It’s a pretty day here at the Home Office in Gretna, Nebraska. Someone tuckered the dogs out (thanks, Babe!), and I slept in until 7, so I’m feeling rested. An old high school friend just contacted me. She is coming in from Wisconsin and staying in Gretna with her sister for our 50 + 1 HS Reunion. Of COURSE I’ll pick you up on my way past your sister’s to get to I-80. Outstanding!
Friends getting together will be very important this year. I haven’t attended a reunion since the 25th one – right before I had a mobility threatening issue with my spine, spinal cord, and all that. It was before I met the Babe. It was after another of my successive bad breakups, given my history of poor decisions about male friends. Then, in 1996, it all changed. Thanks again, Babe!
If I recall correctly, our class was intact for five years. We lost one classmate to cancer early, in the 5 – 10-year span, and I believe one to a car accident. Nothing too close. 25 years later, many have succumbed to cancer, accidents, heart attacks, and other things that people pass away from. We are all in the 69 – 71 age categories. Many have chronic illnesses. Many have life altering sicknesses. We are getting old. Our group has lost some very kind people; some spouses have died, and one woman who was a great volleyball player and friend of many, nurse to hundreds of people. Some will have canes, walkers, and electric scooters. But our hearts will still be young. The key to a happy life.
I believe we will all chat with each other. I believe we will all wish each other well. I believe we will all include each other by the end of the evening. What we won’t do is still have a “cool kid” group; a “band nerd” group; and a group of people who just don’t belong anywhere. I am positive I was the last group. It may have been self inflicted, as I had no self esteem and thought a girl’s goal in life was simply to marry and have kids. If you would have told me where these last 50 + 1 years would take me, I’d consider you a liar or a tall taleteller. If I were to select my high school category at this age, looking back, I’d be a late bloomer. It explains these vast opportunities I learned to create, and the risks I’m taking now that I’ve never done before. (Thank you, Billy McGuigan. You have taught me well). I’ve become the Queen of “Why NOT?” before my very eyes. Who is that woman, looking back at me from the mirror? It’s the real me. Living my own truth. Oh the places we’ve gone. What we’ve learned!
The trials and tribulations of growing up are now in their proper place; I’m looking forward to August 6, at the Field Club in Omaha, for our 50 + 1 class reunion. I’m looking to rekindling friendships, and acquaintences, too. We’re going to have a great time. Our faces will hurt from smiling. It’ll be a good hurt. The kind we should all have at this age. Ghosts of the past are buried, we can all be genuine and honest with each other. Let’s have a great time, classmates!
I’ll see you tomorrow, and we’ll do some more studying about kidlit. My illustrator Cartney and I have a schedule to follow with our work, and August 2, after our VFW Post 2503 Car Show, I’m resurrecting my novel, “The Freeing of Katie Fitzgibbons.” The studio/office needs some serious straightening up. All things in good time!