I will be the first to admit that I did not truly appreciate being a sorority member my freshman year. It was fun and all, but toward the end of my freshman year – when I would leave Mercer – I was disillusioned. It is the same as any family unit; there will be times when you are done with one another. I came back to Mercer as a senior and would still be there in my fifth year. This was when I started to truly understand my sisterhood and to appreciate these ladies with whom I shared a ritual and core values.
But it was years later as a 29-year-old woman with two kids and in the midst of a divorce that I would really “get it.” These ladies, whom I would get to know as a member of the Greater Macon Alpha Delta Pi Alumnae Chapter, were there for me in ways that no one else was. However, the Greek experience is not just limited to those within one’s own organization. When Nick Whitlock, a brother of Sigma Alpha Epsilon from Mercer, was killed overseas, I saw our Greek community come together as a whole like I never have before. I did not know him well, but he was my age; his wife is a Phi Mu from Mercer, just a few years younger than me.
While in college, I’ve seen those who are not Greek make fun of those who are – but unless you have experienced this brother- and sisterhood, it is something you cannot understand. Yes, it is a membership organization that we pay to be a part of, but that does not make us unlike any other dues collecting organization. What makes us different is that each of us has a secret ritual that we hold dear, each of us considers our organization to make us brothers and sisters – but it is the same for the Greek community as whole. Yes, after you graduate you will have moments when you are able to network and make connections because of your Greek affiliation, but it also teaches you that there is a world bigger than your own, and no matter where you may go in this world, you will find others who understand and have something in common with you.