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Ryan Hall is a family unlike any other

| Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Tuesday nights are practically sacred in Ryan Hall because at 11 p.m., FJ’s commences.

The tradition is simple — every Tuesday, girls in Ryan bake a plethora of treats in Fr. Joe Carey’s second-floor residence, and at 11 p.m., the rest of the world gets to enjoy them. It’s community building and dorm bonding at its finest, and there’s the added bonus of an imminent stomachache from eating way too many cookies.

Because of my preference of studying in the library or my work schedule, I rarely get to enjoy FJs right at 11 p.m. Instead, I usually grab the leftover cookies outside of his door when I do make my way back to my room, but I always feel a bit guilty given that I contributed nothing to the process. Having said that, I realized earlier this Tuesday night that it’s in those little tiny moments that the Ryan Hall community really demonstrates unconditional love. I did absolutely nothing to deserve freshly baked cookies at 2 a.m., but like clockwork, every Tuesday I can count on them being there.

It’s this kind of attitude that makes Ryan what it is for me. The group of women I live with here are collectively nothing short of incredible, and you can always count on them to be there as a support system, day in and day out.

I’ve already written about what a truly wonderful roommate I have, but that’s only the tip of the iceberg of the rest of the community here. I could not have asked for better neighbors — on both sides, and in both of my years here. They’re the girls that, after a long day, I can consistently count on to let me rant to them about whatever is on my mind. They’re the ones that blast music down the hallway on game days — sometimes way too early in the morning — and get us out of bed. They’re the ones that will defend you to the death and have late night conversations about important issues while sharing their food with you.

More importantly, however, these are the people I have had the pleasure of watching grow into truly lovely individuals over the past two years, and each day I am constantly impressed by them and all that they do. They are all cooler people than I will ever be.

I’m way too proud of my dorm, and anyone who knows me knows I live in Ryan Hall — in fact, it’s a recurring joke amongst many of my friends. But that pride comes from a place of genuine love and appreciation for the beyond fantastic group of women here.

I know everyone thinks this of their dorm, but Ryan Hall is more than a dorm. We’re a family, we’re a team, and we’re a community unlike any other.

The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.

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About Rachel O'Grady

Rachel O'Grady is a senior Political Science major living in Ryan Hall. She most recently served as Assistant Managing Editor. Hailing from Chicago (actual Chicago, not the suburbs) she's been a Cubs fan since birth.

Contact Rachel