The Five Stages of Grief Applied to Packing Up for the Summer

You blink once and it’s May. Wasn’t it just yesterday when you and your roommates were moving in? How can this year already be over?

With the end of the school year comes a number of harsh realties. You have to cram for finals and pray your GPA ends up where you want it. You have to say goodbye to friends who you won’t see over the summer. But worst of all, you have to pack up your apartment and move out.

Your apartment has been your home for the past nine months. It holds everything you own – every part of your life at school – and you’re expected to just box it all up in a few days? The stress of that alone is more than all of finals week.

Here are the five stages of grief everyone goes through while packing up their apartments (and lives) for the summer.


I don’t need to start packing right this second. There’s plenty of time – at least enough time for some Netflix. An hour, tops. I don’t need to pack. Maybe if I close my eyes, my stuff will pack itself. Yeah, try that. I’ll just close my eyes tight and maybe when I open them, all my clothes will have magically folded themselves neatly into my duffle bags. Okay, go.

*closes eyes*

*nothing happens*

Well, it was worth a try.


WHY? Why do I have to pack ALL this stuff by myself? Where is my boyfriend, isn’t it his job to be helping me with this crap?! Oh yeah, wait, I don’t have a boyfriend. Okay, well if I did, he would so be in trouble for not helping. Ugh. I hate this. My Keurig is so heavy, there’s no way I can pack that alone. And not to mention the television. Of course I have to take it home with me. Why couldn’t my roommate take it? So what if it’s technically mine?

This is ridiculous; I can’t find anything! Where are all my cosmetics? They couldn’t have just vanished. I can’t pack anything else until I find my face powder. God, I really hate this.


Okay, relax. Take a breath. If I finish packing, let’s say, half of my closet and most of the bathroom today, I will treat myself to a nice coffee. And pastry. And possibly a new pair of shoes. Whoa, okay, NO. No shoes. That’s just more to pack. Dang it, this is hard.


Oh god, this is it. This is where it all ends for me, drowning in a pile of my own stuff in the middle of my bedroom floor. I can’t even see the light anymore. This is too much work; I’ll never make it out alive. I don’t deserve to go here. I don’t deserve this apartment. I don’t even deserve any of this stuff that I need to pack. I’m just going to throw everything out. That’s it, final decision.


Okay, no, that was dramatic. I’m not throwing anything out. I can do this. I am an intelligent, youthful college student. If I can tackle intense classes five days a week, I can certainly tackle putting my belongings into boxes. Everyone gets through this, and so can I. Let’s do this.


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