Monday, August 1, 2011

Things you learn from Facebook

I know people have varying views of Facebook. Some of my friends are proud to say they have never opened an account, others seem to be online all the time. For me, as an American expatriate living very far from my family, I found it a useful way to keep generally caught up on everyone back home - my mom and all her sisters have Facebook accounts, as do all of my six siblings - though I think my youngest sister created my middle brother's account so she could use it to send herself gifts for "Roller Coaster Kingdom" and "Cafe World". All of my dad's sibling have accounts as well, as do almost all of my cousins and some of my first cousin's once removed, my neices, my mom's cousins and other second and third cousins, my step-grandmother, my best friend since the 3rd grade, and my ex-husband and his family and friends (more on that later). Aside from them, many close family friends - mostly from church, my much loved grade school teacher's five kids, and other people I went to grade school with - and have fond memories of - are on there.

Finding old high school classmates was a mixed bag of emotions. Most of us are naturally curious about people from our pasts - what do they look like now, what have they accomplished, what do their offspring look like.

I have to admit I didn't really miss anyone from highschool aside from my best friend, but I knew her since grade school anyway, so she didn't count as one of them. But I was curious to know how the so-called "prettiest girl" looks now, and if the twin of the 'cutest' boy actually gay like I suspected (surely he should be out of the closet by now).

I am ashamed to admit that I was pleased - smugly and shallowly pleased to discover that I have aged far better than every other girl (or I guess we should call ourselves women now as we all have or will cross(ed) 40 this year - I still have a couple months to go) in my class. Almost all of them are overweight or wrinkled or grey or all three by now. I don't yet suffer from any of these problems. I know it is mean and God's probably going to teach me a lesson now and have me wake up tomorrow morning with a full head of white hair and an extra 50 pounds of lard on my ass, but I am just being honest and I think there are many of us who have been pleased to find on facebook that the girl who tormented us back in school days, called you ugly and laughed at your clothes - is now 100 lbs overweight and can only fit into oversized t-shirts and stretchy pants. I am not immune to such emotions, and you have to understand - I was decidedly uncool and often made fun of or just plain ignored by the "cool boys and girls". Smart (math nerd), shy and too poor to be nicely dressed, I was what most would call a "geek".

All that being said, I don't really hold that much of a grudge, and am willing to give most people another chance to change my opinion of them. So moving past appearances, I tried to find out more about these people - whom I saw every day for five years, sat side by side in class and yet never knew - and I discovered some of the other girls felt as out of place and lost as I did back then, that the two of my classmates I thought were gay are now"out of the closet" - one even posted a video of himself dancing in a gay pride parade in a satyr costume - which I am sure is a big shock for most of my former classmates who all came from conservative Christian families. A few are atheists now, or disillusioned agnostics, but on the other end of the spectrum, two are preachers, and one is a missionary in Japan. More than a few are teachers. Most are parents.

There is also a broadway producer amongst their ranks. Another one - the only boy who ever showed any interest in me - committed suicide a few years back after his wife screwed him over in a custody battle. Yet another's wife just died from cancer - as did one of the set of girl twins in my class. Both of the girls who got pregnant in our last year are still married to the boys who impregnated them- and quite happily it would seem. Most of the rest are happily married as well - only a few are divorced or never married, and almost all of them as it turns out -even the so called 'bad apples', bullies and mean kids in the class - are very respectable and nice people. Which just goes to show that while time may take away our looks and health it often gives us something much more valuable in return.

1 comment:

♥ααℓiα♥ said...

Facebook is perfect for ppl to creep on other ppl's lives haha!! I know myself i was spying on my old class-mates and sub7anAllah, i was picked up with the same names u were saying and actually i turned out way better than %90 of the haters :-P mashaaAllah wa tabarakAllah!!