Monday, September 26, 2011

Thinking Out Loud

I thought summer was pretty hectic, turns out Fall is even more so! Why does it seem like there are multiple events happening on the same weekends? Makes it so hard to decide what to do, which to attend, which is more important, which would be fun for the kids. Most of the time though, money is the deciding factor-- entrance fees? gas? eating out?

This coming weekend is my high schools' Homecoming and an informal 20th class reunion (20 years? No way!). My high school was sort of an international school-- students came from all over the country, some from other countries.  Kind of makes it hard to get together for reunions when many of us are all spread out, as opposed to a local school and say, 75% of the students still live in the area.

We had a 10-year reunion, which had a pretty good turn-out. But only because there was a major event happening and most of us were coming into town anyway. This year, however, it's just a plain ol' Homecoming game. A lot of classmates are pushing for a cruise for our 25th reunion. Honestly? I'll probably never go on a cruise of my own choosing, preferring to travel by car or train to my destination, fly if I have to, but a cruise? No thanks. Too expensive and just not my thing. So why would I cough up big dough for a class reunion held on a ship? Did we graduate on the ship? I still have small children to think of-- 5 years from now, Peter will be 8;  my children will not be grown up and out of the house and I'm high on the hog with money to spare. I'd rather see the old school and all the changes that have been done. Several of the dorms have been torn down and new things have happened, I'd like to see that in person, not go on a ship in the middle of the ocean.

I planned on going to the Homecoming, but then I realized it's the same night as the shopping night for consignors at the consignment store. I worked my tail off gathering all the too-small, or fits-but-no-one-will-wear-it clothing, washed them, hung them on hangers, tagged and priced them, then took them to the shop to be scanned in by hand. Do you know what kind of miracles had to be performed just to accomplish all that with 4 children underfoot? What kind of sleep I gave up? Before we got there, I had told myself that there wouldn't be any shopping this year-- we can't afford it, definitely won't take the kids in or we'll never hear the end of their begging for something that's not a necessity.  But then, while there, I looked around and I saw a few things-- winter shoes for the kids (they can't wear flip-flops forever!), a set of books for our book-loving Evelyn, and even a few items that could be put away for Christmas, if I can get it before anyone else does.  Surely we can manage to scrounge up enough to purchase a few items. Consignment store prices aren't that high!

What's more important-- things our children need/want?  Or going to a Homecoming where only 10 or 15 of my class show up? I'm already heavily leaning to the first choice, and at the same time, the whiny girl inside me reallllly wants to go, no matter who will be there. I know for a fact that my friend from since 6th grade will be there, and a close friend is coming down for it. Some classmates that'd I'd really like to see aren't coming-- they live too far away, but swear that they'll come for the 25th cruise (rolling my eyes).  Don't really care about the others... yes, it'd be good to see them and at the same time-- eh, who cares. In all these years, since the 10th reunion, I've only kept in contact, close contact, as in talk-at-least-once-a-month contact, with maybe 5 school mates.

I feel like going to the Homecoming is selfish. I'd be driving 3 hours to go to DC, spend a couple hours hugging people I know but don't like enough to keep in touch with, repeating the same "here's what I've been up to lately" story over and over, fielding comments like, "yup, 4 kids! Who would have thunk it!" and "No, sorry, you don't know my husband, he's hearing" (it's a Deaf thing, to always ask who your spouse is, maybe they'll know him/her). It's nothing official, no plans in place to meet at a certain location, no eating arrangements, except a tentative maybe "let's go to the bar down the street", of which I'll bow out of, since I have to drive, and no idea who will actually be there since no one seems to be replying to the class Facebook page.

Yeah, it's more likely I won't go. I'll have to send an email to my 6th grade friend and gracefully bow out of attending.  My family comes first. I can't see making things more financially difficult for us by spending money on a 6 hour trip to see people that can't be bothered to reply to a simple request. And if I don't really care about seeing them, one way or the other, then why would I want to go in the first place? There. Problem solved.

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