Where has the time gone? Seriously? It feels like yesterday but it has been a bit over 20 years since I walked that stage. May 25, 1995 I received my high school diploma and said, "Goodbye!"to Clear Lake High School forever. Or did I? I left the area for Air Force Basic Training but came back after. I left again to move in with my sweeties in Tyler, Texas and stayed away long enough to have a kid but it called me back. Both my husband and I were raised in the area, though he is homegrown and I was a transplant as a toddler and our parents are still here. I lived away from my grandparents and really wanted our kids to know theirs as well as possible. We moved back in 2005, just in time for our 10 year High School Reunion. So Goodbye tirned into see you later really. September me and many of my fellow Falcon Alumni will celebrate 20 years since we graduated high school. I, for one, am excited. Today I decided to talk to you about my high school experience and hopefully make you think about making time for your reunion.
I was not a popular kid. I came to our school district brand new in 4th grade after my parents divorced and we lost our home. Trying to break in with a bunch of kids who have been togethee since the sandbox in an area that housed many upperclass neighborhoods was hard. We had been there until my Mom had to care for us alone. So I didn't have many friends, I wasn't weathy, and I wasn't skinny so I was lost. It doesn't help that I was terribly depressed in a time when no one talked about kids' mental health issues or the need for counseling after divorce. I was painfully shy and that didn't help at all. I didn't really begin making close friends for a while. In fact, I have only 1 friend that I still talk to from 4th grade. Middle school brought more friends and more bullies. I was never dressed right. I didn't know a damn thing about makeup because my Mom was raised by her Dad. In fact, I rarely wear makeup these days. The group that I finally found my place with in Middle school was the head bangers and skaters. In high school it was Reserve Officer's Training Corps (ROTC), which the popular kids called, not-so-affectionately, Rejects On The Campus. The crap I went through in school, starting with my depression and shyness caused horrible social anxiety that I still battle today. People tell me that they thought,initially, that I was conceited, mean, or just hated them but in truth I was scared shitless to say or do the wrong thing. I am getting better...
Now, why am I telling you all this? Good question. Despite hard times and some not-so-great memories, I am going to my 20th High school reunion. I have heard a lot of excuses about why people won't be going.
1. We all have aged by 20 years. Some better than others and many better than me.
2.None of us are still our high school weight. Some are bigger, some are smaller, and it is to be expected. Personally, I have given birth to 2 beautiful boys, helped raise 2 more beautiful boys, had life saving surgeries, been deliriously happy, and been lower than low. My body has taken a beating but it has definitely been lived in.
3. We haven't achieved all our goals that we ambitiously set at 17/18. Ok, I did things my own way. I sustained a disabling back injury at 19 in the Air Force and it knocked me down. I worked some shit jobs, got married, and had 2 kids before deciding to go back to school in 2007. I will graduate with my Bachelor's degree in Social Work in May 2016. It took awhile and I stumbled but I got back up. You are alive and kicking. Some days that is all you have so celebrate the shit out of it.
Here are my truths-
1. I am going to see my friends and thanks to Facebook some of those are people who didn't give me the time of day in HS. I hold very few grudges and it is likely that those people are not going.
2. I am prouder now than I ever was in school to be a Clear Lake Falcon. I survived some of the toughest, most trying times of my life and I am still here.
3. It looks like I might be working check in and *I* want to see you. I will have a genuine smile for you and your +1 & if you want to walk away and talk about my fluffy figure... I don't care anymore. Have fun. It is something in you that needs correcting, not me.
4. This reunion is being put together by people who have our best interests at heart. They listened to us and made it happen. One has even fronted personal funds to make it great. Please pay your money and come out and celebrate with us.
5. My husband, who is an alum, is worse about social situations than me. He hates crowds and loud moise. He is staying home with our kids. If you need a friendly face, I am available all night to smile and laugh with you.
Please consider coming to the Clear Lake High School Class of 95 20th reunion!