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10 Things You Learn About Yourself When Living in Your First Apartment

Close to three months ago, I moved into my very first “real” apartment. And though I technically have been living away from home since freshman year in dorms, this is the first time I’ve kind of felt like an adult. I have to pay rent, cable and electricity bills, cook food for myself every night, clean my bathroom, and buy almost everything on my own. I realized recently that there are so many things you can really only learn about yourself when you’ve started living on your own. Here are ten of them:

1. You don’t understand the concept of saving money.

Last week, I put $20 in my savings account. Yesterday, I took out that $20 from my savings because I had a really hard day and was craving chipotle.

2. Your hair gets everywhere.
Nothing makes me want to get a pixie cut more than pulling wads of hair out of my shower drain or finding guinea pig sized clumps of it in my vacuum cleaner.
3. You don’t take expiration dates seriously.
I don’t care if this bread expired two weeks ago. If it’s not moldy, it’s being used to make grilled cheese.

4. You only know how to make a couple “real” meals. (And everything else you eat is either microwavable or cereal.)

I think Gordon Ramsey would be pretty impressed with my Kraft mac and cheese.

5. You’ll do almost anything to save money on your electric bill.

This includes, but is not limited to, cooking in the dark and using the flashlight on your phone to read instead of your desk lamp.

6. You’re a really paranoid person.

Every time I hear a noise at night I’m convinced there’s someone trying to break into my apartment or some kind of rodent digging through the garbage can.

7. You’re a walking fire hazard.

At this point I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve left the oven on for hours after I’ve cooked something.

8. You’ve become notorious for not leaving your apartment to avoid your responsibilities.

What’s the point of taking the bus to campus on Fridays if I only have one class that day? I might as well stay in bed and watch TV all day.

9. You compare your life to Friends almost everyday.

Minus the fact that I’m not living in an huge, unrealistic apartment in New York City, don’t have an awesome 90s wardrobe, great hair, and an on-again-off-again boyfriend who has a pet monkey, Rachel Green and I are essentially the same person.

10. You still don’t feel like a real adult yet, but that’s okay.

Does anyone actually feel like a real adult? Or is everyone really good at pretending they have their whole lives together? (I hope it’s the second one.)


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Rachel is an English major and a Senior at UMass Amherst, a student assistant at W.E.B. Dubois Library, an expert at procrastinating and tripping over stuff, and likes dinosaurs, tea, video games, and all things sparkly.
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