Like most experiences in life, sorority recruitment is filled with both euphoric, glittery highs, and dark, meltdown-inducing lows.
High: All your sisters who have been spread across the country for three months are all finally in one place again. The greeting squeals are frequent and so high-pitched that nearby dogs begin to howl. Everyone looks so tan or thin and some even talk about how they had such a great time abroad. Everyone is so excited, but the glow quickly fades.
Low: For the first time in three months, you have to sit still and listen to someone else talk for the majority of the day. You’re being told what to do, and you don’t always like it. You don’t even listen to your own mother the way you do your recruitment chair, and everyone is getting pretty tired of hearing, “THESE ARE YOUR FUTURE LITTLES. THE OLDER GIRLS DID THIS FOR YOU, NOW IT’S YOUR TURN. PLEASE BE QUIET AND WATCH THE SLIDESHOW.”
High: The pep talk before the first round deserves to be in a book with other great prepare-for-battle speeches. Your chapter feels prepared, rehearsed, and looks amazing. You’re ready. Bring it.
Low: You’re about to spend your whole day flirting with girls.
High: That incredible conversation with a PNM, which sets off your “SHE’S ONE OF US” alarm. Your rush crush is probably the most exciting crush you’ve had in a while, and it feels oh so good.
Low: Finding out the cute girl you thought you had a great conversation with dropped.
High: Finding out the awkward girl you talked to dropped and you won’t get stuck discussing how much she likes sharks while resisting the urge to pin her down and forcibly remove the lipstick form her teeth ever again.
High: Seeing PNMs cry at your sisterhood video or story. Hopefully it’s because they’re moved and want to be a part of your sisterhood and not because they’re emotionally drained and homesick.
Low: Realizing you’re less than halfway through the rounds of that day and there are already blisters on your toes from your new wedges.
High: Looking around at the amazing women in the room during the sisterhood video or story and crying, too. These tears are 74 percent genuine emotion and 26 percent exhaustion.
Low: Finding out the chapter got fined because someone told a PNM, “See you later!” Your recruitment chair’s voice only partially masks her rage as she whisper-shouts, “YOU CAN’T SAY THAT BECAUSE IT IMPLIES YOU WILL ACTUALLY SEE HER LATER WHICH IS BASCIALLY PROMSING A BID.”
High: Finding out you aren’t rushing a round and can go nap on the floor of the holding room.
Low: Being less-than-gently awoken by a frenzied, younger member with panic in her eyes as she informs you that you’re needed for the round that just started.
High: When a PNM tells you she only wants to be in your chapter, and you can tell she means it.
Low: You’re running on Red Bull and four hours of sleep. You will probably cry at some point for absolutely no reason.
High: Preference round. The ritual, the feeling of knowing a girl is going to pick your house because of the fantastic pref round conversation you had, the knowledge that tomorrow is the end–it’s a beautiful thing.
High: It’s over! Y ou have a beautiful new pledge class that makes the blisters, the lack of sleep, and the recruitment chants still ringing in your head all feel worth it. You feel so close to all of your sisters, your family is about to get a new little, and the Bid Day theme is on point. You’re all somehow managing to still scream and sing despite the constant chanting of the past week. Sure, when you raise your hand and say “here” on your first day of classes, it will be with the hoarse rasp of someone who sounds like she’s chain smoked since infancy, but that’s okay. You made it to the other side of another year of the most intense week of sorority life (mostly) unscathed.
Low: It’s over. You stumble, blinking, covered in glitter, humming your welcome chant, into the bright daylight of reality. Stepping out of sorority-land and back into the real world is a difficult adjustment that can only be soothed by the final high of the roller coaster of emotions that is sorority recruitment: the end of a dry period.