Twenty years have passed since I graduated from high school and despite all I have achieved, I can’t help but feel like an outsider. I gladly refused an invite to cocktails last night with old acquaintances, choosing instead to tidy up our clutter-filled home and hang out with my toddler. Blues has started working the night shift so my little one and I are a duo until his weekends(which come every 7 working days.) I could have gotten the grandparents to babysit but they will care for her tonight and this workweek looks to be filled with evening commitments. But I didn’t need the alibi. I simply didn’t want to go.
It is empowering to choose solitude. It’s very different than being purposefully left out as in decades past. Maybe my peers sensed my need to have my own space. Or maybe they were just being kids. I hold no grudges. I’ll be happy to chitchat with any of them at tonight’s 20- year class reunion. But I’ll be equally happy on my little corner of the dance floor or laughing it up with my one best friend from high school. I know who I am now. I can only hope my daughter makes that discovery in less than two decades.