Tonight I step out of my comfort zone--the land west of HWY 85--and stepped into a place I try not to go very often: Brighton, CO.
I guess I'm there almost every Monday to pick up my three sisters from school. But I drive my parents' car, zoom up Buckley, zip west on Southern, grab two of them and high tail it east on Southern, snag the other, and get outta town as fast as possible.
I have no idea.
Ever since I left for college, I've avoided Brighton.
Again, I have no idea.
Well, I have some ideas.
Seriously, what is it with high school? It is really such a short time in our lives as a whole, but oh the impact that it makes. And I had a great high school experience--good friends, nice boyfriend, great drama and choir programs ... successful overall. So what's the big deal about delving back into that circle?
I'm sure I'm remembered as aloof, self righteous, pretty quiet, and somewhat dramatic.
And guess what--it's probably because I am. I was, and I still am. Difference is, now I've recognized it, and I'm okay with it.
As I sat tonight with a friend and chatted quietly (covering topics as different as God and wine, MySpace [and why we both have an inability to let go of our profiles, even though we don't use it, can't remember our log ins and haven't changed our picture in years!!] and my Mom's strong coffee), I mentioned to her that, here I was again, probably appearing aloof. And she said, "Well, we are!"
High school shapes us. It begins to define us--either for good or for bad. I'm sure there are people who have strong memories of me--for good or for bad. Some people probably don't even remember me at all. Some people remember me as "the short girl who had a wheely backpack", some more might know me as Michael's older sister and most people probably remember me as "Conor's girlfriend".
But that's not who I am--and I think that's why it's so hard to go back to Brighton. I'm not who I was--and I'm definitely not the person people remember me to be.
It's good to go back and break the barrier--to realize that we all just want to connect, to relive fond memories, and share new experiences. So, here's to a new me--a me who (hopefully) doesn't get a knot in her stomach every time she makes a run to Brighton.