Summer is not only the season for lawn concerts, great tans, weddings and BBQs. Many of you may have also received the lovely invitation to your high school reunion. Now, reunions may sound like a lot of fun, but they can very extremely stress inducing if not prepared. Whether it is your 5th, 10th, 15th or 20th reunion, here are some things you should expect!
1) “So, where are you now?”
Tip: Develop a concise answer before you attend your reunion because you will be answering the “so, where are you now?” question more than you would like to. Since it has been a while since you last saw these people they have every right to ask even though we all know that nobody really gives a damn. It is really just an easy way to spark conversation with a few familiar strangers because let’s face it, if we actually kept in contact with each other like we said we would at graduation, this question wouldn’t exist.
2) Pretentious bragging.
There will always be that pretentious asshole who only attends the reunion just to brag about his/her success to make everyone else question their own accomplishments. Don’t feed into it – just simply smile, nod, maybe throw in a dry “congratulations”, and make your way to the nearest table of hors d’oeuvres.
3) Best friends! …Since when?
Another way people try to break the ice is to pretend that you were great friends when really, you weren’t. You may have only had Calculus with them for one year and don’t even remember their last name, but in their head, you guys were obviously best friends for life. This is just something you will have to accept because the world is full of fakes and phonies. Once again, be polite and then B-line it to the nearest food and/or drink table.
4) Weirdos turned Cool Kids
Ahh the perks of actually growing up! Those weird kids that used to hangout in the school’s basement and play with lint are all grown up now! College and adulthood has been good to them and now they won’t scurry at the sight of conversation – they actually engage and have very interesting lives. Wow! At some point in time you will feel a little awful for not giving them a fair chance in high school but hey, we all had some growing up to do!
5) You will get drunk.
This is pretty self explanatory. Awkward conversations and scenarios plus free alcohol equals one big drunk mess! The organizers of the reunion already know they would have a very low showing if they did not provide alcohol, so quell your anxieties and drink up kids! A little liquid courage never hurt anyone and 9 times out of 10, you won’t be the only one who is taking full advantage of the open bar.
6) Babies on board!
OH BABY! When it comes to starting a family, not everyone follows the same timeline. Expect a few of your classmates to bring along their new family additions and milk it for what it’s worth! Whether you have your own child or are just holding someone else’s, babies are a great distraction from the awkward conversations about the times in high school and even embracing those few people that you really don’t like. You can easily pull a “So sorry, I would give you a hug but I’m kind of holding this adorable baby!” Once the babies are out, all eyes are on them and their cuteness, not your stories of struggle and failure.
7) Along with babies, some with be rocking the hardware.
Be prepared for those with new hardware on their finger and don’t get jealous. Some people have found the loves of their lives and are completely happy. Just because your love connection may only be with your dog(s), you have no reason to be salty. Your time will come and you should just be happy for the couple. Jealousy doesn’t look good on anyone.
8) Ex-flings and hook-ups will be in attendance.
This may be one of the most dreaded aspects of reunions because at some point in high school these are the few people that may have seen you naked! There is a list of reasons you’d rather have nothing to do with them, but you cannot deny the fact you have shared some intimate times. Awkward. When you do see these ex-lovers, don’t run away, as it will show a sign of weakness. Just simply acknowledge them and try to have a cordial conversation. You never know, maybe you guys will be able to laugh about it and make it less awkward. If not, the closest food platter is your best option!
9) Those awkward and highly inappropriate student-teacher relationships will still be awkward and highly inappropriate.
We all knew about the girl who was “secretly” hooking up with the younger math teacher. Or the older history teacher that was a little too “hands-on” with his students. Those relationships that made you cringe in high school will still make your skin crawl as an adult. That girl and the math teacher may even be married right now! The best advice I can give is to keep your opinions to yourself and try not to create any visuals in your head.
10) You will feel like shit and wish you never came.
There will come that time when you are sick of hearing how everyone is doing better than you and you will question why you chose to attend in the first place. This may be your insecurities speaking as well as the alcohol. Whatever the situation, know you are doing your best at conquering this thing called life. You may not be where you thought you would be by now, but you are getting there! So keep your back straight and your head up and you represent for all the struggling college grads out there! 11) You will be happy you actually showed up.
While you may have a low moment during your reunion, at some point, you will be happy you made it! When you step back and look at the bigger picture, you are actually happy to see these people and share your stories. Quite frankly, you should be happy to say you are alive to see your _?_th year reunion. Life is beautiful when you really appreciate it.
12) Did I mention you would get drunk?
Two words: Open bar.