okay, i just want to say that i highly recommend three days in a hotel room by yourself. i recommend drinking too much with your friends and sleeping too little. i recommend going for the shoes just because they're awesome. i recommend embracing every moment.
i do not recommend forgetting to put something in your body other than what comes in a glass. or sitting by the pool in 107 degrees.
the short version is that the reunion weekend was a smashing success. from the start to the finish i couldn't have had a better time.
the long version is a bit wordier. more convoluted. a reconciling with the past with an eye towards the future. i don't understand how i live so far from my friends. i am amazed at how much my heart expands when i'm with them. and i am ecstatically pleased to report the acquisition of some "new" friends. people i've known more than half my life but only just now "met."
i was also amazed to learn that everything i felt in high school is what everyone else was feeling too. which is weird because i'm a smart girl. but it was definitely an eye opening, well duh! moment or two or seven to get that.
and i guess i'm happy to know i can still learn from the people around me. be surprised by how life turns out. to know i wasn't alone in feeling the out of body experience that was adolescence.
how any of us gets out alive i will never know. actually, that's not true. i do know. my friends saved me. meeting them then made all the difference in the world. with so many arms to hold you aloft it's easy to make it through the mire.
what really amazed me though was how lonesome so many people admitted to being in high school. even those with so many friends around and those with the apparent trappings of high school "success." at the core we were all just silly mortals. i wish i knew that then. i'm glad to know that now.
and what i really enjoyed was the time to be me. rather to remember that deep down inside i'm still the girl i always was. am. no i didn't dance on any speakers, but i got to decide when and where for the whole time there with no thought to anyone else.
and while i don't think i'd care for that lifestyle for more than a few days, it was really great for the time. i think that as parents and partners we tend to over time soften up that core "us." blend it with the family core. which is what i've always wanted all my life and appreciate the most about the life i have. but if who i was got me to where i am today, i want to embrace her and let her know i know she's still there.
and along with that, i am appreciative of the wisdom and experience i have to fully embrace those moments that come when you are hanging out for a big chunk of time with a group of people. that when someone reached out to me i was able to reach back. that i was able to clutch the hand that grabbed mine. to respond to the well timed embrace. to listen to the words that sometimes came with tears. to say i know, i get it, i understand.
and it's the same as it was then. because while we've grown and acquired all the things that certify us as actual adult human beings, we all just want the same things we wanted then.
to be seen, to be understood, to be loved.
now lest you think it was all tearful hand holding and introspection, it wasn't. thank god, right?
okay, so there are some stories i could tell you, but because the interwebs are becoming an increasingly small place for me i won't. because whether people recognize themselves in print or just assume, it's murky. sorry. maybe over a little whiskey by a bonfire one evening in person, but not here.
i will say this, i don't recommend going up to a greek orthodox father in full collar and everything standing with his wife and opening with an overly enthusiastic
"oh my god, hi! i think of you almost every day!"
yeah. not so much with the smooth. his wife had a look on her face that is nearly indescribable. which as you can imagine is a very difficult thing for me to admit to. as generally this is my forte. but i truly can't describe it.
in my defense, and yes i have one, i do think of him often. but only because the duke has been learning academic/classical greek for years and wingman starts in the fall. and i think of him because one of the elements to the curriculum is ecclesiastical. and since he's the only greek orthodox father i "know" he pops into my head.
i explained this, of course. but, yeah. the whole package deal was a little much for them.
i also don't recommend grabbing someone too tightly and badgering them with repeated "oh my god why didn't know each other in high school! you're so awesome!"
i was told this could be construed as creepy or needy. i thought it rather endearing. go figure.
i did stop shy of the alternative to that which is "oh my god why didn't we date in high school!"
now i can agree that THAT might be a bit awkward.
and i will admit to taking sadistic pleasure in seeing the girl who bullied me in junior high and who continued to be a bitch in high school weeping more than once during the evening. and still not know how to dance. or dress.
it was beautiful. so there. i said it.
there were some mishaps to the evening, as there generally are with me. i narrowly missed having a three foot tall, ultra heavy stone standing ashtray take out my leg. as in i was chatting with someone, heard something fall behind me, only to say "huh, what was that noise?" and then look behind me and see this huge thing a fraction of an inch from my heel. oy.
that might have put a damper on an otherwise fabulous evening.
i also had an entire glass of beer fully spilled onto my chest and down into the front of my dress. oh, my the look on his face was priceless. i think he thought i was going to take my shoe off and beat him with it right then and there.
but i wasn't angry, just momentarily stunned. i did find my words when he took his napkin as if he was going to mop it up himself. a natural reaction, sure, but i quickly assured him i was okay and yes, i'll be mopping it up myself thankyouverymuch.
it was 7000 degrees in that place if it was anything. i think i lost weight just standing there. and the food was not bad, but it wasn't good either. regardless, everyone was raving about it. oh, this is so good, they were all saying. and i was like, do you people never eat out? really? but one of the waiters was supah cute so i kept up the pretense of taking food from him just to keep him coming back.
hey, this girl had no date. you've got to take what you can get.
and it was good just to be out in the street too late at night. slightly tipsy and surrounded by friends. knowing you're better off going to bed, but letting things happen as they will. flirting with the pretty girls, enjoying the charms of the boys. how quickly a group can fall into a pattern.
we forget this in our day to day. that life offers so much more than we are usually exposed to, used to experiencing. and sometimes it's good to not over think it. because when i'm nearing the end of my days here i don't think i'll be lying in bed wishing i had gone home earlier.
so that's done. one more boxed checked off in the grand list of life experiences. only this time the build up wasn't a precursor to a let down.
and as i left and was being driven to the airport i actually "forgot" to be freaked out in the car, so consumed with thought and a comfortable sleepiness. i can't say i even much noticed the traffic around us. as you know, this doesn't happen. ever.
and the time going home just flew. the wait in the airport the plane ride the shuttle ride. i was home before i knew it.
and i'm glad to be home, to kiss the lord of the ring, to hug my boybarians, to fight for bed space with the cats. but i still feel like went by too quickly. which is funny because i remember having the exact same thought the last few days before high school graduation.
more often than not all of life just goes by too quickly. especially the good stuff. so when you get the chance, fully embrace it when it's in front of you.
you'll be glad you did.