Most of us are blessed enough to not be remembered by everyone in the class. Yes, we had embarrassing moments, we had unfortunate moments, but in all likelihood, no one else remembers those awful moments as clearly as we do ourselves.
It's a little different when it comes to the popular girls on the ladder's top rung. Everyone remembers them. Some (mostly guys) may have been oblivious at the time to the power this group held over the rest of the girls in the class, but everyone remembers them. There are many moments that the popular girls may not remember, but that are frozen in time for the girls they hurt. We may not even remember many specifics, but we remember the feelings they generated. We remember the pain they caused our friends. We remember the attitudes that we found so offensive.
What we forget is that a combination of time and life experience changes most people for the better. We know we have changed. We see the changes in the classmates with whom we have kept in touch. We look around and are amazed at what incredible people they have become.
Meanwhile, we assume those at the very top of the ladder are still snarky 16-year-old girls, frozen in time along with our memories of them. We don't give them credit for changing. Naturally, they sense that. So it's understandable if they tend to stick to the safety of their group at class reunions. They know they formed reputations for themselves as teenagers that are difficult to overcome as adults. So when it appears difficult for them to reach out beyond their inner circle, perhaps that's our opportunity to reach out to them. Perhaps that's the sign that it's time to forget who was popular and who wasn't and just be glad to see everyone together, remembering good times.
By middle-age, the power base in most classes has not just shifted, it has evaporated. The footing becomes much more equal, as the ladder has been thrown out.
Which is as it should be. Ladders are dangerous, especially near the top.
Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. ~ Colossians 3:13