A Hometown Reunion of Sorts

When I got ready for church this morning, I spent extra time on my hair. I cursed my makeup for not doing a better job covering the two pimples on my cheek, and asked Lee for the fifth time if my outfit looked okay.
At 10:30, my parents arrived to pick us up. We were in Fitzgerald, staying with Lee’s mom, and going with my folks back to my old church. My mom and dad were in town for a special service, so we came into town too so we could see them.
I hadn’t set foot in that church for 2 and a half years – not since my parents moved to Tennessee. I have good memories of the church, but I’d always felt it would be too weird to attend a service without my dad in the pulpit.
We pulled into the church parking lot at about 10:32 (it’s a really small town), and couldn’t get in the door without stopping to greet old friends along the way. It was good to see many of them, but I felt a little nervous like I imagine I’ll feel at my high school reunion later this year. I hoped to make a good impression on the old hometown folks – and not have them wondering, “what happened to that girl?”
Two of my old high school friends were there, which was a surprise since they both moved out of town after graduation. It was good to see them, but a little awkward. After the traditional, “How are you? Where are you living now? What are you doing?” there wasn’t much else to say. So much time had passed since I’d seen them last.
But one thing was oddly comforting. The church hadn’t changed at all. The same red carpet. The same wood paneling. The same choir robes. It was unnerving to see the new pastor up at the front, but that was the only thing that seemed different.
It’ll probably be another 2 years or longer before I attend church there again, and I’m sure I’ll remember even fewer names and faces. But it’s nice to be reminded of your past, while also appreciating the new people and places you’ve discovered since.