This weekend is pretty exciting, but is also making me very anxious. Am I the same awkward goober that I was as a kid? Do I still make most of my decisions based on what others will think of me?

I think I’ve come a long way. I feel comfortable in my skin, maybe even a little more each day. But the upcoming weekend is letting doubts loose upon my ego.

You see, I didn’t know how to handle myself as a kid. I didn’t know how to deal with teasing, my feelings of isolation, my need for connection and kind touch, and later as puberty struck, all of the crap that came along with that. Then there was the belief I held that I was all alone in my feelings and discomfort with the situation in the Foundation and that I was perverted in my feelings towards girls. Sadly, I thought I was the only one both in the Foundation and in the world going through what I was experiencing, and nobody really cared enough to find that out and tell me differently.

Combine all of that bottled awkwardness with my old propensity for telling tall tales and I have pretty negative memories of the kind of person I was as a young fella.

Now we’re planning a reunion for us self-dubbed ‘orphans’, and I’ve actually been one of the people pushing for it. Props to Carragh Glover for planning the logistics of our two-day get-together. I’ve been pushing for this reunion mainly because I’ve been unable to attend other events where my old pseudo-siblings have gathered, like weddings etc. So this is my way of trying to reconnect better with these folks whom I love quite dearly.

I haven’t seen some of these folks in over ten years. I need to not go into this weekend with expectations of how they will see me or how I will see them. I need to be me.

Anyway, the reunion is coming up this Friday through Sunday. My plan is to relax, listen to everybody talk, and just love everyone.

I’ll let you know how it goes.

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Jared Garrett

Author of the Beat Series

Orphan Reunion