Far too often there is a distinction of the fabrication of a sorority girl, but what exactly does a typical sorority girl look like? Do we carry around a Starbucks drink in our hand at all times dressed in Hunter Boots and Lulu Lemon leggings? Do we all have bleach blonde hair with legs that are eternal and tan from the countless hours in a tanning booth? Do we all have the lean and fit body type shown in magazines that are impossible to attain? Do we all say “like” a thousand times in our every day language? Let’s not forget the notion that every sorority girl is involved in a typical recruitment video that carries endless pep and cult-like chants; but are we actually all like that?
Being a sorority girl is no doubt a stereotype that almost every college student not involved in Greek life rolls their eyes as we walk into the library wearing letters proudly, but what would they say about me if they knew about what I did in my free time?
Through childhood I was brought up with sports. My growth spurt hit a little too early so I was a bit bigger and taller which made me more proactive to play certain positions, as I’m sure most athletes can relate to. There is a definitive sizing in which you must reach in order to excel in that position and ultimately in the sport. However, I never grew much after middle school and my body evened out, which had various effects on my body confidence and mental wellbeing especially after countlessly being told time and time again that I just was not good enough because I was not tall enough or athletic looking enough. By my junior year of high school I hated every aspect of my body and what I looked like. I felt that I could never look like the girls of perfection in the magazines and advertisements that young girls see daily. The mirror was my worst enemy in which I critiqued myself every day. However, this was when a blessing was given to me.
A few of my male friends in high school played rugby, a smaller sport popular in Europe. As an average American, rugby was an alien game to me, yet it caught my whole interest. When I was informed that there was not a girl’s team, I decided to create one with a few of my friends. From the help of the men that competed in rugby with whom I was friends with, I was off and running in venturing into a new sport. As I developed knowledge and skill in this new game, I took the comforts in which the sport gave me. In rugby there is a position for EVERY BODY TYPE. Whether you are fast, skinny, short, heavier, tall, etc., you have the opportunity to excel. I gave my entire heart to the sport that saved me from the enormous rut I had fallen into from detesting every aspect of my physical appearance.
If you’ve ever watched rugby, you are aware of the intensity and aggression of the game, but I love it. I love the constant bruising, the feeling of exerting your full force into a tackle, and the love of your teammates at your side at all times. Rugby encourages the diversity of healthy body types and it is a game where being athletic and strong helps you immensely. It is an entirely different outlook on what modern society says is wanted of women. I began playing collegiate level at Oakland University in which I owe so much of my improvement to the game to, and am now playing division 1 club for Detroit Rugby Football Club. Although I am still working on my body positivity mind set, I am thankful for this game and the strong and powerful women in which have become some of my role models. From them I have become and am in the process of becoming stronger and fit and truly loving my body.
Similarly to the girls I encounter in rugby, being in a sorority has built my confidence in my abilities and myself. There is never a time where my sisters are not rooting for me and this is so important for mentality. Knowing that there are people who will pick you up when you fall, or in rugby terms, will ruck you when you get hit, is possibly one of the greatest feelings anyone at any age can have.
While also playing the sport I love that may leave constant bruises on my legs, I am an English major with a GPA of 3.6 as a sophomore taking two graduate level English classes, while also working a part-time job, and yes, I am a sorority girl. I am a Delta Zeta sorority girl.
So would you have guessed all of that if I had introduced myself to you as a sorority girl?
We are not all stereotypical. We are an intelligent, hard-working, ambitious group of young women that just want to feel accepted and bound to one another in a world where women are discriminated against every day.