Avery Bryan

It was a Sunday and I was more nervous and more excited than I had ever been. I was a freshman in college on my way to open my bid card after what seemed like the longest four days of my life. There was only one sorority that I wanted, and if I’m being honest I was pretty sure I was going to get it. The Gamma Chi’s sang their song and counted down, “five.. four.. three.. two.. one.. OPEN!” I ripped open my envelope and stared at my bid card while everyone else ran to their respective corners. I was trying to understand why it wasn’t written in green ink and why I couldn’t find the words “Kappa Delta” on it anywhere.

Freshman year went on and I came to the conclusion that the “srat life” just wasn’t for me. I thought I would find my place somewhere else, but that proved to be a lot harder than I thought it would. I spent a lot of time with Grey’s Anatomy (#merderforever) and ended up switching my major every quarter. Oops. Sorry Mom and Dad.

I’ve always been the kind of a person who prided myself on having it all together so freshman year was hard for me. The only thing that could have made it worse in my eyes was if people knew I wasn’t doing well. I did everything I could to make it look like I was okay, but the truth was I was very unhappy and even filled out applications to transfer to other schools.

I’ve always been a big believer in gut decisions. That’s the reason I came to Tech in the first place, and although it was starting to look like my instincts were finally failing me, I ended up deciding not to transfer because something about it just didn’t feel right. I spent the summer at Camp Ozark in Arkansas, not because I wanted to serve but because I wanted to get the heck out of Ruston. Luckily for me, God’s ability to do wonderful things isn’t dependent on the purity of my intentions. That summer at camp was full of so much growth and so much healing, and I left knowing that I had to die to my pride if I wanted to live a life that glorified my creator.

My entire freshman year I had friends encouraging me to go through recruitment again. At the time I couldn’t imagine anything I wanted to do less, but after leaving camp I knew it was something I needed to do. I didn’t want to spend another year in college feeling like I hadn’t grown since I left high school. So, I swallowed my pride and went through again. It was hard and seeing people my own age on the other side of recruitment was not fun, but at the end of those four days I opened a bid card written in green ink and ran home to people I had no idea would end up changing my life forever.

Thanks to my inability freshman year to make up my mind about what I wanted to do with my life – again, sorry mom and dad – I ended up having to stay a fifth year at Tech, which meant I got a full four years in Kappa Delta. I’ve spent the past four years surrounded by women who genuinely care about me and make me better. Women who have laughed with me, cried with me, prayed with me, and reminded me constantly that I am capable. I’ve also been fortunate enough to hold leadership positions thanks to older members and advisors who have poured so much into me and modeled what it truly looks like to lead others well.

If you would have told me as an insecure sophomore going through recruitment for her second time that I would one day be in charge of it, I would have laughed in your face. But life is funny that way and God continues to prove that His plans are ten times better than mine will ever be.

Lenora Ashmore Blackiston once said that “out of such pure and simple beginnings grow great and wonderful things”. If you’re just starting out college and things don’t seem to be going your way I can pretty much guarantee that you aren’t the only one. Keep going because I promise it gets better. Great things are coming your way, and once they’re there it sure is wonderful.


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