One might think that, in order to plan and host your 15 year high school reunion, you'd have to fall into one of two categories in order to want to tackle such an undertaking:
1. Formerly mega-popular high school class president/cheerleader/prom queen
2. Formerly not mega-popular high school class president/cheerleader/prom queen, but now ridiculously successful and fabulous.
If so, one would be wrong. Case in point? I planned our 15 year high school reunion.
Yeah, that's right, me.
Who was I in high school? Basically no one... I'm pretty sure the invisible people don't get elected prom queen or class president... and really? I had all the grace of a drunken donkey. No one was making a cheerleader out of me.
Who am I now? Well.... that's actually a good question.
I still have the grace of a drunken donkey.... except I am actually drunk.... quite often anyway.... but now I blame all the tripping on the MS. I have one marriage under my belt and I'm now on my second. (though doing quite better with this one, thank you very much) One failed business under my belt as well - totally on to a second (personally fulfilling but poorly paying) career. I have an extra 40 pounds or so, a shit ton of debt and no assets to speak of, a neurological disease, but, a beautiful daughter....
Mix well, serve over ice...
(I mean, true, you have to add a splash of charm and a bit of snark in there... but that's the basic recipe.)
I was so shy in high school. I wanted to be cool. I wanted to be pretty. I wanted boys to fall all over themselves over me. I wanted to be smart. I wanted to be funny and charming and graceful. I wanted to be talented.
I was, instead, awkward, self-conscious, and completely unaware. I was smart, but not as naturally brilliant as some of my classmates. I was talented, but not like my incredibly naturally gifted friends. I was pretty, but not in the "guys falling all over themselves" kind of way. I was funny, but always afraid that people were laughing at me, not with me. I was as graceful as a drunken donkey. (but we already covered that...)
However, as each former classmate showed up, I found myself to be not at all self-conscious. I wasn't worried about the 40 extra pounds (or the fact that I was sweating like a whore in church (it was hot as hell you guys!)) as I hugged each one and met their spouse or significant other or children. I chatted with everyone I could, as much as I could, and really enjoyed the whole day that I had managed to pull together, with those who had managed to join me.
The thing was, as I sat among these people, so of whom I can't say I even knew in high school, I realized that none of us were who we were in high school... and, in some cases (maybe most? all?), I don't think we ever even were who we thought we were in high school. (confusing much? yes.) And as much as it mattered then? That was how much it didn't matter now.
I was having flashes of The Breakfast Club playing in my head. (because, really, it's a great movie.... and a welcome change from the Dora the Explorer episodes that seem to play there on a regular basis....)
And what did we learn from The Breakfast Club? That's right:
"Dear Mr. Vernon, we accept the fact that we had to sacrifice a whole Saturday in detention for whatever it was we did wrong. What we did *was* wrong. But we think you're crazy to make us write an essay telling you who we think we are. You see us as you want to see us... In the simplest terms, in the most convenient definitions. But what we found out is that each one of us is a brain... and an athlete... and a basket case... and a princess... and a criminal...
Does that answer your question?... Sincerely yours, the Breakfast Club."
And what *else* did we learn from The Breakfast Club? Right again:
The jocks and the bad boys always get the girls. The nerds are just badass writers.... and apparently drink a lot later in life.
Thanks for spending that saturday in detention with me you guys. I look forward to doing it again in 5 years.... or sooner.