An invitation to a school reunion arrived in my inbox this week. A bit of a shocker, I can tell you. Well, it’s more than 20 years since I left school and I’ve not seen the majority of my classmates since walking out of the gates after my final exam all those years ago.
Ooph way too many years have passed. So when I got the invitation I was filled with curiosity combined with more than a smidgen of fear. It’s a pretty scary thought sharing the same room again with those I spent my growing years.
Before I could even think it through though, I noticed my face gracing the pages of a reunion group on Facebook. Suddenly my past was flashing before my eyes as old school photos were posted online on an almost hourly basis. Former classmates, who I barely remembered, let alone recognised, swapped memories of days gone by, recalling teachers, fellow classmates and tales of school trips.
It was so strange to be reminded of times gone by with the regular updates and get messages from people I’d not seen for such a long time. It was addictive as I spent my online time deciphering names and squinting hard at blurred photos as I tried to work out who was who. I decoded surnames, translating married names to maiden names, and calculated how they were all linked. As for the boys, I barely recognised some of them as I tried to work out what they might have looked like when younger – with hair. (Sorry guys but time hasn’t been as kind to you as it has us girls.)
Some I only recognised by looking at pictures of their children and, would you believe, grandkids?! Grandkids!! *Wince*. How old am I feeling now?! Who are all these middle-aged people of which I am now one? A quick glance at the date of the reunion and my first thought was whether I’d have time to get match ready. Is it possible to drop a dress size in time? Can I get my life in order? Wow, there really is nothing like a reunion to focus the mind on how time has passed.
Since getting the invitation I have wondered how all our lives have changed and what classmates have become. However, philosophical I am about my own life – and I’m pretty happy with my lot actually – I can’t help wondering how successful my former classmates have been.
“I’ll go if you go,” said one friend, worried about how much she had changed since school despite the fact she has a lovely family and thriving career. Another classmate, now with a high profile job and well respected in her field of work, said she’d go but only if she could lose some weight first. Haha! So it’s not just me that’s been sent into this massive vortex of insecurity! It seems we’re all a little nervous about the prospect of coming face to face with former friends and adversaries. It’s like all those years have miraculously slipped away and we’re reverting to our former teenage selves. We’re all still measuring ourselves up against each other.
So, the jury is still out as to whether I’ll go. I’m not sure how I feel about spending time with people I’ve not seen for such a long time and whether I really want to take a step into nostalgia. Really, what do we have in common other than we all set out into the world at the same time? After that we all went our separate lives, scattered around the world and did our own thing. OK, so maybe I am a teeny, weeny bit curious. Just a little. Maybe I will go. Well, I guess I do have some time to slim down a little.