Sunday, October 28, 2012

we're birds of a feather

Wherever you go, just always remember
That you've got a home for now and forever
And if you get low, just call me whenever
This is my oath to you
Wherever you go, just always remember
You're never alone, we're birds of a feather

About a year ago I wrote this post, and after these last few months I wanted to go back to it, and think about how I feel now..

I don't know how many of you have ever been a part of something: a team, a club, an organization, something that you contributed to, and became bigger than yourself, but I can tell you, from first hand experience, that to find yourself surrounded by people that help you feel like you've found your place in a big world is a unique and wonderful experience.

In sorority life, we like to say it's not for four years, it's for life. While for some it may not feel that way, for me it does.

I believe that once upon a time eight years ago, when I met the women who would later become my Sisters, not by blood but by choice, my life was changed for the better. I was there for the good times, and I was most definitely there for some of the bad times as well, but through it all I have memories with those women that have stayed close to my heart. Since graduation many of us have gone our separate ways, but to me that doesn't mean anything. If anything, it just means that it makes any time spent with them that much more meaningful to me.

I've heard mixed feelings from women I have known about their own Sorority experiences...some who didn't make connections and form bonds with others, those who feel that the only reason they ever spent time with each other was because they were forced to, those who feel like they didn't get anything out of the experience..and to those women, I am sorry you feel that way.

I believe that being a part of my sorority gave me the chance to grow, to find out what kind of woman I wanted to be, to introduce me to people who would forever be a part of my life whether just at the moment or now so many years later.

These last few months I've been given the chance to work with my organization as an advisor and through that I got to be a part of the rebirth of my former chapter. I have gotten the chance to play a main role to a new generation of women who now share my letters, who I call my Sisters, and who
I care just as much about now, as I did about my own Sisters when I was an undergraduate. I see myself, and my Sisters reflected in this new generation. I find myself sitting in on their meetings, or looking at their pictures and realizing that I have the same pictures from not too long ago, with the women in them now off all over the world having adventures- falling in love, welcoming new lives, embarking on their dream careers, doing things that a few years ago seemed like things that would happen eventually...but years away. I have "met" women I have never known -- via facebook, who have reached out to me, and now they too have become a part of my life. I know that I can travel the world, and if I needed something, I could reach out to this network of women and find an answer to any question I might have, or problem I may find myself facing.

To me, that is what I was looking for all those years ago, and I didn't even know it. A connection, a lifeline, a bond. In the last eight years I have fallen in love, had my heart broken, changed jobs, and graduated college twice. I have gone through awkward phases, laughed at more things than I could ever remember and taken millions of pictures of possibly every relationship, weird haircut, night out dancing, denim mini skirt trend, heels in the middle of a snow storm, group shots with us all squished together and tons of other things you'd probably rather not have photographic proof of --- everything that probably took place over an eight year time span. I have moved, and moved again. I have celebrated birthdays, engagements and weddings. I have memories of nights spent at karaoke, basement fraternity parties, huge group dinners, nights out dancing without a care in the world and hours spent in small apartments filled with girls getting ready for one thing or another. I have driven hours to spend one night with these people, and have had others do the same. I have had people who were by my side when I was sick, who painted my apartment for me, who got on the phone to tell a guy what an asshole he was, who have helped me through any crisis that came my way-- whether it be a bad hair cut, that pesky issue of not being old enough to get into a bar, a class I just couldn't understand, plans for a friday night, a bad breakup, a crush, a ride in the middle of the night, a place to stay at a moments notice no questions asked, things that were silly and things that were really important--anything you go through in college, and then anything that you encounter when you find yourself suddenly in the real world outside of your safe college bubble and going through your twenties, quickly approaching your thirties. I am happy for all their successes, and feel for any trouble that comes their way.

I know that all of those women who I have gotten to spend years of my life making memories with will forever be a part of my life. They have been there through my ups and downs, and will continue to be there wherever my future takes me. and without being a part of my sorority, I may have never had that. I may have never even met them. and I can't imagine what my life would have been like without them.

 I have fought with these women, and loved them just the same. I wonder to myself, if those women from my past, or these women in my present realize just how important they are to me. We may not speak every day, or even within years, some I will never speak to again. Some have become my best friends and others are just acquaintances. but still, at one point we shared a bond that has always meant something to me. I may not even cross their minds at this point, but nevertheless- the fact that I have known them at all, matters to me.

I guess that's really the point I wanted to get across. You have all mattered to me. Knowing you has made an impact on my life, and I hope that I have made a mark somewhere in yours. and for all those memories -- the old ones, the new ones, and the ones in the making, I am forever thankful to you all.
Sisters always.

with a heart full of hope & a mind full of dreams,

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