You know those people who are perpetually early? Those people who aren't just 5 minutes early, but a half hour early, because 5 minutes would never suffice in getting themselves ready for the things they have to do BEFORE the things they have to do? Yeah, I am that person.
I usually will arrive so early that I will sit in my car and read or journal or even listen to an audiobook. Or play online. Or crochet a blanket. Or drink a pot of coffee and play some video games. If I get down to the 10 minute mark, I will usually call and let someone know I am going to be late. And by late, I mean on time - according to every other schedule. Heaven forbid that I am actually "on-time" or I shudder to think: LATE, but I will probably just not show up all together or quit my job or be institutionalized. Or all three at once.
Yesterday, I was very late. And yesterday, I was very unhappy about it.
Alanna had tryouts for her softball team. Against my better judgment, I let her go to a friends afternoon birthday party. Knowing quite well that the birthday party was from 1:00 to 3:00, I assumed that she would be dropped off by 3:30, home and ready by 4:00, and out the door to tryouts by 4:30. They went to an adventure park where you climb trees and zip-line and do obstacle courses 20' in the air. Pretty cool, sure.
Maybe I live in a fantasy world of sorts.
Maybe I am a lunatic to think other people run on a clock that is 5 minutes ahead of the actual time too, just so I can be not just 30, but 35 minutes early.
Well boy was I wrong.
At 4:00, after not hearing from my kid ALL DAY, I called her and got no answer.
My heart began to race a little.
I immediately called the mother,
"Hi Melissa. Is Alanna home?"
"No, she is up a tree at the course? Isn't her thing at 6?"
"No, its at 5 and it is currently 4."
"Well she is on the course right now so I'll send her down as soon as she is done. Can she be picked up?"
"I guess she will have to be. I'll leave work now. I thought the party was from 1:00 til 3:00?"
"It was, but they didn't kick us out, so we didn't leave. So we figured we would stay until they figured it out. hahaha."
*No laughter or cheer* "Okay, well please tell her to meet me out front as soon as you can. I'll be there as soon as I can."
I got the park within 12 minutes; it really wasn't far from my work.
Then I sat in the parking lot for another 45 minutes. 45 MINUTES?!?!?!?!?!
I texted this mom another 12 times saying 'Does it really take this long to do an obstacle course?" and "Can you tell her to sprint to me, please?"
I lost it. I was crying. I grrrr'ed a little (or a lot), I hyperventilated, and I punched some things within my car (e.g.: the steering wheel, the dashboard, my legs, etc...)
I even got out of my car to pace. All while texting feverishly, wanting to throw up, and wishing I could just pull away and leave my child there to suffer the consequences.
Finally, when I walked into the park to drag her out by her harness, she came walking up the path.
"You are soooooo done."
Needless to say, I had a mother's meltdown.
I did not win the Parent of the Year Award and I will definitely not be considered a role model of any kind.
All because someone else's lack of expedience - and general regard for other people's lives.
Yeah....I lost my cool. Absolutely lost my shit, because someone made me a near hour late for something that was pretty important.
Even if it wasn't important I would have felt the same way, because being on time is important to me. If you are going to make me late, then don't bother including me. I would rather call in sick than be late. I would rather sit in the theatre lobby and go to the next show two hours later than miss the first five minutes. There are so many "I would rather..." moments here.
But please don't make me late.
I lost my mind over time yesterday and I am sure I will do it again in the future.
I didn't learn from this. I couldn't control the situation and that wasn't okay for me.
I am not sure how to resolve this for myself in the future other than to take a Xanex when I know I am going to be late. Ooooo, Xanex! Why didn't I think of that yesterday?