Friday, November 11, 2016

How Life Fell Right Into Place

Meghan Brown
Epsilon Omega (Eastern Kentucky U)

If you know anything about me, you know I am one of the biggest homebodies you will ever meet. How did I decide to apply for a job that is the complete opposite of the homebody experience you might ask? Trust me, I ask myself everyday how I jumped into a position that throws you into the unknown and completely out of your comfort zone. But, wow, I am glad that I did!

To start, being an Educational Leadership Consultant for Alpha Omicron Pi was not something I have always wanted to do. While the experience may be once in a lifetime, I simply did not think it was one for me. I was the girl who wanted to “settle down,” get married and live a happy life with a husband and a pup.

Toward the end of my fall semester of my senior year, my grandfather was diagnosed with Stage 4 Lung Cancer. It did not take myself or my family long to rush to his comfort and to the loving arms of my grandmother. I vividly remember when my grandfather told me, “I am not scared to die. I have had a good life, and I have done everything I could have ever wanted.”

His statement threw me into tears and sadness for a few days. However, it was not until I really took time to self-reflect that I realized how significant his remarks were. In the uncertainty of my senior year, I was beginning my job hunt. I wanted to find a job relatively close to home where I could have a stable and comfortable life. However, hearing my grandfather discuss doing everything he wanted in his life offered me an “aha!” moment. Did I really want to jump into what now seemed to me as a life of incredible boredom just because it was convenient and stable? I have never been one to take on “out of your comfort zone” experiences, but I had to ask myself if that ultimately was the way I wanted to live my life. As morbid as it may sound, I pictured the end of my life, and I asked myself “Is this life one I could really be proud of? Did I accomplish everything I wanted?”

After continuous self-reflection, I was reminded of the solid ground I had my past three and a half years of college. It had always been Alpha Omicron Pi. While I had been encouraged to apply for the Educational Leadership Consultant position in the past, I always thought it was out of my comfort zone, but I decided to step out on a limb and pursue it.

I applied and had an interview where I met 19 absolutely incredible AOII women. A few short weeks after interviews, I received a phone call that I was chosen to be a part of the Educational Leadership Consultant team that year.  

While I was absolutely ecstatic to accept the position, I was certainly overwhelmed and anxious. I questioned if I was good enough, capable enough or strong enough to fulfill the dynamic aspects of this position. However, my grandfather remained in the back of my mind. I needed to do something I did not think I could do. I needed to explore this country. Most importantly, I needed to find myself.

Fast forward eight months and you can now find me in College Station, Texas. I am one of the Resident Consultants on the Texas A&M campus where I work with our new Alpha Omicron Pi chapter. This job has changed my life, and I have learned that I am a woman who truly can accomplish and do anything, even if it is miles away from home. I finally feel valued and feel like I am making a difference. The colony members of this Texas A&M community challenge me to be the best version of myself every day. I have another Resident Consultant partner who is incredible, and she reminds me to value myself all the time. I am so grateful.

Alpha Omicron Pi has always been my solid ground. I am so lucky to say that it continues to be my solid ground. I have never been the biggest believer in “everything happens for a reason,” but I do believe that people are placed in your life when you need them the most. My grandfather’s medical struggle has challenged me to be proud of the life that I live. My now co-workers at AOII, the Texas A&M community and all of AOII sisters stepped into my life when I needed them the most. They have encouraged me to live a life out of my comfort zone. To all the other AOIIs who are similar to me and question the uncertainties of life, I hope you can ask yourself the same questions I asked myself. I am so grateful I did.


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