I'm LATE everywhere I go.........anyone else? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 29 Old 05-08-2003, 04:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I have always had a problem w/ being late and it has always stressed me out. But lately I feel like I am going to lose it. Well actually I did today . I HATE BEING CONSTANTLY LATE!!!

Today was the worst because it is my son's first birthday and we were headed out for a LLL meeting where I have made some friends and I was bringing the snack. Well I got everyone ready (myself, dd, ds)and I started looking for my keys (this is at 10 am. and the meeting starts at 10 am. 20 mins away!!!!) Well I can't find them anywhere which isn't unusual but they usually end up resurfacing somewhere. No luck today. I couldn't find them anywhere. So I think they're locked in my car I was in a complete frenzy. Then completely and utterly disappointed because I couldn't go to the meeting.

I am so sick and tired of this cycle. It starts w/ getting dressed then as time gets shorter I get more and more woprked up. Then I'm usually frantically running around getting last minute things ready. I get edgy and cranky w/ everyone. I hate it. Iwant it to be easy to leave. Not a stressed out hysterical time. I have reached the end of my rope and it feels like my lateness is only getting worse.

Can any of you relate? Or am I just a complete lunatic? I truly feel like it when it comes to getting out of the house. Thanks for letting me vent and for any of you who share your stories and/or advice. Heck maybe we should start a support group. I definetly could use some support. My head hurts from all the drama this morning.

Thanks, Katie
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#2 of 29 Old 05-08-2003, 04:36 PM
 
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Is your house fairly organized? If you know you need to be somewhere in the morning, maybe it would work better for you to get all clothes and diaper bag laid out the night before. Maybe you could write all your appointments/outings on the calender and move them up a 1/2 hour from when they really are. Hand a hook for your keys by the door. Since I have hung the hook by the door, I always know where my keys are (I could never find my keys). Just some suggestions to start you off.
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#3 of 29 Old 05-08-2003, 05:59 PM
 
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I think organization is the key, but that doesn't mean that "getting" organized is easy. I had to come up with my own routines over time.

Lost car keys used to be a problem for me too, until I bought a key ring at the hardware store with a 24 inch chain on it. Now they are always attached to my purse and the chain is long enough to reach the ignition while the purse is sitting on the floor of the car.

We have a routine when we walk into the house. The kids (or I) take the kids' lunch boxes out of their backpacks and put the lunchboxes on the kitchen counter and hang the backpacks up on pegs in their room.

At night I make the kids' lunches and put them in the refrigerator for the next day. Making lunches in the morning used to make me constantly late.

Sometimes I loose a little sleep time by making sure that everything is ready to go for the next day before I go to bed that night, but it is really worth it the next morning when I know where everything is.

good luck - It took me 4 years to come up with these tricks
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#4 of 29 Old 05-08-2003, 06:45 PM
 
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My twins are one today too!! Happy birthday!! I used to have the same problem and only in the last couple of weeks have I figured out what helps me. Getting as much done the night before is key (diaper bag ready, clothes laid out (kids and myself), etc.). I also allow one hour for getting everyone breakfast and dressed, in addition to the 30 minutes for nursing. This means that I usually get up at least 2 hours before we need to leave. I also keep the TV off and have to re-focus myself when I start to fold laundry, pick up toys, etc. If there's time leftover after everyone is ready to go then I do little extras like that. I also get my dh to help as much as he can before he leaves for the day. I completely understand the crazy, ready to scream feeling you're talking about. Organization just isn't one of my virtues and I guess my kids are here to help teach me . With a little planning your mornings can get better.
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#5 of 29 Old 05-08-2003, 06:45 PM
 
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are you overscheduled? there is a good book called the simpler family. i used to always be late until i started doing less things that had definate start times. i usually make plans the night before and we call each other when we are ready. i don't have a hook by the door for my everyday keys, but i have an extra set on a hook in the entryway just in case. since i ahve done that i have never lost my keys, i think before i was sabotaging myself. it's gotta be harder with two! good luck!
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#6 of 29 Old 05-08-2003, 07:24 PM
 
