Almost two weeks ago, LO graduated from high school. It was a denouement of sorts, what with months of emails and Facebook messages from fellow parents about upcoming activities, parties and deadlines for things. I was at the point where I numbed by the hyperventilating parents and numb about the hullabaloo. Aside from the end of year sport banquet - which felt like graduation more than anything else - LO was pretty numb too. She didn't even bother to get her ($90! WTF!) yearbook signed.
Graduation day was chilly for June and windy. My parents ran super late because their power went out. My siblings were attending, but for one reason or another didn't travel with my parents so I had to wait for them. Anyway, we could only find a crap parking spot and had to walk fast to make it into the basketball arena in time. My Mom was a little winded from the exercise as we went up into the nosebleed seats. We were settled and my Mom cried a bit when the graduates walked in - I was worried she was hurt, but she just said her emotions got to her. My siblings then arrived, but my brother and sister in law had to go take the littlest niece and nephew for a walk as they could not sit for long. The ceremony was long-winded and self-important and the administrators were all too happy to celebrate the valedictorian and student government, and neglected everyone else. I was not impressed. The only good part was that since we were in the nosebleeds with the rest of the social pariahs, we could stand up and yell for LO when her name was called. (LO was tickled by that, actually.)
After the ceremony, we ran into ex and his family as they were there. I ran into my former mother in law in the bathroom as I was accompanying my mom. I should mention that ex made a big deal about LO seeing him in the days prior and he only gave her a $200 gift card to Target as her gift. He is not paying one fucking cent for college, but I STRONGLY suspect his parents don't know that. I shit you not.
Getting outside the arena was difficult as people milled and LO ran into ex and his family first. I had to call her a few times to come and see us as my siblings and their little kids needed to leave. LO then came to see me and my family, and lo and behold, Fucky McFuckface was with her. They are apparently back together. We took pictures and my parents went to my place afterwards. LO and I chatted with them until midnight as they didn't want to go out for dinner. After they left, LO and I went to the diner for a very late meal.
A few days after graduation (and hanging at McFuckface's house before he left for a job at a very remote summer camp) LO went with her girlfriends to Senior Week down in Ocean City, Maryland. LO and her $sport teammates had a long week with many stories (boys, getting kicked out of a party held by the "popular" kids, getting invited to parties held by seniors from other schools, etc.) LO said she had no desire to go back to OCMD ever due to the incessant catcalling and shitty landlord, but the girls were complimented for their maturity several times by vacationing adults. As LO said, "We were not that crazy!" I think the teammates appreciated the one last stand together before they go their separate ways.
LO also was thankful that she avoided the one beach house with her two crazy girlfriends and their 6 other crazy friends, as those girls were cited at some ill-advised party held blocks away. I should mention that one of the girls cited was the SAME DAUGHTER OF THE SPORTS CLUB LEADER WHO WAS CITED ON PROM NIGHT. (So hahaha, insecure, gossipy woman who directly made my life uncomfortable these past few years...once is a childish mistake, twice is a fucking parenting fail.)
I spent the week LO was gone decompressing from it all. There were a lot of emotions for me to process.
LO has been back from the beach for a few days and is now looking for a job since she doesn't leave for school for another two months. She also needs spending money. It's going to be a long 8 weeks with LO impatiently waiting for the next chapter to start.
The job situation has improved somewhat and I'm starting a consulting gig next week. Very long story short, when the startup was failing last fall, I reconnected with a salesguy we tried to recruit earlier. He was also looking for a job. A few weeks ago, he contacted me asking if I was still looking. As it turns out, he now has a gig with a software company based in NJ and wants to bring me on as a consultant for marketing as they are still fundraising. The company is located in a worn office building two miles from my old college dorm, which is equal parts wondrous and odd for me. I was up there just before LO's graduation interviewing with the executive team and it felt like home. Maybe I am just a jersey girl after all.
Aside from the fundraising issues, there are some cultural issues with grafting sales onto a smart but curmudgeonly developer driven, software based org. I am so nerdy, the technical guys seemed to like me. The one concern I have is that the existing sales/biz dev guy is very obviously worried he's going to lose his job. He's also in the process of moving his family from India. I was told he was definitely staying, and I could work with him, but who knows what shit he might pull to save what he thinks his job should be. I did get a lot of "he doesn't know what you know yankeehack" from the exec team. At least, he will need to be managed.
It doesn't look like I will need to move to Jersey as the salesguy who is bringing me in lives near me, but I almost want to keep my options open. We'll see.
The other piece of Jersey news is that one of my high school classmates killed himself this past weekend. He is the first of our class to die, and was part of the same social group. It is deeply shocking and sad. I haven't seen him in 20 odd years, but we kept in touch via FB for a while. He was a good guy, kind of a troublemaker when young as his home life was hard, but he straightened out. His last few years were tumultuous - two young kids, stressful divorce, new girlfriend, then pics all over FB about the new girlfriend. He married the new girl a few months ago, but by then we had been unfriended. (I checked his FB and he had unfriended nearly everyone we knew - except for three mutual friends - I couldn't tell you when or why.) According to her posts, she didn't suspect anything. He sent her flowers and a note the night before saying he wanted to be with her forever.
I grew up with him. He was a good person. A part of the tribe is now gone. That's all I have.
Update [2016-6-21 14:57:17 by yankeehack]: Got a whiff of the dysfunctional family situation this morning, which I had totally forgotten about. (Back in the 90s we would call it merely a "dysfunctional family" because dad had finally left and the beatings stopped. I remember his younger brother talking about it.) Let's just put it this way, today there's no nobel laureates or workers in the financial district or even state college grads in that family.
To be fair, this family in particular is a multi-generational, mired in the working class (at best) edge case for the affluent town we grew up in.
Somewhat relatedly, I nearly went into a 25+ year overdue rage over a passive-aggressive socially awkward dude who anointed himself a gatekeeper of the larger social group. When I was in high school, he was the weird dude who had long graduated, but hung out at the high school because he was friends with the teacher who ran the department. That dude who would help out at everything to be useful, and would mysteriously hint about secrets he couldn't tell you.
Fast forward to today, where he never left the area, doesn't have a family, and works some sort of shitty dead end job. He still will hang out with the younger high school friends (he had a preferred group) and act as an uncle to their kids, but he complains that everyone has gotten busy.
Of course he's an FB group admin for the alumni group. And you have to be connected with him on FB to learn any news. He deleted my post (even though someone else approved it) - it was a link to a news article - and then he had to post his own thoughts.
If people weren't fucking openly grieving, I'd fucking go after him for deleting the link. Most of us aren't living in the area and people from different classes are not necessarily connected as friends on FB. Who the fuck has time to look for news if they don't know?
But anyway...now I'm annoyed again and frustrated...funny how high school stirs up these dormant feelings.
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