Reunited And It Feels So Meh?
Reunited And It Feels So Meh?
Adrienne BoettingerWednesday,20 May 2015
I just had my high school reunion. Or at least I think I did. Maybe it wasn’t real because I didn’t end up being helicoptered out of the venue by a nerd-turned-billionaire or finding out my high school boyfriend was an assassin. So I’m not sure if this reunion really counts. Granted, I went to an all-girl school but still, no one attempted to murder me and there was no poignant moment when me and my best friend did an interpretive dance to a Cyndi Lauper song (Amy and Mary, let’s work on that for next time).
This was my 20th reunion though and most movies with decent roles for women focus on the 10th because as we all know, once women pass the age of 35 we become completely uninteresting to the male half of the population. Maybe that’s why none of those exciting things happened at my reunion. I think my 10th reunion was slightly more intriguing but I can’t be sure as I drank all my feelings that night.
Or let’s blame Facebook. Ever since Facebook made it easy to keep in touch with every person you’ve ever met in your entire lives, a lot of the mystery goes out of reunions. If you’ve drastically altered your appearance, odds are your “friends” have already seen the pics. If you’ve had a baby, gotten a promotion, divorced, found a new talent, or discovered you were meant for an entirely different life than the one you’re currently leading, you’ve probably shared all the details in status updates and revealing posts.
Thankfully, this past reunion was pretty chill. Facebook may have taken some of the excitement out of reconnecting with old friends and frenemies alike but it also cuts down on the amount of terribly intrusive questions asked by people who probably don’t want to reduce you to emotional gelatin — but that’s what ends up happening anyway. We’ve already seen who has split up with her significant other, found a new one, still hasn’t found one, taken a new job, gone on a life-changing trip, or suffered a terrible tragedy.
That leaves us free to just hang, have a few drinks and share some memories. Reunions are a time to laugh and commune with our past. Reunions are best enjoyed when we’re not expecting something significant and life-changing to happen — when we’re not out to show up our former classmates but just to see them, shake our heads at how we got to be this old and remember the time we walked out on Year Day to protest losing the competition, or when our bra came undone in Mr. Jones’ Physics Class, or when we had to cover up an accidental fire during the National Honor Society induction, or when we played a series of bizarre April Fool’s Day jokes on our inscrutable Calculus teacher.
We share a history with our former classmates — a history that has become part of who we are, that shapes our views of things large and small, and makes our lives richer for having. Reunions are milestones that mark the passage of time and allow us time to look back and smile with actual human beings and not just their online personas. So even though I didn’t become a gazillionaire or discover my new purpose in life, I’m profoundly grateful for the opportunity to catch up with those lovely, weird, headstrong ladies. And of course the opportunity to drink way more cocktails than was appropriate.