Are High School Reunions Still A Thing?

Are High School Reunions Still A Thing?

We've all seen our lives play out in real time on social media, so what's left to talk about?
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Let’s jump into it right out of the gate: high school reunions are sort of dumb. Perhaps in the dark ages prior to social media, it was intriguing to find out what people were up to ten or twenty years after you last saw one another. But these days, we just look on Facebook to see who got fat, had kids, got married, divorced, and all of that fun stuff. And let’s face it, all that “fun stuff” is why people show up to high school class reunions. Let’s pretend for a second that I am being overly cynical.

Let’s imagine that you moved away after high school and haven’t returned often to your hometown and also rebuke all forms of social media (but then how did they even find you to invite you?). Maybe it would be a nostalgic adventure to return to your beloved hometown and warmly “catch up” with all of those long-lost acquaintances. If this Pollyanna-esque reunion is what you have in mind, then I hope for your sake that your hometown is not like mine: a sweltering non-tropical opposite-of-an-oasis kind of place. Don’t get me wrong, I live less than an hour from my old high school; I’ve adjusted to the heat, my pool helps tremendously.

But why in god’s name would you decide to host a class reunion in the dead of summer? I’m sure most of those who did move away have never thought, “Gee, you know what would be great? Taking a trip to a place with triple digit weather and a lingering aroma of manure and make small talk with a bunch of people I know vaguely.” People who organize class reunions: maybe try to make it appealing? I just think if I’m going to spend an entire evening going over the same highlight reel I’ve seen on Facebook for the past ten years, I would like to at least not be dripping sweat. Is that really too much to ask?

Needless to say, I skipped my ten year reunion. But to be fair, it was the same weekend I was moving. And I didn’t really want to go. I’m sure no one missed me. Because a) the few people I still talk to weren’t going and b) many of my other classmates see my highlights on social media.

I’m sorry, but if I have to arrange for an all-night babysitter, drive nearly an hour, pay a five-star price tag for a dive bar buffet, spend all night awkwardly introducing my husband to people I only kind of know and repeat the same boring-ish story of the last decade of my life, then I only ask that it not be one hundred and thirteen goddamn degrees outside.No offense. Maybe I’ll see you all at the twenty-year. Don’t hold your breath.

I think there’s a reason we stay connected to some and not to others. I was neither homecoming queen nor a wallflower. I played some sports, I went to some parties. I ditched class with friends from time to time, and even went to those terrible parties with shitty beer out in fields and barns (I grew up in a fairly rural area). I was always kind of an outsider at heart, though. I was technically from the next town over, and most of classmates had known one another since birth.

That wasn’t my scene; to me, small towns are like comfort food: they can be great in small doses, but consumed daily and that shit will kill you, or just make you incredibly miserable. On occasion, I have ran into old classmates and it was fun to say hello for a few minutes. But I feel like if class reunions are to have any relevance moving forward, they have to do more than offer a superficial moment of socializing.

Invite us all to a football game and drinks after. I might go to that. Maybe a costume party with prizes? Now we’re talking. Draw the weird ones like myself back with something of interest. I promise it will make the night a lot more interesting.

Cover Image Credit: Racked

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10 Things I Want To Thank My Best Friend For

"We've made it this far, now you are stuck with me for life!"
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We've been friends for forever, but even when we had known each other for only ten minutes, you've given me a gift that no one else could.

No one else has been by my side, by choice, through all of the crap I've pulled. I am absolutely sure that I'm difficult sometimes, but you've never faltered. I don't often thank you for all that you do, but you are honestly such a wonderful and huge part of my life. You're irreplaceable. You are my "girl soulmate".

Here are just a couple things I don't think you get thanked enough for:

1. Not putting up with my shit. This one is important. If I'm bitchy or doing something that isn't good for me, you are the first, and often the only, person to call me out on it. Every time I text that guy that only wants sex, every time I'm irritable and mean for no reason, every time I don't take accountability for my actions, you are the one person I know will tell it like it is.

2. For being honest. Whether it was over something silly, like whether or not the shoes I picked out were cute, or something serious, like asking your opinion over big life decisions. You were honest about the decisions I made. Whether you agreed with them or not.

3. Your unconditional love. Along with being honest with me about my wrongdoings, you love me through them. Many people have walked in and out of my life, and that messes with a person's head, but you have never wavered in showing me that I am loved. You have cared for me through our fights, our good times, our binges, your heartbreaks.You love me, by choice, even when I'm not so lovable.

