Sometimes I find myself thinking about high school.
I know. For many of us, it’s a scary thought — a dark hell hole of drama-filled days and self-loathing nights. A time that we try desperately to forget and leave in the dust that we hoped to create when we got our diplomas and high-tailed it out of a building that felt more like a prison than a school.
And yet, so many of the people that I graduated with, myself included, cried on the day that we were told we had completed all of the requirements needed to graduate. Were we crying because our future was so unknown despite the plans that we made to make it “big”? Or were those tear drops proof of knowledge that these were our final days of being children?
I am no longer the person that I was when I graduated in June of 2009.
The people that I graduated with are no longer the same people that they were in June of 2009.
And for that, I am thankful.
However, I still find it difficult sometimes to see pictures of the people who made it through the numerous purges that I went through on my Facebook account between then and now. And I find it difficult because I see these people’s faces and I realize that I don’t know who they are anymore. I realize that we all went different ways as soon as we walked out of ROCORI High School for the last time, but nothing had prepared me to know that these people would one day become strangers to me.
Yes. There are still some people that I do know. I know what they’re doing. I know where they are. And most importantly, I know that I give a shit about them.
But I fear for the day that I get an invitation for a class reunion. I fear that we will all silently slip back into the fools that we once were years ago, if even just for the night. The cliques that we claimed we were never in will snap back into place. And the band kids — my sanctuary — will be band kids. The athletes will be the athletes. And so on, and so forth. And we will forget that we’ve made ourselves into people better than what we were.
I hope that my kid sister, the one who just recently graduated from my same high school, will one day look back onto her time and not have the same remorse toward the people she once knew as I do toward the people I no longer recognize. I hope that her points of nostalgia bring happiness rather than guilt and frustration as they do for me.
Because as far as I am concerned:
I don’t need you anymore.