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were your parents on time? Were they people who were late often? The reason I ask is I am obsessed with being on time which means half the time I am early to things. I also get very anxious about not being late, I get edgy with my dh who is very laid back and never feels he is late because nothing starts till we get their anyway The reason I asked abaout your parents is my dad was always concerned about being on time would rush us out of the house to get to where we were 10 minutes before we needed to be there. I plan as much the night before. I have bags I can just throw stuff into,like water cups, toys and snacks. I keep extra diapers,snacks and water cups in the car so if I am running late I know that those are always in the car and I don't have to run around the house. I realistically calculate what I can do in a time frame, I am very conservative about my time frame. If I know shopping will take an hour I give myself an hour and a half.I have a place for everything, my keys and bag,library books and shopping lists. I also turn my clocks ahead 10 minutes I do forget at times it is 10 minutes fast. Also my friends help but do not know it. A few of them are more time concerned then me and knowing that I am keeping them waiting gives me enough motive. I also want to add to relax count to ten when you start feeling anxious about time crunching. I can see you running around the house getting ready, your day sounded like past days I have had. After it was all over and we were in the car I feel so bad that I let the clock get to me like that. Hope you get some good tips
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#7 of 29 Old 05-08-2003, 11:36 PM
 
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whether or not you are disorganized I will not venture to guess, but you are certainly NOT ALONE and as a person who hates to waste other people's time I have often fought with my kids and dh about this issue. i have found that i am the latest when dh is with me because I assume that he is able to get the kids dressed and everything we need ready for the day the EXACT way I would in the IDEAL world, and we live in the midst of chaos and he is no multitasker and has very different priorities. GOOD LUCK and as an LLL leader I know those meetings will be there waiting for you when you are ready to get there. KEEP on GOING.
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#8 of 29 Old 05-08-2003, 11:43 PM
 
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i am always
even for my wedding

such is life
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#9 of 29 Old 05-09-2003, 10:37 AM
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I'm not but my firstborn daughter *is* (she *was* late to her own wedding!!) late for everything. So badly late that we have developed the habit of telling her that whatever is a half hour earlier than it actually is.

I *have* been late-stressed after the birth of every one of my children. I had to adjust to having a baby to get ready.

I have also had the "can't find my bag" issue. I have actually called my own cellphone to find my bag:

Anyway, I've occasionally had the keys issue as well. I have a spare set of keys to both vehicles in my top drawer for emergencies.

Try to slowly orginize yourself, you won't be one of those disgustingly efficient people but it does help.

DB
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#10 of 29 Old 05-09-2003, 10:46 AM
 
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I was like that for a while... until a friend of mine reemed me out a few times.
Now, if I have something at, let's say, 10:30, and I have to LEAVE at ten, I'll tell myself that I have to be ready by 9:45. So when I'm "late" walking out the door at 10:05, I still arrive at my destination on time. Can you do this? Can you tell yourself to leave, let's say, twenty minutes earlier than usual, and then get out the door within those twenty minutes?
Works for me!
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#11 of 29 Old 05-09-2003, 12:33 PM
 
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always late....Always have been and most liely alwsy will be....

The key thing use to drive me crazy... Now i have four (4) sets...
One stays in the car glove box.
One is my back pack with a ribbon attached to the strap( i don't usually carry a purse)
One is in my dresser drawer .
And my husband has one on his key chain.....

Granolamom
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#12 of 29 Old 05-09-2003, 02:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you everyone for your replies. I still haven't found my keys . I had a towing company come out and unlock the doors and they weren't there either. My daughter said someone must have come into our house and taken them because they needed keys .

To answer some of the questions asked:

MamaOui - My house is fairly organizred due to my dh and at my best I have organized chaos. We have a spot where our keys go but I still don't always put them there. Getting things ready the night before is a great idea but I am a true procrastinator and always tell myself I can do it in the morning. However getting things ready the night before would be one step toward success in not being late. That's also a great idea about writing appts. earlier.



