Jan 2014
Amanda Brandt

What living in a sorority house taught me, pt. 1

Amanda shares what she has learned from living in the Delta Zeta house. Part 1 of 2.

HCB contributer Annemarie Weiner  recently wrote an article that went viral. Well, viral by my standards. (Anything over 40 Facebook shares is impressive, which is saying something considering I was embroiled in the Macklegate scandal of 2013.) Annemarie wrote an excellent and well-rounded post about Greek life. My favorite part: “However, by the last day I realized that this just isn’t for me. So I dropped out, cried a little, ate a cupcake, and moved on. I say that to say this: Greek life isn’t for everyone, and that’s OK.”

So true. It isn’t for everyone. And eating a cupcake generally makes me feel better.

However, lest you think that HCB is an anti-Greek group, realize that 40 percent of us are in a sorority or fraternity. (Well, just sorority. Josie and I are in sororities. Whatever, you get the point.)

I am a proud member of my sorority, and this year I tested my love for the organization by going where I had never gone before: I moved into the Delta Zeta house.

Ah, the Delta Zeta house. That mythical and magical place that my female friends are afraid to visit and my guy friends refuse to enter. Yes, I call this formidable castle home. Except it isn’t a castle. Or formidable. It’s just a cool old house where a lot of women live.

The purpose of this post is not to provide a different viewpoint to Annemarie’s article. (I believe that Josie has something in the works.) Rather, I want to share with you the things I have learned from living in a sorority house, a concept that is very foreign to my Creighton peers and extremely unlike the experiences of my friends who have lived in state school houses.  

So far, I have learned…

  • How to share, and I mean share. I have never been much of a “share-er.” I like to keep my life my life, without giving my feelings away or (gasp!) sharing clothes. Just ask my kid sister. But in the seven months I have spent in the house, I have realized that sharing is nice. Wonderful, even!  People take good care of your things as long as you afford theirs the same respect. But sharing doesn’t stop with mere objects like blouses, strapless bras or printer paper. Turns out, sharing feelings and emotions with others makes you feel better!
  • A family atmosphere is important. I have had great and fantastic friends at Creighton. I have had great roommates who cared about me and groups to make me feel like a part of a community. But I have been missing a welcoming, family-like atmosphere. What do I mean? At the house, there is always someone at home, to greet you and ask about your day. People are always making cookies or soup and want you to taste the batter, just to check. If you are sick, someone will take your temperature and bring you medicine. And you never have to get frightened when watching “Pretty Little Liars,” because someone will plop down on the couch with you. Freaking out about an upcoming medical procedure, difficult graduate school test or car accident? Someone has been through it, and they give you advice and soothe your fears.  Let’s just say that if you are crying, a tissue is offered up before your tears have time to hit the ground. It’s nice. I was afraid to move into the house at first. I thought I would be on pink and green overload, that too much turtle time would make me feel trapped. But I can’t get sick of or fed up with my housemates when I genuinely, truly enjoy them. And I do! I like them!
  • Less is more. I will never forget my first Creighton campus visit. The sun was shining, the buildings were gleaming and the air seemed full of the promise and potential of my future.  Then we walked into Kiewit Residence Hall. The distinct odor of the common couches and the strange elevator lighting snapped me back to reality. Then I walked into a room and looked in horror. Peeling vinyl squares on the floor. White cinderblock walls. A permanent screen on the window exterior, reminiscent of a jail cell. Teeny-tiny closets. I remember looking around and thinking that nothing was going to fit in this room. Flash forward three years, and I moved into a sorority house where I had to share a teeny-tiny closet with three other people. Less is more, and I am living with less, less, less. I go back to my permanent residence and look at all of my crap in horror. I must downsize, always, continually!

But the fun doesn’t stop here! Part two will be posted on Sunday. Be sure to check it out. While you are waiting, read about how Matt got into an altercation with an iPad.