me regret that I didn't go to my 20th. I stayed away for the same reasons you listed for being apprehensive. Not all of my high school memories are pleasant, and I just didn't know if I wanted to see any of those people again. If we have a 25th or 30th, maybe I'll hvae to go. :-)

gnumoon said...

I'm going through reunion anxiety myself...10-year high school reunion anxiety, to be specific.

It's in July- I wonder if I can lose 20 pounds, get a fabulous job, and shake all my "leftover teen angst" baggage by then?

Peter said...

Wow 447, big class and still good attendance record at 175.

Jean-Luc Picard said...

My school never had a reunion, which is awful.

I'll take a look at your Frapper. Can you do the same on my Journal? I'd love you to join The Federation (my group map)

ET said...

My class (1960) had the 45th reunion this past October. I didn't go for just about the same reasons you mentioned. I was afraid I wouldn't recognize people I should and them, visa versa - they might not recognize me, and I would think they should. Also,I have changed, I was sort of wild and unpredictable in those days - now I am very quiet and reserved.
I love to run into my old class mates at concerts and things and have a nice one on one conversation, but one on 300 may be different.

PI said...

It's great that they can still kneel. I went once, not many years ago, and there weren't many of us left. Happily the ones I really cared for are still in touch - even one of the teachers.

utenzi said...

Michele sent me to see you, Judy.

I'm the other way around. I got a job near where I grew up in upstate NY after college so I went to my 5 year HS reunion and then drove up there from Atlanta for my 10th year one. However I had to miss the 20th because I was moving here to NC that week and then my 25th due to a new job.

I hope to get to my 30th reunion in 2009!

The Mistress of the Dark said...

I graduation in 1992. I passed on the 10 year reunion and I'll probably pass on all the rest too. There just aren't any people I care to see wandering about a cheap hotel drunk.

The best part is ...most of my 180 classmates can still be found in my area if I look hard enough. I'm not looking though :)

Have a great weekend.

Courtney said...

Unless you're one of those people, like me, who had a very small high school group, was mercilessly bullied by the majority of the kids you graduated with, then they're not so much fun.

Marisa said...

Good morning Kenju. Michele sent me today.

Your post brought back fond memories of my last reunion. This year will be my 15th and I just found out I'm on the list of "lost" alumni so I better fix that to ensure I don't miss out!

srp said...

I don't do reunions personally. Perhaps it is because I never felt a part of my class, more the class ahead of me. That said, my mom and dad have attended their reunions from college and still keep up by newsletter with others they knew. Dad's 50th was in 2000, and Mom's 50th was in 2001, the same year as their 50th wedding anniversary. She would love to go back to Wilmore, Kentucky for her 55th this year. We will see.

poopie said...

It's funny how all class reunion pictures look the same!! We had out 30th here in D'burg two years ago and it was a blast.

srp said...

I don't do the reunion thing. Perhaps it is because I was closer to the class ahead of me than mine. That said, my mom and dad both love to go to their college reunions. Dad's 50th was in 2000 and Mom's was in 2001. She would like to go back this year for the 55th.

margalit said...

I went to my 25th and it was the worst experience. I went to HS in los angeles and a couple of the people in our class have made it VERY big (one is a household name) and everyone crowded around those two like sychophants and the rest of us were chopped liver. All people talked about was $$ and what kind of cars they drove. Ugh. Never again.

Michele sent me.

mar said...

Americans are so good about the reunions. I went to my 10th, 20th and 25th in the US. Missed last year's 30th because I had been visiting shortly before then. But I will be there in 2010! (maybe there should be a blogger reunion as well!)

Dawn said...

soundlike fun...I got my GED so no school reunions for me....I wish I coul dgo back in time and change things but I am glad that you got to enjoy this.

Michele sent me

d.challener roe said...

I doubt I'll ever attend a reunion. I was not popular in high school...in any circles.

Here via Michele's

Dawn said...

sounds like you had a great time...I missed out on all of that..I got my GED so no reunions for me ;(

Michele sent me

Jamie Dawn said...

