Why I’m Going To My 30 Year High School Reunion
When I say the words 'high school reunion' what feelings come up? I suppose it depends on what kind of experience you had during your high school days. For many, they truly are some of the best times of your life. But others might not share those same joyful memories. I'll admit for me, personally, high school was a bit of a mixed bag. But it won't stop me from attending my 30-year reunion this weekend.
Some kids enter high school with a sense of purpose and excitement. Yeah, that wasn't me. I was a tall, skinny, kid with braces who simply hadn't found his path in life yet. That is largely what high school is for. I was incredibly shy, didn't get good grades, and never found myself sitting with the 'popular' kids at lunch. My biggest fear my freshman year? Getting shoved into a locker by a senior! Fortunately, it never happened.
Eventually, I began to explore. I discovered music and band. I discovered I was pretty good at it! I emersed myself into concert band, jazz band, marching band, and eventually show choir. And while concentrating on those activities, I met kids with shared interests. Kids like me. Some of my fondest memories of high school are of my time in the band room, or at a competition. It helped me feel like I belonged.
But there was still something missing. Confidence. My parents could see this too. So my senior year they encouraged me, made me really, go out for individual speech. It was an effort to get me to come out of my shell. I was horrified. How on earth could I muster up the strength to get up in front of people and talk? That is when I discovered Radio, News, and Broadcasting. The only category of individual speech performed behind closed doors, in front of no one. It turns out I had found my calling, my path in life.
I remember my senior year of high school as one of the best years in my young life. Some of my friends from 30 years ago remain my friends to this day. Many classmates remain in Eastern Iowa while others have left the state and are living their lives in a new town or city. I get why some might not want to relive high school. But that isn't what a reunion is for, at least not in my opinion. I want to see faces I haven't seen in 30 years. I want to hear about their jobs and families. I would like to tell them about mine. I want to laugh about stories from when we were 18 years old and wonder out loud how we all got so old.
The Anamosa Class of 1993 will hold its 30-year class reunion on Saturday night. This old Raider will be there, hoping to make some new memories with some old friends. Just don't ask me to sing the fight song.
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Gallery Credit: Madison Troyer