A couple weeks ago I attended my 30 year high school reunion. It brought back so many good memories of growing up in Santa Clara. Back in the 60's and 70's it seemed like life was so much simpler and less stressful. Of course there was just as much stress back then, but I was in elementary school and my parents kept us sheltered from the stress. That's really what a parent's role is - to create a nurturing environment for the children to learn, grow, and thrive. It's like a farmer that tends the soil, removes the rocks, prays for rain, provides water/fertilizer, and watches out for bugs. My parents immigrated to the US from Taiwan in their mid-age, so that us children would have a better life. My father was a professor, while my mother baby-sat to provide for the family.
At the reunion, the old friends have less hair, more weight, and poor eyesight. They gave us name tags with small fonts, so everyone was leaning in and squinting to read the name on the name tags. "Oh my - it's Mark!" as someone finally recognizes the person in front of them. We laughed, we shared about our families, we cried for the ones that had already passed away. Yes, I guess we are getting old enough when some friends are beginning to pass away. Lots of mid-life crisis with divorces and career changes. I have had my share of losses with my brother and parents passing away since the last reunion. It's true that no one is immune to calamities and each life has its share of good as well as bad times. It was great to see old friends, because we know now how special childhood can be when your parents create a nurturing environment for you to grow. We have our own children now so we know that life isn't stress free, but we also work hard to provide a safe place for our children to grow.
The Buchser High School Class of '79 will always have a special place in my heart. It was great to see old friends and laugh.