Last weekend I traveled up to New York for a reason that drew a few eyebrows when I mentioned it to people. It was the 40th reunion of my sixth grade class. Although, in my mind it was a reunion classmates I’d known since kindergarten or first grade, because our elementary school was organized in such a way that we pretty much were with the same kids every year, and we became like a family – a large one!
Before I went, I wondered if meeting these people, who I’d only known as children, would be awkward. Would we stand around inquiring politely about one another’s careers and families, after which an uncomfortable silence would descend crushingly upon the party because, after all, we really had nothing in common anymore and therefore nothing to say.
If I had worried about that – boy would I have been wrong! Last weekend was as close to perfect as a weekend could be. From the moment my best friend from those days picked me up at the airport, to the moment we hugged and said goodbye, the days passed in a thrilling headwind of excitement, discovery, affection, and well…just sheer joy. I discovered many of us really did still have things in common, and in each of my old schoolmates remained something of the child I had known. Being together again felt so natural, so easy. It was truly an experience of reconnection, but also of newly forged connections and friendships. Because let’s face it, weren’t there kids in grade school you hardly ever talked to? There were for me, but I came away from NY with new dear friends along with old dear friends. You really can go back, if you go with an open mind and an open heart and a smile on your face.
- To kick off the reunion, A few of us met for a walking tour of our old neighborhood…