Wednesday, October 08, 2003

It was the best of times. It was the worst of times. It was my 10 year high school reunion and it was nothing like Romy and Michele's. The first night I went to the Welcome Back cocktail hour at the Park Cities Hilton. The room was small and crowded with tables. The turnout was better than expected so people were shoulder to shoulder trying to talk and fight their way to the bar. The women all looked pretty much the same. The men were unrecognizable. A little heavier. A little less hair. A little more mature. I guess the most surprising thing was how little everyone's personality had changed. I tried to mingle and talk but I felt awkward and pushed to the outskirts of the room. I've never been good at small talk so I just didn't know what to say to people. I realized that they didn't know me in high school and didn't know me now. No one was particular curious about me. It was like I still didn't exist.
People were friendly enough but it was just awkward. I ended up leaving because it was just too crowded.

Saturday I headed back to school for a picnic/tour of the school. Only the front part of the school was familiar. I got lost. It is so much bigger. The old girls' gym is now a hugh cafeteria. Most of the lights were turned off and no one was really giving a tour. It was more like wandering around by yourself. The group at the picnic was basically families with babies. Two of my classmates walked by pushing strollers. They were very nice. The babies weren't more than a few months old and already the girls were back to their tiny trim figures. I felt awkward again. Overweight. Husbandless. Childless. I had to leave.

The big event was at Eddie Deen's Ranch, a tourist version of Texas. It was like having your reunion in a barn with cowboys pouring your drinks. The turnout wasn't great. More awkwardness. I just didn't feel right. I felt like an outcast again. No one was rude. Everyone was nice and polite but there was no real depth of feeling because no one knew me or missed me or was curious about me. I mostly filled people in about Brad and Maya and Jennifer.

I didn't fit in in high school and I still don't. I think Brad would have had a great time because he has changed so much. People would have been curious about him. They would have loved talking to him and finding out what he is doing. And he is great at conversation. Maya would have had fun because she is so fun and outgoing and pretty. People were also curious about her. She would have loved catching up with people and hanging out and drinking. Jennifer would have had fun because she always fit in. She is pretty and outgoing and really at ease with people. Everyone would have been happy to see her again.

I think having to face everyone with no friends, no weight loss, no fabulous career, no boyfriend....was really difficult. Maybe if I hadn't had to do it alone I would have had a better time. Maybe if the people i had most wanted to see had shown up, I would have had a better time. But I just still feel out of place among all those people. I doubt I'll ever be comfortable in that environment. I'm just not an outgoing person. Some things never change. And some people never change. Maybe I just wanted those people to see something in me that they didn't ten years ago. The things that my close friends see in me. I'd like for others to see that. But sometimes it's hard to get it out there in the open. But as long as the people I care about can see those things, I think I'll be all right.

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