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I Switched Lives with My Roommate: Here’s What Happened

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Montclair chapter.

Everyone has their own daily routine that they like to stick to. Knowing each other since freshman year and instantly becoming best friends, we have always known that we are totally different people. We see each other in the mornings and at night, but during the day we have contrasting lifestyles. We decided to swap our daily routines and here’s what happened:

Tara (Fashion Studies major): Tara is a shy person who loves fashion, current trends and pop culture. She loves being productive and always plans ahead. She enjoys catching up on  YouTube subscriptions and watching TV. She has recently been binge-watching Gossip Girl for the fourth time. She eats pretty healthy and loves tea. She doesn’t wear makeup every day, but loves makeup tutorials and all things beauty related.

Melanie (Communication and Media Arts major): Melanie is extroverted and a professional fangirl. Most of her life consists of listening to music, buying albums and merch, scrolling through twitter, and staying updated with her favorite bands (BTS is her fav). She’s usually very laid back and LOVES to sleep, eat, be on her phone, and (unfortunately) procrastinate with her work.

9:00 AM

Melanie: I dragged myself out of bed for my class at 10:15. While I usually get to my class in the nick of time, if not late, I was up and getting ready a whole hour before. I forced down some oatmeal and a cup of tea and I had to stop after three bites. I put my colored contacts in, since Tara actually wears contacts everyday. I went bareface and for my outfit I had to put on jeans (a rare occurrence).

My day had just started and I was already struggling. I usually wear whatever I grab out of my closet, but now I was all done up in a nice sweater, rolled up jeans, some sandals, and parted my hair down the middle.

10:00 AM

Melanie: I waited for the shuttle and listened to the playlist Tara made for me of songs she likes. I almost always listen to K-pop so hearing songs in English was definitely a change. A lot of the songs were way slower than what I usually listen to, it featured Ed Sheeran and Kodaline songs.

Tara: I woke up 30 minutes before class started. I usually would get up to make breakfast, but I stayed in bed on my phone. Melanie doesn’t drink tea or coffee, so my day felt cheated of the best part of mornings: caffeine.

11:00 AM

Melanie: I got out of class and walked to Au Bon Pain. Thankfully, Tara usually orders a grilled cheese, so I was finally eating something I liked. BUT, I also had to order an iced chai tea latte. Three words —  I HATE TEA. I was also condemned to sit in the library while I ate and…study (*shudder*).

Tara: I got out of bed and (tried to) apply winged eyeliner. I gave myself a deep side part and changed into a comfy outfit of black leggings, a band t shirt, and vans, with a bomber jacket to top it all off. I knew if I kept trying to fix my liner I would be late for class so I settled for two thick lines across my eyelids (it was quite the look.) I ran to the shuttle as I turned on my designated playlist that Melanie made for me that consists of her favorite songs. I tuned out the sound of the world with BTS.

12:00 PM

Melanie: The grilled cheese was decent and the tea was not too bad surprisingly. I continued to “study” and attempted to do some homework but I got lazy and just had my computer opened while I listened to more music.

Tara: After class, I popped my headphones in and headed to the Student Center to grab lunch. I ordered a chicken caesar salad, which is something I have never had before. As I watched everyone around me eat their pizza and pasta, I cringed as I opened the large bowl of cold, wet lettuce with cheese. I was surprised to learn that salads are not the worst thing on the planet, and that maybe I have been missing out this whole time.

1:00 PM

Melanie: I just went to class listening to more music.

Tara: I ate in a common student lounge while listening to music. Going to a new location was refreshing and I ended up being asked to join a conversation with people I had never met before. Listening to Mel’s playlist all day was very new to me. I had never listened to BTS, or any song in a different language for that matter, but I ended up liking some of the songs.

2:00 PM

Melanie: I left class and instead of going to the lounge that I hang out in all the time, I had to go back to the dorm all alone. I sat in my bed listening to music and “doing work.” But I really couldn’t bring myself to finish anything because I was so tired.

Tara: During my stats class, my friend asked me about my “new look” to which I’m sure she was referring to the horrendous status of my hair and eye makeup. “I’m trying to look like my roommate” I said. The whole day I felt like a different person. Not being in your own personal style takes away a lot of your confidence. Not being able to have my hair, makeup, and outfit the way I like it made me feel like a part of me had been taken away. Also, throughout the day I kept forgetting that I was wearing eyeliner and kept rubbing my eyes, which added to my rough look.

3:00 PM

Melanie: Tara is a fan of Justin Bieber, and I actually had never heard these songs because I was a 1D fan back in the day, but I thought they were very nice. Songs such as “Purpose” and “Life is Worth Living” showed important messages that teenage fans probably needed to hear. It gave me a different view of JB!

Tara: After my last class, I went back to the student lounge to continue listening to music and work. I would usually be headed back to my dorm after my classes are over. I personally focus better when I am alone or in a quiet place, so it was hard for me to get work done while being surrounded by several groups of people.

4:00 PM

Melanie: I ended up just KNOCKING OUT and taking a nap from being so tired from waking up early.

Tara: I continued listening to Mel’s playlist. By this time I started enjoying the new songs I was hearing, which gave me a new found appreciation for K-pop, which I never would have pictured myself actually enjoying.

5:00 PM

Melanie: I woke up and went on the shuttle to get Tara from the lounge and go to eat dinner. Tara eats disgustingly healthy, so I had to eat broccoli (EW) and a sandwich.

Tara: I ate a lovely meal of a cheese burger, mac and cheese and a cupcake for dessert. These are foods I wouldn’t usually eat, but they were very good.

6:00 PM

Melanie: We both walked back in the rain, got to the dorm and we settled down to watch our YouTube playlists, that we prepared for each other, of things we wouldn’t normally watch.

7:00 PM

Melanie: Most of these videos were entertaining to watch. As someone who watches zero youtubers, I found an appreciation for the Dolan Twins. Some videos like “best makeup products” and “get ready with me” weren’t interesting to me, but I didn’t mind too much.

Tara: By hour two of watching these videos, I started to understand just how talented BTS is. I was blown away by the many music and dance videos I watched, and was refreshed to learn how down to earth and funny all of the members are.

8:00 PM

Melanie: I went on my phone after the whole day has passed and I went straight to Twitter to see that I missed so many things. Despite popular belief, a professional fangirl is a full time job!

Tara: After a long day of not looking like myself, I finally showered and then went back to watching Gossip Girl. I was so happy to be feeling like myself again.

Through this experience, we both learned new things about each other and what we like and dislike. From trying new foods and listening to new artists, we were able to understand more about each other’s interests and we got to see how each other’s lives play out when we say goodbye to each other in the morning before we start the day. You should try switching routines with a friend and see what you’ll discover!

Tara Byrne

Montclair '21

Tara is 22 years old and a senior at Montclair State majoring in fashion studies with a minor in business. She loves keeping up with pop culture and catching up on her Youtube subscriptions. Tara mostly writes fashion, beauty, and lifestyle pieces for Her Campus. She is the current President and Co-Editor in Chief of Her Campus Montclair. In addition, she is a Co-Campus Coorespondent for Her Campus Montclair.
Melanie is a 21 year old, senior, Communication & Media Arts major and Her Campus Montclair's Events Director. She loves listening to music, dancing, writing, drawing, doing makeup, and having fun with friends. Melanie is very extroverted and loves to go on adventures. She's constantly on social media and is always updated on her favorite Kpop bands!