Am I really late, or…?

I’ve had an epiphany about an ongoing battle. The battle is between myself and myself and many times it leaves me 5 minutes late.

Okay, so I know and cop to the fact that this is can be inconsiderate. I so hate to waste time that I don’t want to spend a single second being early.  Surely I can just check my email before I go…

I get that this translates “I would rather have someone wait for me than for me to wait for them.”  Selfish!  I truly try, though, to be exactly on time for those events where I would hold up the show, or be disrespectful and rude…like funerals, the theater, and walking with my friends.  I struggle, though.

And then, “Aha!”  As I am sweeping the kitchen floor in preparation for dinner guests I picture a clear and definitive connection between optimism and being late.

I’ll begin at the beginning.   I wake up at 6 a.m. and stretch luxuriously.  I have 12 hours to do my life, clean the house, and prepare dinner for six.  I breathe out gratitude for leisure time in what might have been a hectic day.  My house isn’t THAT bad.

I take my walk, I write, and I have coffee on the front porch with my husband.  “Cool,” I think, as I pick up a few things around the house and set the table.  I have timed things out: clean greens for the salad and chop smaller veges shortly after noon; quarter cherry tomatoes at 4:00 so that bruschetta could sit for at least an hour; do floors, clean the kitchen and wash my hair in time for it to dry.

I set out the wine glasses and napkins for the hors d’oeuvres and with the vacuum still in the middle of the floor, I recline on the couch to do a sudoku.  After all, if there is extra time to be had, why wait until everything is finished?  Why not have a few breaks in the day?  That’s what makes it feel leisurely, after all.

Time is slipping away a bit when it hits me:  it is optimism that makes me late.  I never expect anything to go wrong.

Cases in point:  I know exactly how long it takes to get to the YMCA, go to the toilet, weigh myself and get to class.  I don’t anticipate a tractor in the road or a full parking lot. I know, too, that it take 3 minutes to arrive at my walking rendezvous unless there is a really long red light.    I know that it takes 8 minutes to walk to the dentist. I don’t expect my friend to be in her front yard and visit with me as I am walking to an appointment.  (Well, that isn’t “going wrong.)

But you get my point.

Do I want to give up my happy, positive disposition in order to be on time for EVERYTHING? No.  I’m feeling pretty good about myself now.

Oops!  There’s the phone.  Oh well, I can talk while I open the wine.  Surely my friends won’t be on time.  They all know that I would rather they be 5 minutes late than 5 minutes early!


One comment

  1. I used to freak out when my wife was late. It was a pretty big problem. I don’t do that anymore because I decided she is way more important to me than anyone else we’re going to see.

    I wrote a blog on this. Check it out if you have a minute. It’s the one called “Wait on her, she’s worth it”



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