Surviving Your High School Reunion: Why You Should Go

By Tawny Weber

Romy and Michele's High School ReunionYou remember high school, right? Ahhh, the good old days.  Prom, study period, that cutie in science class, not to mention palpitating heart, sweaty palms, raging hormones. . .

A definitive time in anyone’s life: a time some desperately miss, and a few are still vicariously living in—whereas other are thrilled to leave behind.

If you fall in this latter category, then, seriously, you should be the first to RSVP to your high school reunion.

Nope, I’m not joking. It’s the best way to address all those unresolved emotions that come churning to the top when that class reunion invitation shows up in the mail.

So, how do you go back and have a great time, without getting stuck in some negative blast from the past?

First by setting aside the triumphs and tragedies of high school. Then follow these five easy tips and have the class reunion you deserve: one with memories you’ll actually want to remember…

1. Act like you’ve made it – even if you haven’t.
Confidence is its own seduction.  Now, that doesn’t mean pulling a Romy and Michelle — that is, pretending to be someone you’re not, to impress those who once put you down. Whether you’re a CEO or a manicurist, be proud of yourself. Sure, maybe you’re not where you said you’d be when you graduated.  But if you pitch it right, people will think you’re exactly where you want to be now.  Think of it this way, if you go to your reunion with your tail between your legs, acting like a loser, that’s how people will perceive you.  If you go back filled with confidence and pride in yourself and whatever you happen to be doing, people will see a winner aka:  Someone happy and satisfied.

2. Dress to Thrill – yourself.
Half of the fun of a reunion is the girly stuff.  You know, mani-pedis, fresh highlights, a makeover at the MAC counter and a fab reunion wardrobe.  But keep in mind, years have passed and even if you still wear the same size you did when you graduated, wearing the same clothes is a big OMG NO!  If you want to make an impression, in a good way, dress to thrill your body, and your age.  Don’t borrow your daughter’s clothes just because you’re the same size.  And don’t try to shove yourself into a size that doesn’t fit, just to wear a number.  Best bet?  Hit a department store that has a personal shopper and make her your best friend.  Or bring your best-and most vocally honest-friend.  Talk styles, events, budget and find clothes that thrill you when you look in the mirror.

3. Leave your baggage in the past.
If you’re thinking the reunion is the perfect time to get revenge for some long-past insult, think again.  As much fun as it is to relive old times, you’ll be much better off if see this as a fresh start.  Or if the hurts go too deep, just remember, you’re going to the reunion for YOU, not for anyone else.  If you’re there to make an impression or to prove something to someone – refer back to tip #1.  Being confident and happy is its own best revenge, after all.  Remember that saying – ‘Smile – it makes people wonder what you’re up to.’

4. Keep your options—and your mind—open.
Cheerleader, jock, geek.  Leave the labels in the past.  A lot has happened in the last decade or so.  Hit the reunion with an open mind.  Visit with everyone, even if you didn’t hang out with them in school.  That cheerleader you were intimidated by could be a sweetheart with a purseload of parenting tips.  And the geek your friends snubbed might still be desperately shy and need a friendly face.

5. Relax— for better or worse, its only one night –not four years.
Unlike graduation, your future doesn’t hinge on this reunion.  You’re here to have a good time, check in with old buddies and maybe make a few new friends.  Look at it as a good time with a guestlist of people who remember the days when MTV played music videos and Prince was still Prince.  It’s a party –have a great time!

Novelist Tawny Weber is usually found dreaming up stories in her California home, surrounded by dogs, cats and kids.  When she’s not writing hot, spicy stories for Harlequin Blaze, she’s shopping for the perfect pair of boots or drooling over Johnny Depp pictures (when her husband isn’t looking, of course).  Her next book, Dressed to Thrill, a fun, four-author costume shop continuity with her release of FEELS LIKE THE FIRST TIME.  In January 2010, look for her novella, YOU HAVE TO KISS A LOT OF FROGS, is out in the Blazing Bedtime Story Volume III and come by and visit her on the web at www.tawnyweber.com

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