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The Ten Stages of An Overpacker Getting Ready For Break

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

As we all know, spring break is right around the corner, which means an extremely well-deserved break from the tests and papers of the previous weeks. However, the week leading up to break means a slightly different, yet no less stressful, task—packing! If you’re like me, you definitely go through these stages as you prepare to go home, on vacation, or on a service trip.


In this stage, you’re definitely more focused on the fact that you get to leave for a blissful respite than the daunting task ahead.


Okay, you recognize that some things definitely have to get into a suitcase at some point. But no worries! Break is still days away! You’ve totally got this on Friday.


Time to start. Maybe like me, you try and make it exciting: toss on some music, some outfit planning and thinking about all the awesome things you’ll do once you’re home.

Let’s get serious:

Now you’re starting to realize exactly how much stuff you have. How did you accumulate all this?! How is it all going to fit in one suitcase?

I have all this at home:

It’s totally fine, you think. You have clothes and pajamas and shampoo at home. You hardly need anything! You have so much room to stuff in your pillow pet and speaker.

No, I don’t—bring ALL THE SOCKS:

But then—the panic hits. You can’t remember if you left any jeans at home and realize you could never live without your favorite sweatshirt. This is the point where you pour the entirety of your sock drawer into your suitcase because, unlike at school, you can see a world where one needs two pairs of socks per day plus extras.

Alternately, I need TWENTY tubes of sunscreen:

Or maybe, you’re going somewhere else for break, in which case your stress is even greater. You’re thinking “I need a raincoat and also a baseball cap for sun, I need shoes for every possible occasion, including a visit from the queen and I better pack nine extra bottles of sunscreen just in case.”

This is too much—I’ll do it tomorrow:

At this point, you’ve thrown virtually everything you own in and out of your suitcase in frustration and you may or may not be sitting on your floor in a state of existential crisis. You decide to go to bed and deal tomorrow—your flight doesn’t leave until the afternoon.


It’s the morning you have to leave and you’re grabbing things off of the floor and throwing them into your suitcase with neither rhyme nor reason until its overflowing. You’ve passed the point of trying.

Victory—homeward (or beach or service trip) bound!

At last, you walk out of your dorm, suitcase in hand. Take a deep breath, collegiettes—you made it.

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Emily Rodriguez is a sophomore English major and Business Economics minor at Notre Dame. She joined Her Campus during fall 2014 and loves to write about style, television, and movies. When not in class, she can be found singing with Halftime, contemplating going to the gym and ultimately not going, and thinking too much about Parks and Recreation.