Missed opportunities

 I posted recently about my 35th High School Reunion. It was a honest piece in which I spoke directly to the healing that I have experienced in the years since I graduated.

I spent a lot of years blaming others for my own lack of visibility and satisfaction. Consequently, I developed an aversion to all things HS related, in particular Reunions. Fortunately, I grew up and eventually I went to a couple. What I came up with is that it was as much my fault as anyone else. That realization led to growth. So in my post I was honest to myself and issued a statement to my classmates. It was fairly well received on WP. But WP wasn’t the desired audience. As supportive as the community was, I felt that my former classmates needed to hear it. So I posted the link to the FB page of my HS class. I was nervous. I felt like I was in HS again, so afraid of being judged or ostracized by my classmates. But I knew that it didn’t matter in the big picture what they thought of me. I had put that monkey behind me. And I was further fortified by the possibility that I wouldn’t even be alive for the next one. I hit the “share” button. There was no turning back.

The response was amazing.

People that I thought never even knew my name responded. Friends who I had lost touch with for years told me how proud they were to be my friend. Comment after comment posted about how well I captured the experience of High School. Of how they could relate. Of how they remembered me. One of my classmates went so far as to say that my prose had inspired him to attend the next one.I received multiple FB inbox messages telling me how much my post meant to them. Friend requests followed. My blog received a record 151 views in one day. I was deeply humbled.

 I am a guy who walked out of  The Breakfast Club saying “I call Bullshit”. I never believed that the scars caused by the cliques of HS could be overcome by one 8 hour session of detention. When RUSH released the song Subdivisions,I immediately adopted it as the story of my High School experience.To say that I was jaded is an understatement.  

I carried this resentment for too many years. It was uncomfortable, cumbersome and it went on for too long. Based on the feedback, and in some cases support, of my classmates I now know that I had it all wrong. So many years living in my own head.

Sunday I am driving to MA to have lunch with a guy I went to HS with. He was the most recent of FB inbox messages related to my FB posting. He really wants to get together and get to know each other. Here’s the kicker. I never knew him in HS as a friend. I actually thought he disliked me. Apparently I was wrong. I look forward to making a new friend, even if it’s an old one I wasn’t aware of. 

So many missed opportunities. I wonder how many I can recover before it’s too late.

25 thoughts on “Missed opportunities”

  1. Although pouring your heart out CAN be intimidating as hell, I often find that doing so allows me to be that much freer and lighter if that makes any sense…? If you keep carrying around old baggage, there is no room for the new

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I remember having similar feelings about high school, while I was there, afterwards, and so on. It’s tough to overcome our own instilled perceptions, particularly when planted so young. Your willingness to grow now will make up for a lot in a very short amount of time. Have a great lunch and tell us how it goes!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. We really never know how we come across to other people. I’m always surprised – sometimes pleasantly. Oddly I am in touch with some of guys I went to high school through my brother who still lives in the town where we grew up.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. That… takes some nerve to unleash one’s writing to the people the writing is about. I’ve never done that an until recently, blogged as other people. I sort of fear the people I write about seeing what I write about them. It’s wonderful to see the bravery paid off and I hope it continues to do so.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I say it as I see it … do it as it needs doing … live it as if there’s no tomorrow, no yesterday … no choice but to know it will be what is left of me in that other when … not in the works, but in the words and memories of others –

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Oh, thank you (I have a bit of a problem saying things short and sweet), and I’m glad you liked the story – there’s another one due out early next year (I’ll put you on my list of ‘good guys’).

        Liked by 1 person

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