By Sandra Cohen and Roger Cormier

Ever since he received an emailed invitation to a round-numbered high school reunion more than two years ago, Roger resisted participation in such an event. His excuse for not attending was geographical unfeasibility. However, he enjoyed reports about it, reconnected with a few former classmates via email, and found himself intrigued by the prospect of fine tuning travel plans earlier last month to be at this year’s non-round reunion. And so it happened.

Following are some values he experienced from the reunion luncheon:

*  He was surprised by how easily he got over everyone looking far older than the yearbook photos on their name tags.

*  Although he had not stayed in touch with any classmates for decades and none of his high school compadres attended the luncheon, he found everyone at his table to be vibrant and happy to share common interests and experiences, in this case largely about the challenges and joys of international living and travel.

* He was glad to be reminded that anyone can lead an interesting and contributory life, whether they are perceived as movers and shakers or more reserved and seemingly less involved at an earlier time in their lives.

* He is grateful for the opportunity to look back over and feel good about his career accomplishments and contributions, and for the appreciation that several classmates expressed for the meaningful yearbook that he had co-edited and that has served as a resource for reunion planning.


When something triggers a review of and/or reconnection with a part of our past, we can gain such values as these:

* Reconciliation with a regret, an estrangement or negligence that has carried over to our current life.

* Inspiration to appreciate and contribute more to our own personal and the greater world.

* Reconnection with people, purposes and talents that may reinforce our best intentions for ourselves and the spheres of our interest.

* Renewed appreciation for our accomplishments and contributions to some extent made possible by what people and institutions in our past gave to us.

Roger left the reunion luncheon with some tips about how to use the MagicJack phone for international communication; more travel destinations to consider; a new sense of pride about how he carried forward developing talents from high school to his career and now to such retirement involvements as writing this blog; and a good feeling about the rich, vibrant lives his former classmates continue to live.

Living in the past deprives us of a meaningful current life. However, revisiting parts of our pasts can renew our appreciation for all that has been given to us, all we have given back and all that is to come.