Corriander it's good to hear it took you awhile to figure it all out


oli's mama - No I don't think we are over scheduled. My daughter doesn't go to preschool, we meet w/ other families once or twice a week, gymnastics once a week and go grocery shopping once a week. I defintely need a few extra sets of keys!

mom3- HAPPY BIRTHDAY to your twins!!!!! I hope you all had a great day. Organization has never been one of my virtues and ITA agree about our kids teaching us. Again getting things ready the night before sounds great we'll see if I can make myself do it.

mojomom - MY PARENTS WERE ALWAYS LATE!!!! I hated it. And I hate the fact that I am teaching my kids this too. The only difference is I freak out and I don't really remeber my parents doing that. But I do remember not thinking I had to get ready untill my parents were already late and telling us we had to go. My problem is I never think of these things like keeping extra stuff in the car. I am not a planner. I just go with the flow and never try to organize things. I think I'm afraid of becoming too anal!! How stupid is that? I don't want to be too organized, too ready for anything. It drives me crazy that my dh is like that. But I am also a little envious of it too. Relaxing and counting to 10 is a great thing and one I try and remember to do.

I hate to waste others time and always feel bad about that.

Busymommy I'm glad you've accepted that part of yourself. I've tried to just accept it too and it's worked for awhile but now I feel it's only getting worse

DebraBaker - Your words are very helpful to hear. Slowly organize and that I won't be disgustingly organized.

cadiland - I have tried that before and it has worked. But I'm just not consistent

thanks granolamom good idea about the keys

Thanks everyone you've given me lots to think about and try. It's helped a lot to write it all out.

Warmly, Katie
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#13 of 29 Old 05-09-2003, 03:49 PM
 
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I was early by like a month when i was born... I am perpetually late... I figuire there are enough minutes in a month of being born early to be late the rest of my life.. I am usually on time, or less than 15 minutes late... My dad is also perpetually late.. When we were on the board for a theatre co they would tell our family the board meeting was 30 minutes earlier than everyone else... Then we could USUALLY be on time...

At least i call people before i leave though, so they know exactly how late i am goinng to be!!

Warm Squishy Feelings...
Dyan..

It's lonely being the only XX in a house of XYs.
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#14 of 29 Old 05-09-2003, 11:31 PM
 
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i am ALWAYS late! And it onoy gets worse with more kids.

I only have one piece of advice: Move to San Luis Obispo, CA. it is woderful. we were there for my nieces wedding. It was the wedding rehearsal, and we actually arrived ten minutes early. NO one else was there. At 2 minutes before rehearsal, the minister arrived. At five after, the groom, etc. At about ten after, everyone had rolled in and the rehearsal began, It was the same way for the wedding. And then, I was going to church with my sister the next day, and she made this HUGE deal about how we HAD to get there on time be the service starts RIGHT ON TIME!! I laughed and commented on the time thing, and explained to her that in most places, church does start on time, and she laughed and she said they only start that serivce on time bc there is another one right after. ANd then we also went to the evening service, scheduled for 6, beginning at 6:10!!

This is where us late to dinner types belong
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#15 of 29 Old 05-10-2003, 02:54 AM - Thread Starter
 
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It's good to hear I'm not the only only one! Does it drive any of you mad? All my family and close friends know I'm always late and I try and call too. I also warn new people I meet too if we have plans. I tell everyone to lie and tell me 1/2 an hour before the actual meeting time but no one ever does:

You know what San Luis Obispo sounds perfect! Then I won't be horrendously late all the time.

Today was a good day for me. I didn't stress out, tried to get things ready before we had to leave and we were only 15 mins. late! I've been showing up 30-60 mins. late most places lately. Terrible. The best part was I wasn't frantic w/ my heart ready to burst out of my chest. It really made the afternoon much more pleasant.

Thanks everyone, Katie
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#16 of 29 Old 05-10-2003, 01:56 PM
 
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For those of you who are always late. This is not a post to scold you or anything, just to get you thinking. I grew up in a household where my parents were always late. It would always stress them out and then I'd get stressed out. Through the years, I have worked hard at learning to be on time. Speaking as a person who is punctual, it gets very annoying to be the person who is consistantly kept waiting. I am not talking about people being late occasionaly, but people who are habitually late.

