I've been thinking about sororities a lot lately. I was a Tri Delt in college. Then for many years I didn't think about my sorority affiliation at all. Well, maybe once or twice. I met a wild party gal at a big event many years ago; she seemed to be the center of all things social in our city. We were at the same table (a large one with a lot of people) and exchanged the usual polite small talk: 'do you live in town? where do you work? where did you go to school?' and somewhere in the mix one of us mentioned our Tri Delta affiliation and we then bonded immediately over our shared sisterhood. She became a close friend. She's settled w/kids now and living in the mid west and I wonder if she has done the same thing that I've done: Joined the sorority alumnae club.
Let me start by saying that I have been enjoying my sorority alumnae club immensely. I am so inspired talking with the alum's who, in their 80's now, were the women that paved the way for my generation to be more than 50% of college students. And I love that they are active and having fun. I am energized by the younger women, just a few years out of school and already so accomplished. Hanging out with them makes me feel younger, while hanging out with the older alums gives me a great sense of pride and tradition. And, I've become friends with a really nice woman around my own age who has a young daughter, about the same age as the baby girl that my husband and I are trying to adopt. She has been such a great support and so fun to spend time with.
But, I have to confess that I had a selfish reason for reconnecting with my sisterhood. RUSH! Not mine, but my daughter-to-be's. (not to mention my cherished niece who will be entering college in less than 4 years in the SOUTH where sorority recruitment is absolutely BRUTAL!) I have to protect these girls, my niece and my daughter-to-be. I have to do everything that I can to make sure they don't get their hearts broken if they don't receive a bid to 'the best' house on campus. Now I know this is a lot of ego and pride talking, but Tri Delt does appear to be one of the stronger chapters at most of the campuses where there is a chapter. As silly as it may seem now, I do remember sorority rush and how all important it was, how my entire college life would - it seemed to me at the time - just be over if I didn't 'get into' either Tri Delt or Kappa. In retrospect, I think I would have been every bit as happy in any of the sororities on my campus. I became good friends with girls in many different sororities and they were all really nice. And, I would have had a great college life if I had not pledged a sorority at all. But those are things I know now. Then, it was all important. It just may be all important in 4 years for my niece, and in a bit more time than that for my daughter. I really want them to have the opportunity to choose.
My newly Midwestern friend has a daughter now and I just wonder if she's reached out to her alumnae chapter in order to preserve something special to pass on to her daughter. I know this woman would be a great addition to her local alumnae chapter - she'd be organizing all of the fun events and making friends with a lot of really nice women.
I don't know if the women in my local alumnae chapter were 'nice' when they were collegiates. Maybe they were bitchy or snobby. I don't know. I do know that they are really nice women now that I am glad to have as friends. I also know that in trying to reclaim some sort of a 'right' for my offspring, I have reclaimed a part of my own past that I am terribly proud of and glad to still have. Yeah, yeah this is a bit sappy. Believe me, I am not about to break into a sorority chant (just yet).
But btw: I love the show ‘Greek’ on ABC Family.