I spent four years of my life at a tiny liberal arts women’s college. I think for anyone at any variety of college, it is amazing to look back and examine who you were at 18 years old and the person you emerge to be at 22. It’s a time of so much growth and change.
But this place is especially good at molding and shaping women in those special years. Its small size and the culture of the university allow you to build such solid relationships with professors and peers. You end up involved in at least ten clubs by sophomore year and eventually taking leadership positions in most of them. It is the one and only women’s college in the country with national Panhellenic sororities. It always seems like an oxymoron to some women I meet who ask how we had sororities without fraternities, as if one can’t exist without the other. I can’t help but laugh since many sororities were founded on women’s college campuses to begin with. And we are the only surviving system left at a women’s institution.
I believe in single-sex education, and I learned so much among women that I could not have learned elsewhere. It’s why I returned to another highly-esteemed women’s college for graduate school. I am incredibly grateful for my time at my undergraduate institution and the amazing reunion I got to celebrate this weekend. Ten years! TEN. Not sure how that happened. We had a great university-sponsored dinner on Friday night and then rented a lake house to enjoy more time together. Then the next day was full of all the traditions we are used to celebrating at every annual reunion weekend. Receptions and brunch and mimosas and sundresses and catching up with old friends and professors. It truly is one of my most favorite weekends of the year.
I got to catch up with my favorite English majors, remembering how many last-minute papers we struggled through together and laughing about all the funny quirks of old professors.
And a few sorority pledge sisters stayed in the lake house together and enjoyed a lot of time this weekend. I can’t believe we met 14 years ago. I love seeing where life has taken us since graduation, only better and brighter.
There was so much celebrating and countless laughs and shared moments that can only come from people who know you so well and for so long. I love how old friendships slip back on and feel comfortable immediately. You just pick right back up where you left off.
And as we age, I know the titles and responsibilities just grow bigger and bigger. Motherhood, career, physical distance between old friends. A lot of life has happened in a decade. It feels so liberating, if just for a weekend, to strip all of it away and get down to the person you are underneath.