6 Ways Being a Sorority Girl Prepared Me for Motherhood

04/17/2015 09:34 am ET | Updated Jun 17, 2015
Mary Katherine Backstrom

Oh, sorority girls.

What do you picture? Blonde co-eds with perfect manicures, convertibles and daddy's credit card? Well, you probably don't picture this:


That's me. I'm a sorority girl (minus the whole "perfectly manicured wealthy blonde" thing). Yes, my college days were spent surrounded by junk food, dirty party houses and glitter paint.

But now I am a mother... and pretty much nothing has changed. With a box full of stuffed pandas and selfie-taking skills to be envied, it turns out those sorority days set me up for major success in motherhood.

1. Monogrammed Initials Everywhere

The first lesson in the sorority world is that you can never have too many renderings of your letters. Carved wooden letters, monogrammed sweatshirt letters, canvas painted letters... And now, these letter-making skills are in high demand. Nugget's initials can be seen above his crib, on his blankets, on two Christmas ornaments and several baked clay footprints. Because, like I said, there are never too many.

2. How To Look Decent After a Long Night

Probably the most valuable skill that I've acquired as a sorority girl. No brush? No shower? No problem. I can rock a messy bun and second-day mascara like a celebrity.

3. The Sorority Diet

I survived college on expensive caffeine and cheap food. As a mom, I traded Doritos for Goldfish, but I still go for a good venti non-fat upside-down caramel macchiato with whip. Chugging coffee and bottled water simultaneously to stay awake and hydrated is a sorority trick that has served me well as I deal with infant sleep deprivation.

4. Loud, Happy Chants with Hand Motions

I've never felt more ridiculous than when I snapped and clapped and danced my heart out to the lyrics of boppy sorority ditties. Oh, wait. I do that every day as a mother, performing "The Itsy Bitsy Spider," "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" and "Old McDonald Had a Farm" with jazz hands. Ridiculousness abounds.

5. Ignoring the Frat Party Filth

Wanna hang with the cool kids? You'd better learn to be OK with filthy bathrooms, questionable furniture stains and the heart-stopping idiocy of "Hey, watch this!"

No, that wasn't just college. That's my life with a toddler. Right now.

6. The Sorority Wardrobe

Not much of my wardrobe has changed since I left college. Luckily, it appears that both sorority women and mothers will be wearing running shorts and T-shirts until the end of time. Imagine how convenient it was when I had my baby and took maternity leave. I had a built-in Mommy Wardrobe! I dusted off that Tupperware container and was back in business. Comfy, casual, cute. (And a little snug these days, if I'm being honest.)

Pledging a sorority wasn't unlike becoming a mother. Just like during the magical college days of self-discovery, I learn more about myself as a parent with every mistake and success. And just like my sorority's name, I learned to wear "Mommy" with pride.

OMG... can somebody put THOSE letters on a lavalier??

This post originally appeared on Mom Babble. Follow Mom Babble on Facebook for updates.

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