Before going through recruitment, I had mixed feelings about being in a sorority. I always found it intriguing because, as much as I love my brother, I yearned to have a sister. At the same time, I was familiar with the stereotypes and didn't want to end up being a stuck-up, air-headed, help-I-just-broke-a-nail, foo-foo girl. Nevertheless, I decided to sign up for formal recruitment, and boy, am I glad I did. Here are 5 things I gained after joining my sorority.
1. Sisters I never had
I can't believe how quickly I became close with girls I never would've met if it weren't for joining my house. My sisters and I all have individual interests, passions, and backgrounds, yet each and every one of us love each other so well. They all inspire me with their drive, persistence, and compassion.
My sisters give me guidance, a safe space to share all of my biggest secrets and most embarrassing moments, and companionship when I need it most.
Of course, not every day is picture-perfect, but what I love about sisterhood is that at the end of the day, we know we will always have each other's backs.
2. Authentic bonds I always yearned for
My first semester of college, most of the friendships I made seemed pretty superficial. It wasn't that my friends didn't have substance; moreover, we were more friends because it was convenient. We met because we lived in the same hall, were in the same club, or had a class together. I loved these friends, but they weren't the people I felt comfortable having deep conversations with.
After joining my sorority, I found my best friends. I found both people who saw life in a similar way as me and people who offered different perspectives. I found study buddies, coffee dates, shoulders to cry on, and people to laugh with. I found people whom with I could obsess over Nutella in one moment and be talking about our biggest insecurities in the next. I found people who I could truly play my favorite music for in the car, not just some playlist I play because I think it's what other people like.
I found people who let their guards down, giving me the confidence to do the same. I found people who loved me for my authentic self.
3. A ton of new clothes
On Bid Day, Big-Little Reveal, and Initiation, I received baskets overflowing with clothes, canvases, and all sorts of fun items that had to do with my sorority and/or my school. I felt so vintage rocking a shirt from a 2002 philanthropy event, and I felt so connected to a graduated sister of mine when I put on a pin someone saved from when she ran for president of student government.
Now, I can't wait to pass on my clothes and other fun mementos to future members.
4. A sense of place
When I wanted to go to the dining hall, my first semester of college, it was so stressful trying to find people with coordinating schedules to eat with me. Once I switched to my sorority's meal plan, I didn't have to worry anymore. I could eat breakfast, lunch, or dinner any time within the dining hours and know I'd be able to sit by and talk to anyone. I always felt comfortable and accepted in my home--something I waited a long time to feel.
Even before I lived in the house, I could go over and study, lounge on a futon, or eat from the snack kitchen. I never felt alone, even if the sisters I normally spent time with weren't home. I felt such a sense of belonging in my new community. I felt needed.
5. A home away from home
I am so thankful to feel like I have a family and a purpose both in my hometown and at school. While my sorority alone is not what gave me confidence, the amazing people I met through joining my house gave me more than I could have ever asked for. As cheesy as it sounds, going Greek helped me find my home.
Almost a year after joining my house, I feel overwhelmingly thankful for each of the unbelievably empowering women I've met, and I feel even more blessed to have the privilege of calling them my sisters. They all set an amazing example of love, acceptance, and inspiration, and I hope I can give them at least half of that in return.