Growing up, I had never really thought of a myself as a girl would join a sorority. I had no family ties to Greek life, and I had no real experience with any organization close to it at all. I was definitely someone who looked down on those girls and saw Greek life as negative organizations that did not fit the kind of person I wanted to become. Many of my friends were surprised to see me to through recruitment and shocked to see me join a sorority. Like myself they saw Greek life as negative: vapid, shallow, vain, frivolous, hierarchical, and just plain ridiculous. I began to realize at some point that many of the things that I associated with Greek life, I also associated with being a girl. More specifically: a “girly-girl.” Taking pictures together and caring about your appearance. Dressing up. Shopping. Normal things that everyone does, but girls are put down for doing them. I love doing all of these things, and I used to feel ashamed of it. I had it in my mind that these things were shallow, and they were something that I should not take pride in liking. And thankfully, this would change one day.
This summer at Camp Crimson, I was asked a question while playing Hot Seat with my campers that I wish I could have answered more aptly. Tomboy or girly-girl? I hesitated at first. Thinking about all the things that I loved that fell into the “tomboy category.” I love being outdoors. I love hiking. I love camping. I love no make-up days. I love being competitive af. I love being the stubborn person I am. But I thought about how much I loved being a “girl” too. I love dresses and heels. I love having long hair. I love taking pictures. Neither of these things are bad. We shouldn’t have to choose either way. If I was more sporty, that doesn’t mean anything. I’m still a girl. It shouldn’t matter if I am a girl that wants to model for a living or cut people open as a surgeon or play a professional sport. All these things are beautiful and any girl can do any of these things. This dichotomy shouldn’t exist. We shouldn’t limit people to what they can and cannot do.
As my view on being female changed, so did my views on Greek life. Sorority life has opened my eyes to what girls can do. The other women in Delta Gamma Alpha Iota have inspired me and empowered me so much. My friends have pushed me out of my comfort zone onto the intramurals fields (I am a dancer not a softball player but I stood out there with a metal bat and made a run). I watched older girls thrive and make a mark on campus and inspire me to do the same. They poured their hearts into their passions, and they poured their hearts into me to do the same. In my times of need and worry, my sisters have done so much for me. I remember the sweet texts from Kalsey as I became Film Series Chair. I remember girls cheering me on as I made a fool of myself playing sports. I will absolutely never forget the crowd of my sisters crawling over to me during Camp Crimson wrap up to tell me how much I deserved to be an Outstanding SGL as I was sobbing, especially when I know that I could never have done it without them supporting me every step of the way. And along the way, they never made fun of me for wanting to take pictures with them. Or go shopping together. Delta Gamma has made me proud to be a woman in every single sense of the word.
Woman can be beautiful and put loads of care into appearances, but that doesn’t mean that we aren’t strong. It takes strength to strut in heels. There is no weakness in feeling beautiful. There is no weakness in enjoying shopping. There is no weakness in liking “masculine” things. There’s no weakness in being a female engineer. There is no weakness in being a female ballerina. There is no weakness in putting on makeup and there is no weakness in not wearing any. There is no weakness in treating yo self and no weakness in trying to eat healthy.
THERE IS NO WEAKNESS IN BEING A WOMAN.
I strive to be someone that lifts up other people no matter what. I strive to help people achieve their greatest potential. I never want to tear someone down. I want to encourage them and fill them with all that I have. Delta Gamma has done so much for me, and I cannot wait to see what else I will gain as a sorority woman, and how I can give back to the women in my life that have done so much for me.