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Helenes Love, Wrapped in a Bouquet Just for You

There is no other feeling like that of being a Helene.

I often sit very still, pondering what this organisation means to me and how lucky I am to be surrounded by such wonderful people—each of whom I feel connected to on some quantum cosmic level. Sometimes I lie down and reminisce on the subject for hours. There is no such thing as too much time spent loving Helenes. I let the memories come flooding back.

I think back to the excitement I felt as a prospective and Spring ’20 Rosebud about all the events and genuine friendships to come. I am still excited for what Helenes will bring in the future and for all the fun left to be had.

Another sensation that comes to mind is unity. My last in-person spirit event was the 2020 USC-UCLA men's basketball game at the Galen Center. We all had our arms around each other, screaming our voices hoarse as the Trojans won in the last second of the game. We left our entire selves on those student section seats, but we did it together and I wouldn’t have had it any other way.

When COVID-19 cut our Rosebud semester short, a horrendous despair came over me, and I burst into tears during Rosebud meeting. I am eternally grateful for the way my class listened and cradled me with support. I wouldn’t have wanted to weep with anyone else.

As the summer burned on, my calls with Helenes kept me going. Feeling such fondness for people so far away over a lengthy and arduous time is certainly a testament to the strength of Helenes’ bonds with each other.

The joy that came from finally being able to see some Helenes safely made me smile the most I have in a long, long time. I am beyond fortunate to be in a pod with a few of the people I dearly missed, and nothing makes my day more than seeing or bumping into a Helene.

Finally, I remember the hope I felt as a prospective, knowing that there was a space on campus in which I would be able to be my authentic self. That same sentiment remains with me in many forms. I hope that all of my Helenes friends find success and happiness in every aspect of life. I hope that the pandemic will end, and that we will be able to fully cherish each other how we were always meant to. And I hope that future generations of Helenes will be able to hug each other with love one day.

It’s no secret that all of these feelings are summarised by love. There is no proper way of describing how powerful it is, but it feels like the warm sun placing its hand gently on your back, or being barefoot outside with soft grass under your feet and the sweet wind clearing your senses. It feels comforting, grounding, and inspiring.

When I am fragmented, worn down by the demands of living in a pandemic, Helenes love makes me feel whole again. All of these feelings bubble up at each event and interaction, like a reel in the back of my mind reminding me that I belong.

However, what I think about most is that these feelings can be found tucked away in the corners of the everyday moments I get to spend with Helenes. The most seemingly insignificant experiences may be the most subtle, but in my heart, they are the most meaningful.

We laugh together.

We cry together.

We inelegantly inhale In-N-Out together.

We drive together at night and get visions of our friendships in years to come, journeying to the future and back in little Helenes spaceships.

When I stare out my window at night and share my thoughts with the stars, I always come to the conclusion that there is no singular feeling of being a Helene. Rather, we feel an affectionate collage of moments, emotions, and memories that will last a lifetime, weaved together imperfectly, yet lovingly, to form the petals of one delicate, beautiful rose.

Long may it continue to blossom.

Helenes Love and All Mine,

Harriet Taylor


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