8 Shameful Stages Of Unpacking All 20-Somethings Go Through


Let’s be real, you’re not Monica from Friends or a rare breed of get-shit-done personalities. If any, Mindy Kaling is your spirit animal and you’re a hot mess. Unless there is a romantic prospect in the horizon that made plans to jump into those imperfectly ironed sheets of yours (forecast is the California drought however), those boxes will remain largely intact over a span of months. You regress to being a child as you tiptoe around your tragically unfurnished place but mom is not an option. Boxed wine becomes your emotional crutch as you attempt to refurbish your ‘desperately shitty articles’ from college to ‘comforting classics’. This is your personal Everest. 

Packing at least carries a lively, anticipating element to it. The most difficult aspect is determining whether your face wash will be confiscated by TSA. Unpacking, however, is one of life’s cruel jokes. Everything smells like sweat, dirt and misery. There’s no anal deadline in sight to keep you on track. It also conveniently forces you to evaluate your material wealth and like LOL you own nothing eBay wants. This seriously warrants the unpacking process as an art form that deserves proper appreciation.

1. The Overly Ambitious Stage

Someone sign you up for the armed forces because this aggressive plan to battle your boxes is military ops impressive. You’ve detailed a strict itinerary that will have your new home lookin’ like a pretentious Ikea showroom. 

You even go to the point of congratulating yourself at the mere thought of unpacking that efficiently. Oh and already in your head, you’re picturing hosting a try-hard Pinterest inspired housewarming party, with proper wine glasses as per internet infographic. Look at you, all marriageable material and whatnot. 

2. The Musical Number Stage 

They call this momentum. With music blasted loud enough for an underage frat party, you are knee-deep in tackling the first suitcase, singing offbeat to an upbeat song while the dancing gets dangerous. You are Mary Fucking Poppins. 

3. The ‘I Deserve a Break’ Stage

You really don’t. But you do. It’s been 20 minutes and unloading your embarrassing 90’s storage ottoman has led to the discovery of your well neglected overpaid gym membership. You’ve verified that you suck at heavy lifting so you move on to Snapchatting variations of #realworld #strugglebus. Also Nutella is involved. 

4. The How To Ikea Stage

Four years in college did not prepare you for this. You either need some goddamn text accompanying this pictorial confusion or a man. Either way, that $49.99 office chair is held together with 10 nails instead of 12 because you are not ready for ready-to-assemble furniture at this stage of life. God forbid you gain any weight and your ass is sitting on butt pillows from here on out.  

5. The Sit On Boxes and Netflix Stage

The new episode of Scandal is on and you’ll be damned if the basic necessity of needing shaving cream gets in the way. This leads into drunk unpacking.  

6. The ‘I Should Be Featured In TLC’s Hoarders’ Stage

Why the fuck do you have so many oversized ketchup stained t-shirts remnant of marathons you actually ended up walking a good mile or two in? You are one step short of a Hoarders feature.  

7. The ‘Do I Really Need My Shit’ Stage

It’s been a month and you unpack as the fancy strikes you, on a shameful need to use basis. Some suitcases are untouched and you severely question the value of your belongings (and your life choices by extension). You eat out of makeshift containers just to convince yourself you have no Tupperware to dig up. At one point, your boxes blend so well in the house, you legit think it makes decent decor.

8. The Finally Have Company Over Stage

So one of those people you know that’s always ‘nearby the area’ insists on coming over and you were like “no” and they were like “that’s rude” so you caved. You proceed to engage in a cleaning frenzy from fishing underwear out of the bathroom sink to terminating the unpacking game. Because they will silently judge you for your laziness and think less of you as a person.