For the past few years, my sorority sisters and I have tossed around the idea of helping out during Rush.  (Forgive me if my vernacular sounds dated.  We used to call it Rush.  Perhaps now it’s referred to as Recruitment.). With our schedules being so hectic, we never got ourselves there, but this year since I find myself re-connecting with Greek Life, I really wanted to be part of it.  Jen said she’d go with me so we agreed to meet at the house at 6:30. I’ve driven by a million times but hadn’t stepped inside since graduation.  As I was driving the familiar route up Washtenaw Avenue, I found myself feeling emotional.  When I decided to re-commit to my creative life, I knew that I wanted to act more like my former self.  I understood that to mean enjoying myself and laughing more.  I also affirmed to find more time for the things I love, but I forgot that it also meant that I could become weepy and blubbery at a moment’s notice.  With no warning at all.  As I approached the house I had tears in my eyes.  I was a nostalgic mess and I was nervous that Jen or anyone else might see me.  I brought the panels that I made as a gift for the girls, plus a stack of postcards to introduce my business and offer them a discount.  Hey, we sorority girls have to stick together. When we entered through the door, the whole first floor was abuzz with preparation for Third Sets. I stashed my goodies to the side, seeing that it should wait until later.   All of the Alpha Gams were dressed in similar navy blue dresses with beige shoes and everyone looked great!  The house looked amazing too.  The structure was the same of course, although it had been opened in a few places to create a user-friendly flow, but the furnishings were tasteful and very current.  My last memories of the house were pepto bismol pink as we called it.  Now it is a neutral fresh gray with red accents, wood floors and French doors.  Simply lovely!  The former president greeted us as we walked in and offered to take us around.  It was familiar of course, but my mind was a frenzy as I was flooded with memories.  I saw the buzzer system where we all had our own personal buzz to page us if someone came to the door.  This was before cell phones and texting, of course.  We stopped by the TV room where the biggest couch in the world still exists and appears to have been recovered.  I don’t know how but it seems to be the same couch that we all watched movies on together.  I remember a lot of sobbing during a screening of “Beaches”.  We walked up the stairs.  We had serenades on those stairs… a lot of them.  Then we were taken to the spot where we were asked to time the presenters in the room.  I happened to be stationed right next to a composite from one of my years in the house.  Oh, the hair!  Of course were were on trend but it must look so funny to these girls today.  Heck it looks funny to me now.  I snapped pictures of my close friends and started sending them out.  Once the party officially started, the Alpha Gams escorted the rushees to the room for a brief presentation on social life in the house.  We chatted quietly in the hallway and I showed them my picture on the composite.  Then they had lots of questions about pictures they had walked past a million times.  “Oh, Kitsy was your house mother? We LOVE Kitsy!”  They had noticed the House Father on one of the composites from the 70’s.  Of course we had noticed and laughed about him while we were there but thankfully it was before my time. He looked like the oldest brother on “Eight is Enough”. Then they asked me if I still stayed in touch with any of my Alpha Gam sisters.  “Yes.  One of my girls is right down the hall and I’m Facebooking their pictures to my other friends.  We still get together a couple times a year.”  

During breaks we talked to some other girls and asked questions like, “Do you still have a cook? How’s your House Mother? Do you still have Senior Bells?”  They hadn’t heard of that one.  We explained that we did Senior Bells when the last Senior turned 21.  It was a challenge that required a coach.  I informed that that Jen was my coach.  She told them that I was in her wedding.  “That’s what I say to everyone” one of the girls beamed. “These girls are going to be my bridesmaids one day!”

The parties wrapped up and I couldn’t remember ever staying up that late while being so perky.  Then, they had to meet when all was said and done!  The former president met us as were were heading out and I gave her the panels and postcards I had brought for them.  I explained the business that I’m undertaking and one of the girls said, “Sounds like an amazing Sisterhood Activity!”  I offered to bring the paint.  As we were leaving one of the girls said, “Oh and by the way, I’m seeing to it that we bring Senior Bells back!”  I smiled.  “My email’s on the postcard.  You let me know if someone needs a coach!”

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