As new beginnings near us, I've witnessed a variety of coping mechanisms amongst my fellow college freshmen, along with their families and friends. While some relish in the excitement, others experience intense feelings of dread as move-in day approaches at an ever quickening rate. Whether their feelings are dealt with in a healthy or self-destructing manner, all those affected by the impending change that is the transition into college life have either seen or worn these eight faces of adjustment.
1. The Crier
Yes. We all know one. *Hugs mom*...cries, *thinks about packing*...cries, *sees dog food commercial*...cries, *buys textbooks*...cries (OK, maybe we all did that one).
2. The Shove Master
"Yeah, I'm excited to start school. I mean, I'm on the verge of having a panic attack if I start thinking about it in the middle of the night, but then I tell myself, 'This seems like a good thing to worry about tomorrow.' Then, the same thing happens the next day. It's an endless cycle. I think the idea is to keep shoving down my emotions until move-in day. Then, I'll just totally explode. It'll be fine." Yes, good plan. That seems completely healthy.
3. The Planner
With three trips to OfficeMax a week, colored pens and highlighters outlining their fall schedules, sticky notes on every flat surface and college-dedicated Pinterest boards detailed enough that only a mother could love them, the Planner is clearly capable of channeling all their anxiety and/or excitement into organization.
4. The Worker
Whether it be saving money for school, escaping unpleasant thoughts, or avoiding sheer boredom, we all know one person who casually works their summer away as impending change takes its course.
5. The Nostalgia Slayer
This conversation: “I’m really going to miss--”
“No. No. *Makes siren noise* Nostalgia alert. No. Stop it. No.” *Moves onto next topic of discussion*
6. The Psych Out Goodbye-er
It’s the perfect farewell. Both parties make a Nicholas-Sparks-novel-quality declaration of love and friendship with just the right amount of tears. They share a long, meaningful embrace that isn’t released until only the tips of their fingers remain held together. It’s all topped off with a slow motion wave to one another while dramatic music plays in the background and a car drives away. It’s the perfect “until next time”...until the next time just happens to be the next day in the grocery store. Do we say goodbye again? Should I get emotional again? Do I pretend not to notice them? Oh, yep, they’re looking now. Smile and wave awkwardly from a distance. That’ll make it better.
7. The Roadtripper
“Are we there yet?” Here's to the person who didn't feel it was enough just to get out of high school. They spend their summer, borderline depressed, counting down the days until their new journey begins.
8. The Bucket Lister
The person who discovers all of the fun things that they should have been doing in high school and tries to pack it into 2.5 months of summer vacation. “I’ll definitely have time to travel to four states and two countries, become a writer, take a self defense course, start a squad band, work 40 hours a week, get super in shape, finish all the episodes of "Gilmore Girls" and ensure my cat knows I love them before I leave. It’s totally doable.”