Last night was my high school class reunion. I was supposed to go with a friend, who had to back out at the last minute because of a family emergency. As a result, I almost didn't go. The idea of going solo nearly spooked me into staying home.
While high school was fun, we always remember (or at least I do) the not-so-fun part, the insecurity, the belief that everybody hated you, and that nobody would ever like you. Even though it was mostly in my head, sometimes I found myself dwelling on the negative. There's strength in numbers and when your friend can't go you feel a little more susceptible to those negative thoughts, especially when someone inevitably doesn't remember you and is staring at you blankly, or remembers that they did indeed dislike you.
But I'm glad I mustered up the intestinal fortitude to head on over anyway. It was a good time. Every reunion I've gone to, I always find myself hitting it off with someone I never talked to in high school, which is always fascinating to me. And then hitting it off with the people I was friends with. I wouldn't say I'm super close to a lot of people I went to high school with, but as a class it impresses me how we all got along, at least on a superficial level, and managed to avoid much of the cliquiness that sometimes seems to be what high school is all about.
And there are those who made me feel glad I went, those who said stuff like, "Phil, you get it," and "You carried me in chemistry class as my lab partner" (even though if anything it was the other way around) and "The cool thing about you, Phil, is that you're always smiling" (even though I'm not always smiling). It's great to catch up with everybody, but sometimes it's the little comments that make you feel good about yourself, like you're definitely glad you pulled yourself off the couch and forced yourself to go.