And then last month, I accidentally (that's my story and I'm sticking to it) missed a pretty major milestone, so I thought I'd make mention of it now. It's kind of hard to believe that it's possible that I can be saying it, though.
What is it? I'll let a picture speak first.
No, this isn't from my wedding day or from my senior prom. This picture was taken 25 years (*choke*) and one month ago, on June 21, 1985 . . . the day I graduated from Glen Ridge High School.
In our small town sandwiched between many other towns in northern New Jersey, we had our own school district and lots of long-standing traditions. One of the graduation traditions was that the girls wore white formals and carried red roses (I didn't have a good picture at my house tonight to show the red roses) and the guys wore tuxes with white dinner jackets and red bow-ties (can you tell our school colors were red and white?). I didn't wear a traditional cap and gown until I graduated from college, but that was fine.
Another GRHS graduation tradition was that the parents planned an all-night series of parties for the graduates, in an attempt to keep everyone safe, while being allowed to celebrate the huge event. It began with a dinner-dance at the country club (where I "gracefully" turned my ankle dancing to a Meatloaf song and ended up hobbling around for the rest of the night and for several days afterward). We then progressed to a house for a themed party (ours had something to do with the beach) and then the night ended with a pool party breakfast at another house. We had tickets to get in to each party and if anyone left a party, they weren't allowed back to that party.
I remember the parties after graduation as being a fun way to be with the whole class, regardless of the different cliques and groups that usually hung out together.
I still find it hard to believe that it has been 25 years since that night, but I guess the calendar doesn't lie. And I'm thankful to have milestones to look back on in my life because they helped to shape who I am today.