20 years come and gone

I'm headed home for my high school reunion in just a few weeks. It's been 20 years since I walked the halls of St. Joseph High School in South Bend, Ind. Isn't it weird to think 1994 was that long ago? Bill Clinton was still a new president, there was a little ice skating drama between Nancy Kerrigan and Tonya Harding, OJ Simpson took flight in a Ford Bronco on national television and a teenage mother in Canada just about our age gave birth to an unknown baby named Justin Bieber.

I officially feel OLD. When I told someone the other day that I was going to go, she said, "oh I'm sorry!"
My freshman photo, 1990
I've heard many people admit they go back to check everyone out, to see who's successful now, who's bald, or to see who has lived up to those senior predictions we published in the school newsletter. I was voted "Most Likely to be on Geraldo's Mudwrestling Special" so I have already failed them in one aspect.
I'm guessing it's safe to say there are quite a few people who either dread attending reunions or avoid them all together. I'm not sure where I fall here.

While I've always been an extrovert socially (read: loud), I admit I didn't have all that many friends in high school, (when I was a freshman I was angry at my parents for sending me to St. Joe when all my friends from grade school were going to a different school, so I never got over it). I keep in touch with a few people and reconnected with some at our 10-year-reunion, but otherwise, I don't really keep up with the majority of my classmates.
Thank God the jeans weren't pegged

I hate to disappoint anyone, but I feel like I'm pretty much where I thought I'd be now, even way back when, at age 18, when I would only dream of where I'd end up in life. I knew I wanted to be a writer, I knew I wanted to have a family and I had always thought Kentucky was pretty, so here I am with at least those three check marks in life.
I looked on the back of one classmate's school picture he exchanged with me, on which he scribbled that he'd bet someday I'd be "living in Australia with 10 kids."
Well, let's see, I am married to a guy who spent a year living in Australia and we have almost half that many kids, so does that count?
I think the biggest part of me (maybe a big part of all of us) wants to go back to see those people who knew us before we were really us --before we were thrown out into the world, into the work world, the world of hardship and mortgages and debt, the world of tough marriages and for many, the world of parenthood.

Twenty years ago we were young, naive, unassuming, maybe wonderfully nonjudgemental and uncorrupted by whatever the world has since thrown at us. It's like getting to step back in time for a couple hours. It could be fun, or it could be uncomfortable. I don't know. But hey, I'm 38 and I guess I just don't care. I'm just glad noboby expects me to jump in a pool of mud and take someone down.


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