Saturday, June 25, 2016

The Tridelts Are Coming

If you know me, you know that I was in a sorority in college. Going into my first year, I felt like recruitment was required. That it was the only way to make friends. That it would determine my success first in college and then post-grad life. I bought into the TV + movie depictions of Greek life and what information I garnered from social media photos.

Over four years, I wrestled with my Greek life expectations and the reality of it all. Sometimes I felt disconnected and unknown by these "sisters," but oftentimes I felt encouraged and lifted up. I remember coming home from thesis research, crying and feeling exposed, and being comforted by a fellow housemate. In four years time, I went from being uninvolved and distant to our chapter's photographer/historian to living in the house during my senior year of college. In four years time, I gained really valuable friendships and a true community of genuine + strong + compassionate women.

When I moved out here to San Francisco, these same women affirmed me during my initial season of isolation... they told me that San Francisco was good for me, that I was realizing my full self, that I fit in San Francisco, that it all made sense. You're killing it, they said. And their words somewhat defined my measure of success. Why? Because they knew me. Knew three years of my life story. That affirmation meant more than they realized.

When the Tri Delts decided to come visit, a whole pack of them, I was joyous but also overwhelmed. San Francisco apartments aren't very big, you see. And this is a excitable + colorful bunch of friends. (Who also love to plan every detail.) I joked that the "Tridelts are coming, the Tridelts are coming!" And then, they showed up. They came and it was like a mini college reunion – full of adventure and glasses of wine and waterfall hikes and tough questions and banana phones and lots of laughs.

My sorority experience wasn't textbook, but it wasn't fake. I learned so much from these women and through them, I was able to pursue art and photography, through them I learned to go from Riesling wine to Cab Sauv, and through them I was able to start over again in San Francisco.

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