People always used to tell me, “Melissa, enjoy this time in your life, because you will blink and …” Yeah, I’m sure you heard it before too. I never used to believe them, until a few weeks ago. I found myself standing in the front of the classroom in Peterson (for those of you who went to UCSD, they even have the same darn annoyingly small desks in there) talking to the women of Zeta Mu about resumes, interviews, and what to expect beyond college. Was I in the twilight zone? I feel like I was just sitting there myself as an embarrassingly naïve 18-year-old new member, about to embark on the journey of a lifetime. It can’t be 15 years since that time, right?? (My wrinkles on my face are confirming that it has in fact been 15 years since I joined the sisterhood of the lifetime. Note, the wrinkles were caused by outside factors, not the sisterhood!).
I stare out into the smiling crowd of beautiful Zeta Mu women and feel like I am a world away from their collegiate life, yet it seems like yesterday. I used to stand at the front of this exact same room yelling for my sisters’ attention or spouting out some Eleanor Roosevelt quote (shameless Eleanor plug: “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent”) but I in fact have lived quite a full life since then. I can’t even begin to count the times when I wished I was out of college, and living an adult life, in a “real” job. Now I find myself wishing myself back into college!
However, I look back on that time in my life and can truly say that I did enjoy it to the fullest. Were there times of chaos and times of sadness? Sure. But even through those, I had my sisterhood. My true band of sisters who got me through some of the toughest obstacles I’ve ever faced, both in and out of college. I would have never guessed on that grey, misty La Jolla day in September of 1998 that I had joined an organization that would give me so much: leadership, love, support, and friendship, but it did.
I encourage you (whatever age you might be) to stop and take a minute to enjoy your surroundings. Stop and smell the roses, if you will, because those people long ago were right, time truly does fly. I keep trying not to blink!!
Pictured above: Melissa as a baby, at National Headquarters with Stacy in front of the fireplace and pictures of the founders, and her senior portrait.
Sigma Kappa La Jolla Alumnae Blog