One of my sister-in-laws is ALWAYS late. By at least an hour. The whole family will be gathered for a meal and we are always waiting for her to show up with her dh and two boys. Meanwhile we have planned our day around the meal/event, so we are left with trying to stretch our boys through the meal before we have to help them with nap time or we are just plain hungry. Just one example.

Before I had kids, I didn't even mind (that much ) if people were habitually late. But now, it is annoying because not only am I kept waiting, my kids are too. Whether it's intentional or not, it sends a message to me that says "Your time is not as valuable as mine, therefore it's okay if I keep you waiting."

Yes, I understand there are those days where when you are about to walk out the door your babe needs to nurse or has a poopy blow out diaper. Or you can't find your toodler's coat or your keys. It happens, but try to think about how you would feel if you were always the one kept waiting.

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#17 of 29 Old 05-10-2003, 02:15 PM
 
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oh BTW, katie-p-. That is great that you planned ahead a bit. I am glad the planning made everything more pleasant for you.
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#18 of 29 Old 05-10-2003, 04:23 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks MamaOui and not offense taken on your post. It's really good to hear the other side because no one ever tells me how annoying it is! I know that I dislike it when I'm kept waiting. ITA with waiting and kids now. It's hard for me to wait and I know it's hard for them. I have family members too that are at least an hour late wherever they go. I'm usually not THAT late to family gatherings. But it seems my whole life growing up someone was always late if not us and no one ever expressed how rude or annoying it was so I guess it never sunk in. Now I'm unstoppable

Thanks for your post I like it when people honestly express themselves
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#19 of 29 Old 05-10-2003, 04:55 PM
 
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im always late always i cant get out of my own way half the time and the other half either avery wants to eat or i forget a ton of things i try to grt all of the things i need for the next day out the night before we are not morning people so i know to schedule all appts for afternonn . My friends and family kind of expect it oh well ill probably be late for my own funeral lol
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#20 of 29 Old 05-10-2003, 05:33 PM
 
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I just want to put in my $.02. I get tired of the punctual folks telling me I am rude and inconsiderate for keeping them waiting. I do NOT do this intentionally! I am not thinking how I can make your life difficult! I'm not just wandering around wasting time because mine is more valuable than yours. I'm not evil. I just do not have the personality or whatever to be consistently punctual. I have, however, tried to cultivate some skills to help overcome my innate tendencies. It helps some, but not all the time and I still get thrown for a loop with new stiuations. like having a new baby in the house. I would say, try not to take your friends and relations lateness personally. It's not an affront to you. I have friends and relations who are worse than I am and I just go with the flow. I don't let it stress me out nor am I insulted by it. They aren't doing anything to me. There are lots of cultures where time flows much differently and puntcuality to the minute is just not a concept they have. It is fairly unique to our culture and our day and age.

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#21 of 29 Old 05-10-2003, 06:20 PM
 
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Quote:
I would say, try not to take your friends and relations lateness personally. It's not an affront to you.
I do take it personally when it effects ME on a regular basis. Actually more so when it effects my children.

Quote:
There are lots of cultures where time flows much differently and puntcuality to the minute is just not a concept they have. It is fairly unique to our culture and our day and age.
I am not talking about punctuality to the minute. I am talking about consistently being late. I have lived in a culture where peoples' meeting times were looser. At the time, I worked at an international school and if other peoples' tardiness effected childrens needs getting met, nobody was happy.

Quote:
I get tired of the punctual folks telling me I am rude and inconsiderate for keeping them waiting. I do NOT do this intentionally! I am not thinking how I can make your life difficult! I'm not just wandering around wasting time because mine is more valuable than yours. I'm not evil. I just do not have the personality or whatever to be consistently punctual.
I don't think the people who are always late are evil, but it does mean someone else is kept waiting and I do find that rude. Especially if I have my one year old and three year old in tow and they are kept waiting. When I am alone, I don't mind being kept waiting in most circumstances and it also depends on how long I am kept waiting and where I am and what other things I have to do that day. Does this mean that when people tell you they feel it is inconsiderate to be kept waiting that their feelings are not valid?

