Wondering About the Wonder Years

28 10 2009

Years ago I clicked through on an email from Classmates.com and out of curiosity I signed up for an account. Since then I receive an email just about every day with updates on my former classmates. They write notes, they upload pictures, they post new events, they update their bios. They do lots of things, and I get emails letting me know that I can login to Classmates.com and see what’s going on.  Here’s the thing. I have no idea who most of these people are.

I was not exactly a popular person in high school, and it went beyond being a member of the freaks and geeks. I was so beyond freak or geek that even they didn’t really accept me into their crew. As a very young child I was painfully shy, and I wasn’t much better as a teenager. So I hung out alone, and I phoned it in. I really just wanted to get out of high school and get started with college already, so much so that I registered for the summer session and got started with my first couple college classes a good month before I graduated from high school. You can’t be more eager to leave a place than that.

I’m not saying I had no friends. I just had very few, and I’m not in touch with any of them now. But hey, life goes on, and I can’t say I have any deep regrets over my high school experience. In spite of this I can’t help sometimes seeing these emails and wondering what my life would be like if I was popular or if I did make friends that I’m still friendly with today. If I wasn’t such a geeky loner, maybe I’d know how to work the system a little better now and make more money. And maybe I’d have more friends as an adult. On the other hand, I probably would be so…well let’s just say I probably wouldn’t be such an “individual.” After so many years I’ve kind of grown to like my “individuality.”

Really, no regrets, but I was always a sucker for those Choose Your Own Adventure books and I do have a very geeky obsession with the time-space continuum. So I wonder almost obsessively at times how the different decisions and actions we make in our lives ultimately affect the outcome.

I think what I mostly wonder about however is what Azita’s high school experience will turn out to be. I know she’s not even a year old, and I’m already thinking about her teenage years. This is the point where Roger usually rolls his eyes at me, but I swear I’m not worrying or being compulsive in any way. I’m just being curious. Will she be a nerd like me? A cool kid like her baba? A jock? A theater geek? Maybe she will defy categorization.

I don’t know, and I don’t know if I wish for any of the above. When I think about Azita in high school, I hope she has a different experience than mine. I hope she’s well-liked, but doesn’t feel or give in to the pressure to be popular. I hope she can enjoy high school and make some life-long friends but continues to form lasting friendships afterwards. I hope that those years are just the launching point for a wonderful life and not the high point. I hope that she learns to love learning but that she also picks up the skills to be comfortable in social situations. I hope so many things, but most of all I hope that when she reaches the ripe old age of her maman she can look back on her youth with fondness but so very glad to be exactly where she is.

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