I just spent the weekend with the most amazing women. Women I’ve known pretty much my whole life (with the exception of Leigh, who was Margaret’s best friend from Penn State, but who we’ve known for so long that she’s one of the group.) Women who know my deepest, darkest secrets and manage to like me anyway. Women who make me feel humble (because there’s nothing like hanging out with people who knew you “back in the day” to keep you humble.)
Margaret was the hostess with the mostess. She lives in Caseyville, IL, and works for a securities firm whose name keeps changing, causing her no end of work. (She’s in internal communications.)
Lin is on the faculty at a college in Maryland (I know, my command of the details has always been my strong point.) She’s the only one of us with a Ph.D. And we’re very proud of her.
Maria left us after sophomore year of high school and we hadn’t seen her in 28 years. She lives in Colorado and does communications for a not-for-profit foster care agency. And yes, we picked up with her pretty much where we left off.
Leigh is our adopted friend. She lives in Herndon, VA and is a national account manager for a large cosmetic company.
And me, of course.
The sixth member of our little group, Karla, could not be with us this weekend and we were sad. But she’ll be with us next year.
I feel refreshed and relaxed. We laughed and talked and ate and slept and talked some more. As it always is when we get together, it was like we had never been apart.
We talked about elementary school and middle school and the disastrous (for most of us) “open space” experiment we were all subjected to in 5th grade. We talked about our jobs and our kids and our mundane lives. And of course we talked about high school. How nasty we were to each other at times (I think it might have had something to do with some boys, many of whose names now escape us after 27 years.) How much fun we had at band camp. (No, seriously, we did.) And on the band bus. (Yeah, seriously. We did.) About the differences between the perceptions we had of each others’ home lives growing up, and the realities of those lives.
We talked about past loves and past good-enough-for-nows. We shared our best moments and those we were still ashamed of, even after 10, 15, 25 years. Our proudest memories and our most embarrassing moments. Things we love remembering about high school and things we’d rather forget. And we made amends for things we should have made amends for years ago, and that we were still carrying around inside.
What was most fascinating to me was that we each had such different recollections of the same events. And I’m quite sure that if we had a recording of the actual events, they would be different than any of us remembers.
Though changes come, as time rolls on, we’ll always be loyal and true..
(And yes, I had to look that up. Thank you, Google.)