WHAT SOCIAL DISTANCING TAUGHT ME ABOUT CHERISHING FRIENDSHIPS
The following post was written by Samantha Hall, Epsilon Chi–Kansas State University.
Living in the Alpha Gam chapter house was a truly amazing experience that led to so many times—spontaneous, late-night road trips and binge-watching full seasons of our favorite shows to name a few. These small moments were the puzzle pieces that built my live-in experience and pushed me to live in the chapter house for a second year. After not seeing my sisters for months due to the pandemic, I was so excited to see everyone again. Though quarantine certainly had moments of isolation and loneliness, the distance did not put a damper on our sisterhood.
Sisterhood for us is not just about being able to hug one another or having someone to grab dinner with, it’s about the relationships we have with our sisters. Because we were unable to be physically together, we’ve learned the depth of our friendships and the amazing sisterhood, you can have when things turn upside down. The emotional depth of our bonds has evolved and brought with it more intentional relationships. This began over the summer when we started a pen pal program and exchanged letters. Though we were miles apart, I never felt alone as we all still hung out through FaceTime, nonstop Netflix watch parties online and I knew I was only a few days away from a letter from my sisters.
As I thought about moving back into the house with my sisters this fall, I was nervous about the safety precautions and if it would be a safe experience for me. Immediately after moving in, I realized how much care was given to prioritize our safety through the newly implemented protocols and rules. Being back with my sisters, we have felt some changes to our daily lives. With mask requirements implemented throughout the house and hand sanitizer at every turn, I felt confident about moving in and knew I would be safe in my home.
With online/virtual classes and the strange feeling of this academic year, having the Alpha Gam house and my sisters to provide some sense of normalcy has kept me motivated through the hardship of the pandemic. Though things in the house have been different, living with my sisters has been a great experience. We have been able have late night chats, listen and talk to each other and celebrate our best days. Life has been different at the Alpha Gam house, but I’ll take these safety precautions willingly to be able to live with my sisters and stay healthy.