I went to my 30th year class reunion at the end of July. Everyone was milling around, hugging each other and seemed so glad to see each other. People came up to me, but I soon recognized there was only two people I actually went up to and hugged.
Louis Parker, Jr. was one of them. I asked him, "Louis, where was I? I don't feel like I know anyone." He said, "Wanda, you were quiet. If no one said anything to you, you didn't say anything to them. We saw you in class, passing in the halls, and the school dances."
I must admit I felt a little empty inside, but I soon got over it. I didn't have time for them in high school. So many of them seemed as immature as they were. I thought I was grown and carried myself that way. Yes, there are drawbacks to feeling this way. One being, I don't have many friends, and I definitely don't have 30 year old friends that I have kept in contact with.
I just didn't need high school to define me like so many of them did. They are still holding on to high school glory, whereas I knew the best time of my life was not then. I knew there was nothing like being an adult who took full responsibility for their actions. I couldn't wait to be a "grown up."
Now, that I am, I relish in it. This is the best time of my life. Even though I am 60 pounds heavier than I was in high school, I heard repeatedly how I looked the same. That was a good feeling, especially since so many had changed so drastically.
I like where I am right now in life. I was right to stay to myself and follow the promptings of my soul.
One of my classmates asked me if I had thought about coming back home. I asked, "What would I do?" He seemed shocked, but it was a valid question. The area is more depressed than it was 30 years ago, it most definitely has less to offer to me. I didn't see a future there back then and I definitely don't see one now.