The Chicago Bulls were about to win their first of six NBA championships. George H.W. Bush would be elected President in a matter of months. And my son was going off to Syracuse University.
And now here we are. His 25th high school reunion a few weeks away.
He’s almost a middle aged man. And I’m . . . well, I’m en route to a senior citizens’ home. Still, my memory is in tact, and the details of my 25th reunion are as “fresh” as I was at the time.
I strutted into the Friday evening party like a diva about to prance on stage. All gussied up in a white pant suit and a black stretchy halter top. No bra required. (My, how things have changed!)
For me, the reunion validated the person I’d become. A teacher turned writer. A wife for the second time around. A mother of a teenager who was . . . okay, so I didn’t have that one down yet but was really, really trying. (That Parent Effectiveness Training workshop I took didn’t always do the trick.)
And now that teenager is all grown up. I wonder how he’ll feel when he walks into the Friday night cocktail party. Pleased with the path his journey has taken? Unfulfilled? Just damn happy to be alive? (Did I mention the automobile accident in which he drove his car into a tree, broke his back and just missed severing his spine?)
It’s been a wild ride for him and for me. (BTW, it was his dad’s new Lexus that he totaled.)
It’s hard to fathom that it’s been twenty-five years since my son managed to get his high school diploma and waltzed off to Syracuse University. I remember crying every time I passed his empty bedroom or heard a song he loved.
Then about three weeks in, I woke up and realized that I was free—free from pushing him to finish his homework, filling out college applications, making curfew, not driving into another tree.
(In retrospect, the joke was on me. I wasn’t really free. “Out of sight, out of mind” didn’t apply.)
Where has the time gone? Twenty-five years and counting. Each day here and gone faster than the one before.
Hopefully, I’ll be around for my son’s 50th high school reunion. If not, I hope he has one hell of a good time!