The intent of my last post was not to call late people evil. It was to give people who are constistently late the perspective of a person who is usually the one kept waiting. I think katie-p- understood that I wasn't attacking her.

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#22 of 29 Old 05-10-2003, 11:05 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I know you weren't attacking me MamaOui and it was good to hear the other side.

Wow Sophiamomma who tells you you are rude/inconsiderate? Friends/family? I am asking because no one has ever confronted me about it. I wish someone would I think it would whip me into shape. I guess I feel if no one says anything than it must not be a big deal. I totally get you on not intentionally trying to waste people's time. That is defininitely not my motive either I don't think my time is more important than anyone else's. I'm just completely unorganized. I think I know what I NEED to do to not be late BUT it's MAKING myself or remembering to do it that I have the problem with. It's also good to hear that it's a cultural thing. Maybe I was from a very relaxed culture in my past life and I'm learning to adapt in this life

ellery - I think we were twins separated at birth
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#23 of 29 Old 05-11-2003, 04:29 PM
 
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I am always late as well...and I do the same thing of freaking out and running around like a chicken with its head cut off and make my family miserable in the process.

With all due respect, as a cronically late person myself, I disagree with what Sofiamomma has stated and hopefully I will clearly explain why.
I watched this show so long ago that I'm sure I'm leaving out many important points but here goes...
I heard something that Dr. Phil said about cronically late people (sorry if you don't like him!) that really came as quite a blow but it made sense. He was talking to a couple whose wife had come on the show (Oprah days) about her husband who with EVERY single thing in life he would be late, so much a problem that it was affecting his work. I don't remember what the occasion was but it was very important to the wife and he was once again very late (one of those drop the jaw and gasp kinda things, but I can't remember it!) and that was the last straw for her hence calling the show.
Anyway, Dr. Phil laid it into him telling him that the bottom line is that he was selfish, whether or not being on a conscious level. He said that it is just a blataunt (sp?) disrespect for everyone he has appts with and mostly his wife, basically telling her over and over again every time he's late "I don't care about you or your time." I might explain this wrong since it seems wrong to say that he "craves" it, but for lack of better words he also mentioned something about craving the attention of being late all the time. I personally connected with this point in the sense that whenever I'm late to things I play "victim" thus making me center of attention even for a second instead of just owning up to the fact I'm late because of my inability to manage my time. ie-"My daughter pooped right when I put her in the car to go, so I had to go back into the house to change her..." or "Man, the traffic was terrible...an accident or whatever..." or whatever lame excuse I can think of so the person I'm meeting with won't think less of me (who am I kidding right??) when I should in fact be giving myself the extra time for all things unexpected when you have little ones involved.
It took me some time to process this stuff he said since he might as well have been talking to me alone and it kind of hurt my pride (I'll admit it, being called on one of my major faults). Things have gotten a little better and I just LOVE the feeling I have of driving to somewhere and knowing I'll be ON TIME! But I do still have my days of lateness and writing about this will help me get on track again.
I do have a good friend that is always late too, and I do get bothered by it, so that helps me to change my habits too. Nothing like getting a dose of your own medicine now and then!
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#24 of 29 Old 05-11-2003, 04:52 PM
 
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I have a couple of friends that are chronically late and/or blow me off altogether sometimes. It doesn't bother me, because I used to do it all the time, too. But, like I said in my above post, a friend of mine took it so personally that she reemed me out and almost stopped being my friend over it. And now I do realize it is blatantly disrespectful, whether it is concious or not. Sometimes people have plans and schedules, and it shouldn't be *their* problem that you can't pull your crap together.
Like I said, I know my two chronically late friends really well, so when they say "four", for example, I plan on five. And that doesn't bother me at all. But I can see how other people feel that this is a disrespectful way to treat someone who treats time differently than you do.
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#25 of 29 Old 05-11-2003, 04:53 PM
 
