Does Facebook Enhance or Hinder One’s College Reunion Experience!? Hail Facebook!

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To be completely honest, sorry Mary & Carolyn, I was going to bail a couple days leading up to my 10 year… gulp…college reunion. Everyday there was another email from someone in my group who was no longer coming. Man, safety in numbers..now it was down to 3!

One of my closest friends is pregnant, and didn’t want to basically be stuck in bars all day with drunk people. I don’t blame her. How horrible would that be. My other friend lives in Atlanta, and couldn’t come, and one had to work. Ugh.

I wasn’t friends with most people who were going, so why bother and I hate awkward conversations and talking about work and I am bad with remembering names too. But my 3 girlfriends were going…and I love spending time with them, so what the heck, although I hate the drive, and I knew the drive home was going to SUCK…which it did (4 hours driving with an extreme hangover). My expectations were pretty low based on my college experience. Catholic University is a good school, but the facilities were fair at best, the food sucked, and the gym aka hallway had one stationary bike and a rowing machine. Pathetic. They wanted 60 bucks for the homecoming tent party, I was baffled by that as I could not imagine what they would be serving us? I had visions of chicken skewers and chardonnay.

I already know which of my former classmates spent their postgraduate years in advanced degree programs at impressive schools, those who moved to the west coast, etc, who works on wall street, etc. I’ve seen photographs of college friends homes, nights out, endless albums of wedding receptions and babies.

Should we blame or thank Facebook for this? The social networking tool first became available to my class several years after we graduated from college. We did have that application called MYspace…towards the end of our senior year…it was cutting edge!

We all know how Facebook has become our gateway for reconnecting with childhood friends, vetting future employees and connecting with potential love interests, not to mention checking on former rivals, spouses, siblings and old fizzled out flames.

But it’s also deflated some of the mystery of returning to collegiate stomping grounds and seeking out random people you were roommates with, that you knew from the sports team you were on, and that weird girl in the dining hall who was always was getting multiple full cups of frozen yogurt, because you know, it was “fat-free.”

Facebook absolutely helps you stay current with not only close friends but with third-level aquiantences and it does give people an opportunity to stay connected with their college.

So as much as I was on the verge of opting out of my college reunion, it was Facebook that got be excited in the couple of days leading up. Sending messages back and forth with people you haven’t seen in 10 years, and it feeling completely normal, as thought you saw them yesterday, was comforting in a way, nostalgic, and exciting.

Long story short, I had the best weekend ever. It completely exceeded my expectations, and although my group of friends were the biggest group of partiers at the largest Catholic university in the US, I have to say it was money well spent ( thanks mom and dad). Catholic University produced quality people, nurses, teachers, engineers, architects, who are all doing very well for themselves.

But most importantly, coming back and reuniting after 10 years of different life experiences, from jobs, no jobs, kids, no kids, marriage, no marriage, travel, deaths, advanced degrees and hardships, we come back with the same qualities that brought us together 10 years ago, people with good values, ethics, compassion, positivity, humor and zest for life. Oh, and it’s so comforting to know that everyone still has the same zest for beer, wine, sugary drinks and debauchery. It’s funny remembering this weekends conversations and them being so ridiculously different than the ones you had with that person 10 years ago. I discussed the benefits of a gluten free diet with someone who was on the school football team back in the day. So weird.

Until next time.

Namaste

Andrea

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