Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Roomies

Oma Tea Party May 2009

"Hmmm . . . so you're wearing that?"

Totally self-conscious, I fussed in front of the mirror in my dorm, primping for the Freshman Stomp. My new roommate came up behind me and said, "Do you like the way you look?" I burst out laughing. Her sly sense of humor already seemed familiar.

It had taken only a few hours to bond like sisters. Sher and I had been terrified we'd get assigned some dorky, dumpy girls from Timbuktu to share our apartment. Instead, we got chic, adorable coeds, just like ourselves. They had boyfriends at home (cool) but were on the lookout for new ones (cooler.) The four of us instantly united against our other two roommates who were a year older and gushed with superiority complexes, even though they had no boyfriends and were obviously in college to study. Bor-ing.

Lately I've been thinking about people who have influenced my life, and my roommates certainly did. They taught me a lot. We had lengthy discussions about dress-shields, how far was too far, if it was wierd to date a shorter guy, and how to drill boob-holes in the floor so it wouldn't hurt when someone cracked your back.

I remember deeper conversations: the hopelessness of the Viet Nam War; how to tell the difference between lust and love; whether there was one true religion; the assassination of Martin Luther King; accepting that someone you love is gay; wondering if unhappy parents should stay together for their kids. And the age-old questions: Why are we here? Where are we going? What's the point of it all?

It was my first experience as an adult on my own, discovering what I believed, and explaining it to myself. One night two of us kept talking long after the other two fell asleep, opening our souls to each other. I remember laying in the dark, staring at multi-sized holes in the ceiling tiles lit by the moon. Suddenly I realized that I did believe in God, independent of my parents. Sharing those thoughts was a true heart-to-heart experience. It made us sisters.

More than forty years later I occasionally hear a roommates' voice in my memory saying, "This bathroom REEKS!" or "Who's grandma is visiting now?" And when I look in the mirror after primping for a big night I hear, "So, do you like your hair like that?"

Fashion Show Finale 2009

Who helped you grow up?





7 comments:

The Grandmother Here said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Grandmother Here said...

I never did grow up. I'm fascinated by your granddaughters and your dress-up box. You are one GREAT and MEMORABLE Oma!!!!

diane said...

I don't have older sisters but there was a family in our neighborhood that had a nanny.She taught me lots of important things like how to shave my legs...don't forget your thighs or you'll have bangs on your knees and no one likes hairy toes. I still hear her voice in my head when I shave.

Love the fashion show. Tres chic.

Christie said...

Fabulous new profile pic, Oma!

mama jo said...

you, for one...although you never had the joy of rooming with me...only polly...

♥Maren said...

Darling post! You really are an incredible Oma! (I am quietly taking notes)☺

I love that we got to hang out with Yanni & cute Nathan... but I am sad that we didn't get our picture taken together. It was just as cool for me to being hanging out with you as it was to hang out with Ender and Leslie!

BTW - cute, cute picture!

Sheri said...

Oh, the roomies. I had some good ones and some strange ones, but learned from them all.

Love this post. I'm trying to get caught up on my blog reading. Too many good ones, too little time.

BTW--Amen to above comments. You look great!