Friday, October 5, 2012


I remember well the day I graduated from high school.

The grass was wet from an earlier rain, my shoes with just a hint of heel were killing me, and my perfectly flipped-out hair was crushed beneath the red mortarboard.

I took my place near the start of the line, sandwiched between some of my very best friends who shared my privilege of being an honor graduate. I practiced saying my name, school choice, and major intention under my breath a few times and exhaled when I finally handed the microphone off to someone else.

Then we graduated. We moved our tassels, hung up our gowns, and enjoyed each other's company for the first time as HHS alumni. Our statuses had changed, but that was all.

I'd always been excited about my ten-year reunion. What would we look like? How many babies would my then-boyfriend and I have? Where would the exciting world of broadcast journalism take me?

Last weekend, we gathered as HHS alumni once again. Ten years after that soggy May day on the pre-turf football field. Most of you know the answers to the above questions are very different than I thought they would be. And that makes me unbelievably happy. I am madly in love with a man I barely knew then. I am blissful in my motherhood to two boys who are just the start, and I'm proud to be part of my family's business.

That being said, I looked into the faces of people I had not seen in 10 years and I felt young. I felt like the same 17-year-old girl who marched in the band with pride and loved every second of every class.

My grownup classmates and I were together night and day last weekend, remembering teenage moments and swapping baby stories. Acting 18, but feeling 28 hours later. There were so many differences about each of us - last names, occupations, locations, families. Oddly enough, though, we were still the same people.

Our statuses had changed, but that was all.

Several of my favorites are missing from the pictures below (all of the faces pictured above - I sure missed you!), but this is one fantastic group of people. These men and women have accomplished great things, many of which they had no clue about ten years ago. It was a pleasure to be counted as one of them.

After Jonathan and I drove home from the party, we peeked at our sleeping boys and I felt thankful. Thankful for the fantastic start given to me by the Hope schools. It wasn't necessarily the lessons, the classrooms, or the teachers. It was the people. The seven-year-old who spoke to me on my first day in a scary new school. The sixth-grader who giggled with me in a secret language. The teenager who could (and still can) finish my sentences.

People make you who you are and I'm grateful for the HHS Class of 2002 - those I reconnected with at the reunion and those who have been gigantic pieces of my heart since elementary school.

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