I think that is super! I just received an alumni email from my high school this past week. They are putting together an alumi newsletter and want pics and details about us to share with everyone. I look forward to sharing about my family and learning about others' lives too.

WordWhiz said...

I loved my 20th reunion, but then my class lost all motivation and we never had another. My 25th should have been in 2004. The year just passed quietly by. Oh well...

Miss Cellania said...

I wasn't even invited to my 20th, or 25th, even though everyone knows where to find me! Hmm, maybe thats a hint? We'll see about the 30th this summer.

And I LOVE the quote you have in the header!

Dave said...

I'm still in touch with my school and still have friends that I met in Sept 67 when we started!
Here from Michele's this evening.

Robin said...

I'm covering all of my bases, So I am here from Michele's! Howdy!

SinisterBaby said...

Hullo,

I went to an all male De La Salle College.

The last thing I *ever* want to do is see the bunch of jerks and fools I spent my school years with.

Some of the gruesome bunch were boaders, or "boadrats" who hailed from out west. Dumb as horses and mean.

I notice comment moderation is on. What I've written is the truth and I hope it doesn't offend. Wonderful site you have.



Robbie :-)

Jessica said...

I''ve got a few years to look forward to before my first reunion. So many girls got knocked up at my school I'm afraid I'll be the only one there without a teenager!

Here via Michele!

vicki said...

I love this post! And the picture, too. I admire people who go to their reunions and I like hearing that you really enjoy yours. I'm embarrassed to say I made such a mad dash to get through high school and out into the world that I didn't cement many friendships. REcently I signed up for that classmates website and it's surprising how many names I recognize when I didn't think I even knew anybody. And how many people look at my profile.

I have yet to take the step of e-mailing anybody but maybe...after reading this post. Who knows? My mom went to her 60th about 5 years ago and had a blast.

OldHorsetailSnake said...

We had 147 in our class of 1948. Our last reunion was in 2003, and there won't be another since we are down to about 20 survivors and we have told all the "do you remember" stories 55 times.

Jennifer said...

I had a great experience at my 20th a couple of years back, after months of hand wringing indecision about attending. But it did solidify all those reasons that I couldn't wait to get out of those halls of horror way back when, too.

I'll go to my 25th this summer, although I may leave my bells at home. LOL

Sonia said...

Sounds like you had a lovely time!
I never went to reunions like this one. And I think this is a little challenger! "Seeing who looks older than you do", for me is a little scary! (LOL)

Marcia said...

I can't wait to go to my high school reunion. My 10th is in 3 years, and I haven't seen a lot of people since then, but I've done a lot with my life. I want to see what everyone else has done (and if I'm doing better than them!).

Michele...

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

Haven't been on much today..Well, yesterday where you are, now...so I missed this one...
I never went to any of mi High Scholl reunions till just one. And some of it was okay and interesting and in one case quite emotional..(An OLd Boyfriend...we both cried...!) BUT, I felt just like I did back in High School and I didn'tlike that feeling at all...I never felt like I fit in, and it's because I didn't! Oh I had plenty of friends, but I STILL felt like an outsider..and again, like I just did not belong...

One person their made a point of saying to me that she always thought I was the most interesting person in High School..I was shocked and surprised...and I said I couldn't believe that and I asked her why, and she said; "Cause you weren't like anybody else in our class".

I rest my case! (lol)

Carmi said...

Our 10th high school reunion was such a disaster - badly planned, underfunded, underattended, etc. - that it has cast a pall over all future events. Essentially, the class agreed to never again hold one.

We always were known as the apathetic ones. I guess it stuck.

Funny, but the folks from high school who matter have remained close. Everyone else....not so much, and I don't feel compelled to find out.

It was a small school (graduating class of 54 students) and I didn't much enjoy my time there.

Thankfully, I enjoyed the subsequent chapters of my educational life so much more.

Gerbera Daisy said...

I always love to go back and see old friends and reminisce. My advice is the same...be there!!

bornfool said...

Nice post, Judy. I'm still thinking about it.

Green-Eyed Lady(GEL) said...

Yes, I'm with you and say "GO!". My reunion experiences could be a blog...