Brother Spotlight: Haley Northrup

Active Brother Spotlight
Name: Haley Margaret Northrup
Class: DIO Spring ’15

Jersey Name: Flamming Yon
Jersey Number: 36
Family: Pure Snake / Pure Snacks
Instruments: Bassoon & Piccolo
Majors: Creative Writing and Writing and Rhetoric
Interests: Band, Writing, Service, Biking

Favorite Music Memory:
My favorite music memory was when I performed the piccolo solo for Reach for the Stars in MKs. I’ve traditionally never have done well with solos so I was terrified. I practiced for weeks to get it exactly right. I was so nervous and sick to my stomach, but then told myself “I got this” and played it flawlessly. I was so rattled after I played it, I didn’t even play the rest of the song after the solo. I remember it so vividly, I remember the people around me, Dr. Cumberledge conducting and giving me a friendly smile, I think he could tell how terrified I was. It’s probably the most rewarding experience I’ve ever had with music. People in the band came up to me to tell me how good it was and I’ve never experienced that before. Usually I mess things up when I have a solo, so it was really great to put a lot of work into something and really have it play out positively.

Why KKΨ:
I chose KKPsi because the leadership I saw on the field when I was in MKs really brought me back to high school. I was in leadership in high school as a section leader and crew leader, and after my first semester of not really doing anything other than just being in the band it left me wanting more. I wanted to be the person who put up the speakers, I wanted to be the person who loaded the truck. I didn’t think I’d ever miss that from high school, but I felt like I just wasn’t doing enough being the average member. So I rushed KKPsi the spring semester of my freshman year, not really knowing too much about it but only that they did service for marching band and at the time band was life to me, so I wanted to help in any way I could. Luckily, they liked me, extended me a bid, and my sophomore year I got to be the person that put up the speakers and loaded the truck.

Favorite KKΨ Memory:
I have a few, one is from Fall 15 at our retreat. There were so many inside jokes created from it and I really enjoy camping and tubing down streams. Some things of Fall 15 retreat will have to remain ambiguous because we all need some shroud of mystery surrounding our lives, but it’s a great story and if you want to find out just ask. My first time I ever sang the hymn was another memory I particularly enjoy. I love our hymn and it was so special to me when I finally got to sing it as a brother. My last memory is a more recent one which happened at our last Formal Rush for Spring 2017. Mark Lewis brought his guitar and started playing and soon thereafter everyone was laughing, clapping, and singing, and it had to be the first time in awhile that I really experienced true brotherly love for everyone in that room. I felt so connected with my brothers. We all shared our love of music together in that room that day and it was a very powerful moment for me. For the first time in awhile in the brotherhood, I felt like I was exactly in the place that I was supposed to be.

What is the most important thing you gained from your membership process?
During my process, I went through a lot of struggles. I suffered tremendously from mental illness that eventually culminated in me being hospitalized in a facility off campus. What got me there was that I was too busy trying to please everyone else and go above and beyond that I didn’t take the time that I needed to really take care of myself. My line brothers were wonderful and after that incident it served to bond us closer than we’ve ever been before. From my process, I learned that you don’t have to do everything by yourself, and that if you’re having problems with any factor of life, your brothers are there for you. I also learned that it’s alright to take a step back if you need to breathe. We get into this mindset that Kappa Kappa Psi is on the top of everything else, above school, above mental health. It’s really not. Sometimes it’s hard, because you’re not considered a “good brother” if you don’t always go above and beyond. That was something I struggled with tremendously because all I wanted was to be a “good brother”. Listen, if you need some time, if you need to take a step back, do it. Don’t listen to what “good brother’s” are saying, ultimately you need to do what is best for you.

If you could be a bike what type of bike would you be?
If I was a bike I’d be a road bike. I love road bikes, I love riding on the road. I think being a road-bike would be a good metaphor for my life. I never know what’s going to get thrown at me next. A car could swerve into the bike lane, I could fall, I could injure myself, these are all things that have happened to me. But the most important thing I’ve learned from road-biking is that you never know what will happen next, it’s dangerous, it’s physically taxing, but in the end you get a greater perspective on life and you become stronger. I’ve learned not to take things personally when people flip me off or yell at me from their cars, because it’s very easy to put others down, and most of all they don’t know me. They don’t know what I’ve been through. You need to learn to shrug things off and just do you. Focus on yourself and your own personal growth. There will always be people there trying to drag you down with them and you can either fall down or you can fly above them. I like to think that today I fly much more often than I fall.