4. Being my rock. When all I have done for days is laid in bed and cried, when I'm pissed off, and when I had joy in my heart, you are my rock. My shoulder to cry on, the lighthouse guiding me through the storm. You've always kept me grounded, lifted my spirits when I can't lift myself, and done all in your power to make sure I okay. It's not an easy task, but you handle it so well and I love you for that.

5. For Listening. I know there are times where you don't understand the circumstances I am going through, or experiencing, and you didn't know what to say. Regardless, you listened. You let me vent about the tough situations and made me feel like someone cared about what I had to say. You also always listen when I complained about being broke, about my parents (love you guys so much) or pretty much about anything and everything. Thank you for letting me be the whiner I am.

6. Sticking with me through my awkward phase(s). As of right now, I'm pretty solid. I'm somewhat normal and I have a semi-decent sense of fashion, but that was not always the case. I went through so many phases through our friendship and you may not have joined me in wearing thick eyeliner and black clothes, but you sure as hell stayed my friend while I did all of those dumb things.

7. Letting me borrow and steal your clothes. When I hated everything I owned, you never hesitate to lend me that cute dress you got off the sale rack, or that adorable shirt I talked you into getting. You always have my back when I feel like nothing looks good on me and you dress me up and send me on my way-- even if you were planning on wearing it. And also thank you for looking like a dork with me - you know, when we would want to wear matching close to school...yikes.

8. Taking care of me. Whether I was having a bad day at school or something was going on in my family, you were always there. You've always allowed me the best care when I feel like shit emotionally. You bring me cookies and ice cream, diet coke, and sad movies so I veg out and binge and then you help me get back on my feet when it's time.

9. Giving me advice. I rarely take the words of wisdom from anyone, but you always give me advice anyway, every time I ask, and often when I don't. It is unbiased and given with only my best interest in mind, and that's such a beautiful thing. You help me through things that I don't know anything about and you pull me out when I don't take your advice and get stuck between a rock and a hard place. Then, even though I didn't take it ten times before, you offer up your advice again.

10. For accepting me. Being that you've been friends with me for forever, you've seen me at my worst and my best. Regardless, you still choose to hang out with me. So I mean, that's pretty cool.

It's been a long time, and we've had our fights, but you have been my friend through it all. We've made it through elementary school, middle school and high school, through the beginnings of adulthood, through heartbreaks, together. We've stuck together at the hip and never expected anything in return.

I promise to try my best to be the best friend I can be for you.

Thank you, for everything.


Love,

JoJo




Cover Image Credit: Camera Roll

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You Might Be Sad About High School Graduation, But Let Me Tell You, That Sadness Is Nothing Compared To College Graduation

Here's to praying you'll see them again.
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It's that time of year again. High school seniors are posting their final senior pictures, their sappy "I can't believe its almost over" posts, and their countdowns until graduation. They're experiencing many of their "lasts." Last week of school, last turkey tetrazzini day in the cafeteria, last baseball game they'll pitch at, the list goes on and on. And for many, it's sad. It's sad for the seniors who are leaving, and their younger friends who are stuck watching them go.

It's sad because they're leaving behind a chapter of their lives. It's sad because they'll never have their favorite teacher in class again. It's sad because they're not sure if the friends that they've held so dear for so long will still be in their lives a year from now. If you are a high school senior, and there's a part of you that is sad, believe me when I say I understand.

It's perfectly normal and okay to be sad because of so many different worries going through your head about the future. But let me warn you-high school graduation sadness pales in comparison to the sadness that can be felt during college graduations.

When people graduate high school, there is always your hometown for them to come home to. You may think that you'll never see them again, but you will. If they're truly your friend, and you both want to see each other again, then you will. You'll see them on holidays, over the summer, and random weekends when you're both in town. It's not as often as when you're in high school, but it'll be more often than you're probably thinking it will be.

College graduation is different.

College graduation is honestly one of the hardest things to accept.

No matter if both of you or just one of you is graduating, the fact of the matter is that if you're going different directions in your life, you truly could never see them again. It's not like high school where you have your hometown binding you together no matter how far apart you go. You don't go back to your college for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and summer like you do with your hometown when you're in college. You've only got the years you both spend in college together, and that is difficult to come to terms with.

So to the high school seniors and their younger friends, I know it's a sad time. But the people who you want to stay in your life, will be in your life. And to people in college who are graduating, and who have older friends graduating, cherish the time you have left together. Because after walking across that stage, you truly never know if you'll ever see them again. And that is genuinely sad.

Cover Image Credit: Instagram

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