Reunions of any kind stay with you…at least they should. You’ve just been with people, whether it’s family or classmates or just a couple of friends, who played some part in your past. Memories have been triggered that may have been buried for years. You start remembering the faces of those who didn’t come and those who are gone forever. It’s a fast moving slide show of images in your mind…good, bad, blurred. Some come sharply into focus and you go back in time.

Time moves so fast and everyone is so busy that it’s a jolt to our system to go backwards, to see how we were then vs how we are now. Everyone has a journey, a story that has earned us those lines in our faces, those gray or lost hairs, those limps and afflictions. I say that anyone who reaches my age without some baggage hasn’t had much of a trip.

A reunion has been an upheaval of your ordinary routine. All of a sudden you want to hang on to the faces, the conversations, the warm afterglow of the event. You exchange email addresses, phone numbers, and promise to keep in touch. You exchange photos to keep as memories. And then you go back to whatever you were doing before. The reunion becomes such a sweet memory, one that will fade like all the others into the background of the everyday.


The difference today after my 50th high school reunion is that we realize our time is shorter and we have more life behind us than ahead of us. Relationships are more precious as we lose more and more of our past ones each year. The good news is that we can hang on to them more easily these days. There are emails, website, SKYPE, Facebook, and phones that are with us at all times. We’ve never been able to stay so connected. We’re retiring and, hopefully, have some time to visit friends or travel together…at least for awhile. I’m connected to my 92 year old Latin teacher by email so there’s hope we can all be functioning that well when/if we reach that age.

The truth is that we are facing a future that really doesn’t look so fun. Our parts are wearing out, all of them. No matter how well we maintain them, there is a built-in obsolescence factor in us. That makes it even more critical to not put off the things we promise ourselves we are going to do. Our bucket list should include staying in contact with our past and our present friends and family as much as we can. No excuses with all the technology we have now and with what promises to come. Even as we lose our abilities, there are means being developed to help us adjust to our new state of life.

We shouldn’t have to be alone as we age. I’m sure we’ve all found that the people we connect to most deeply, the ones who are the greatest comfort, are usually the ones who are our age, who have shared the same years on this planet. We have friends and family who are older or younger, but their experience is not the same as those who lived the same life span as we did. Truthfully, connections are what keep us alive. Healthy people have healthy relationships they value and they connect with everything around them…nature, people, their inner spirit.

You see…reunions of any kind make me wax philosophical (what does that mean anyway?). I’m hoping for the connections to continue, for the party spirit to live on. It’s a damn shame to lose all the vitality of those connections when we don’t have to. No excuses…stay connected.