Friday, July 20, 2007

A Decade of Living

I am just a few hours away from a series of events that have been on my calendar for ten years. It was in June of 1997 that I graduated high school and it is this weekend that I have returned to Cleveland for my first class reunion. Last night on the plane I looked out the window and saw nothing but darkness. There was nothing there but the sky. I found myself in a quiet and reflective space.

I thought of all the good times I had in high school and all of the bad. But more than experiences I thought about the people that I shared those experiences with. While there is a small collective of friends from high school, some of them actually date back to elementary school, that I meet up with every year on Christmas Eve the vast majority of my classmates I have had no contact with at all since the night we commenced our post high school lives. Over the years I have wondered about some of them. I have wondered where they were and what they were doing. This weekend I anticipate finding out some answers to those questions.

While I pray most things I hear will make me smile. I must catch myself and remember that this is not a time to judge. It isn’t for me to approve or disapprove of someone else’s story to date. I of all people should be more conscious of that. I am very aware of my home community of East Cleveland and I am learning to be respectful of those who remained here. This place is the very springboard from which I began to take flight. What I believe to be what is best and progression is simply that – what I believe.

Inevitably, I thought to myself last night, someone who I haven’t talked to in a decade will ask me what have I been up to over the years. In serenity, I decided that my answer would be: living. It is true. I have been blessed and since the moment my name was called and I walked across the stage to receive my embattled high school diploma I have spent the next ten years living life and learning. It has been incredible and I am extremely grateful for the opportunities that have lent themselves to me on my journey. So, I figure responding by saying living will really be the best way to encapsulate so much.

Tonight I’ll be glad to see and touch those who I haven’t in so long. I hope they’ve all been living in their own way too.