On Not Going to My 10-Year Reunion


My 10-year high school reunion is (semi-officially) this weekend. I’m honestly shocked it’s happening at all, and was the result of a last-minute effort on Facebook by a former classmate I have absolutely no recollection of.

Anyway, I’m not going.

Three main reasons:

One, this weekend also happens to be my and Husband’s first anniversary, and I don’t feel like spending that with a bunch of people from high school.

Two, flights are expensive, yo. Then, assuming we stay at my mom and dad’s, there’s the whole “how would we get to the city and back” (the venue is in SF) thing. Actually, I probably could’ve convinced my parents to drive us and hang out on their own somewhere while I…reunite.

And three, my best friend (read: the ONLY person from my class of 460 I’ve actively kept in touch with) isn’t going. She’s on a cruise in Europe with her grandma, that lucky bitch.

(Am I also reluctant to go because I’m not as “successful” as I thought I would be or feel like I should be? A little. But we’re focusing on the reasons above.)

Instead, I will be spending Saturday hiking and singing loudly and badly at the Blake Shelton concert, and Sunday watching the Niners-Cowboys game (and then trying to stay married for 366 days…).

But I was feeling all nostalgic for some reason, so I pulled out my old yearbooks and some high school-era photos and came up with 10 thoughts/reflections to mark the occasion. (Or I was looking for blog post fodder. You decide.) (At least I didn’t go so far as to pull out my journals from high school. Yikes.)

10 Reflections 10 Years After Graduating High School

01 | Joining cross-country and yearbrook were two of the best decisions I made.
About 85% of my fondest memories are from those two groups. I even wish I had joined Yearbook earlier, instead of waiting until senior year.

02 | I totally do not regret skipping Senior Ball.
We had Junior Prom and Senior Ball, because one super expensive formal dance just isn’t enough. I went to Junior Prom and realized it was literally just another high school dance, only it wasn’t in the gym and came with way too much stress and planning and costs. After that, I was not excited at all for Senior Ball and since the guy I would’ve wanted to go with had a girlfriend, or at least another date, I was and am not bummed about skipping it.

03 | I am so glad I didn’t go out with the boy I had a crush on for most of junior and senior year.
I think it started towards the end of the sophomore year, actually. He was on the cross country and track teams. I thought he was sooooo cute. He might’ve even liked me back, at some point. But we never went out. We became friends though, pretty good friends, despite all the teenage angsty stuff we were both going through. While I go back and forth wondering if I would’ve been better off going on dates and having a boyfriend in high school, obviously my love life worked out, so at least when it comes to this, I’m grateful.

04 | I wish I had been more grateful for what I had.
I wasted so much time wishing my friends and I were cooler, that we did different things when we hung out, that I had the kind of friends you see on TV or in movies. And I missed out on maybe making way better connections with those girls who were, of course, pretty damn awesome, and absolutely did not need to conform to the stupid standards and ideals I had in my head.

05 | I wish I had taken more photos.
Like I said, I dug out some boxes and photo albums earlier. There weren’t really too many of me in high school. I was really insecure about my looks and spent most of those years avoiding being in front of the camera as much as possible. That was stupid. (Also, this was obviously before Facebook so maybe people have pics of me I don’t even know about and never will. Le sigh.)

06 | Some things never change.
The Ataris, Something Corporate, Third Eye Blind, Goo Goo Dolls, Dave Matthews Band, Counting Crows, Jimmy Eat World, old-school Britney? Dancing all night with friends? Driving around just for fun and because we have nowhere else to go? Still fucking awesome.

07 | Some things do.
Writing awful, angsty poetry, bragging about not sleeping (instead of complaining), thinking my parents are soooo lame? Over.

08 | The coolest people in high school were the ones who knew who they were and did their thing.
i.e., definitely not me. Whether they were popular or nerds or somewhere in between, looking back now, the people who were just happy with whoever they were — those were the ones I should’ve admired the most. Or, really, I should’ve been like them — just me, and cool with that. Instead I spent so much time trying to be different, smarter, wittier, more outgoing, more fashionable, prettier, someone I’d never be. And that was what caused a lot of my stupid teenage angst.

09 | “This too shall pass” is some of the truest shit ever.
I can barely remember most of the stuff I was so freaked out and having breakdowns over in high school. I remember two of the dumbest mistakes I ever made, I remember my “most embarrassing moment” (when I almost made my car stall as I drove past a bunch of guys from school, including the aforementioned crush), I remember crying right before junior year started because my brother was going to be a freshman and I was convinced he would be cooler and do high school “better” than me (he was and did. It didn’t matter). I remember how upset I was at not living up to my goals in track and cross-country senior year. That’s…about it.

10 | I am so not Mission anymore.
It’s weird looking at my yearbooks, because obviously my high school played a big part in who I am today. But looking at the photos, reading the little articles (realizing that writing some of those was my first experience writing “copy,” sort of)…my actual memories of those events are fuzzy. I looked at pictures of people I used to see every day and I barely recognized them. I read articles about senior trips and football games that I went to and wrote about, and I feel almost no connection to them. All this stuff that was such a huge part of my identity just…isn’t anymore.

If you read all that, you’re a saint. Seriously. If I had a prize I’d tell you email it to me and I’d send it to you. But I don’t (sorry), so you can just leave a comment instead and I’ll respond with something grateful and heartfelt.