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Funny PS...I was late arriving to meet a mommy friend to go rollerblading. So, of course, I started to apologize and she laughed at me. Said, "never apologize to us about time...we're from Brazil!"
They'd only arrived a moment before us.
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#26 of 29 Old 05-11-2003, 07:54 PM
 
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i'm always late. much more so since we've got the kiddo (and another on the way -- how will i ever get anywhere on time!: ) most of the places i go, though, i don't have to be there a certain time. our playgroup, for example, is pretty much just floating. we meet at a park or somewhere and the kids are all having fun by the time we get there and, heaven forbid, not waiting on us! of course, they all know we'll be late and understand about naps, etc.

i think the idea about telling yourself you need to leave earlier than you might otherwise tell yourself is good, too. sometimes i trick myself into that by saying i'll leave at 12, for example, and run by say...the drug store to pick up something before i go to meet a friend at 1. i never get to the drug store, usually, but i do sometimes get to meet the friend on time.

keys -- i have a little basket on the shelves by the door. i'm pretty good about keeping my keys and wallet there. the rest of the house is utter chaos, but i do know where my keys are most times.

i know i'll never really be on time and mornings are the worst, but i try not to stress about it. i probably would've been a little freaked about bringing the snack to the LLL meeting and being late as i'm sure i would've been (LLL meeting are always tough since we're late risers), but i try not to stress out about it otherwise. i try to schedule things where i'm not really keeping somebody else from doing something (see the playgroup example) and then i just don't worry about it. i never wear a watch. life is too short to be yoked to the clock!

hth

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#27 of 29 Old 05-12-2003, 03:32 PM
 
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MamaOui, I know you weren't attacking anyone and I can see katie is cool. I wasn't really responding to you per se, but to all the times in my life when I've been told that I'm being rude, inconsiderate etc. by being late. I really dislike being told that I think my time is more valuable than others, because I don't, plain and simple. That's not what I'm thinking and I get angry if someone tells me what I'm thinking. How can they know? They are not in my head.

LizaJane'sMom, I hear what you're saying, but I don't know if I agree. Perhaps it was true for that man. I can get myself somewhere on time if it really matters, like to work, a job interview, an appt with someone who needs to get somewhere else afterwards, etc. If I'm meeting someone for coffee in the evening, or a playdate at the park and it will be for the whole afternoon, then I don't put myself thru the stress. My personality is not suited to punctuality, so it takes a great deal of effort for me to do it. I put myself thru it to fit into this culture, and because I do not want to keep others waiting. I really do think about it. I also follow a lot of the great suggestions you guys gave katie. If I'm late for something casual, it just means we have a little less time together or we lose a little sleep. If I'm the one kept waiting I/we make the most of it. I can have a little alone time to think, or I can talk with dd1 or snuggle my baby.

And no, I don't think that people who feel that lateness is inconsiderate have feelings that are not valid. The fact that they feel that way (and that I am considering them) is one of the main reasons why I have developed some skills to counteract my inherent tendencies.

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#28 of 29 Old 05-12-2003, 05:36 PM
 
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I struggle with punctuality, too. I always have. And now that I have another body to get out the door, it is worse at times.

When I know that I have to be somewhere on time (people are counting on me to be there) I make sure that I'm organized beforehand.

If I have to be somewhere like church, or another big group, then I don't worry about it as much. If I have to choose between getting to church on time and waking my son up, I choose to let my son sleep. If I have to choose between getting up at 6 AM or being a little late, I choose to be better rested and get there late.
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#29 of 29 Old 05-14-2003, 01:07 AM
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I am not as bad about being late as I used to be, but I still am a lot.
For me, it's a family thing. I was late for my wedding last year, which was okay because not only was were Dh and I late, but so were both my parents (who drove together), my sisters (who drove together), my brother and his wife (who drove together) and my older sister, who showed up halfway through.
In my family, we just don't leave until we're ready. So we're late for dinners, coffee, etc. We show up on time for things that affect other people, just not the ones that affect us.
It used to drive Dh crazy, but he's gotten used to it. I can't imagine how much later I will be once I have the baby since even now sometimes I have a hard time getting myself out the door.
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