Nov 16, 2009

Are You On Time?

I did it. I left Amanda this morning. It was not easy. She likes Seminary. She wants to be there. I like her to be there but every morning Miriam and I are sitting in the car waiting for her. I pull out of the garage. I sit there and wait. I pull a little further down the driveway and sit there and wait. Usually she comes bursting out of the front door with her arms full of her cross country stuff, her backpack, her shoes, her socks, a cup of milk and a bag of cheerios. But today....nothing.

I looked at Miriam and I said, just like I do everyday, "I am leaving." She replied, just like she does everyday, "You always say that and you never do." But today I did it. The deal that is understood by all is that I have to leave the driveway by 5:10 am in order to be on time to Springfield. Today I waited until 5:13 and then I just left. Amanda called me at 5:19 when I was already in town. She was hysterical. I could not understand a word she was saying. I just told her very firmly but in a friendly tone that I was not coming back and hung up.

I always get ready the night before. I find things, I set things out, I think ahead. I can not seem to pass the joy of this feeling onto my daughter Amanda. Who is very neat and very organized. It is bewildering to me. Out of all my children she is the most capable of having a lunch made, clothes picked out, and cross country clothes washed, yet she does not do it.


What does one do with someone who proceeds slowly or tediously? There are 78, 400,000 results on google for how to help someone to stop being late. Clearly it is something a lot of people have a problem with. Can you really teach someone not to be late? That anxious, sick feeling I get when I am late....where did I get that from? Where do you get your sense of how long it will take you to be ready? Will she always be this way? Will she even learn anything from me leaving her? :)

9 comments:

Danielle said...

What are the chances that Amanda will be waiting in the car for you tomorrow morning? :))

It's nice to see a parent teaching responsibility to their kids. Best lessons learned young!

Jenn said...

Good for you! I did the same to one of my kids the other day. Yours will learn to be out the door in the morning on time or she'll learn to hide your keys! LOL. Just kidding. ;)

Sarah said...

As a person who is chronically late and hates it...good for you for leaving her, but don't be surprised if it's not a permenant fix. I haven't figured out why I'm late so often, but it takes careful diligence not to be. Even the sick feeling of knowing I'm late does not provide adequate umph to get me there on time. I'm not lazy. On the contrary, I am usually spending the time before I leave doing a million and one things to keep my life orderly. Go figure. Good luck to Amanda.

Jocelyn said...

Ha ha! too funny. Now imagine what life would be like if you had really left the very first time you said you would! Maybe this time did the trick, then again when it comes to teenage girls you never know!

Kristy said...

I think maybe my mother should have done that with me at least once in a while, but she was pretty much always running late. I have had to work hard to overcome my inherited tardiness!

Madeline said...

Oh. My. Goodness. This was my life EVERY SINGLE DAY last year and I would sit there and sit there and yell and threaten to leave and back up and complain to you but whenever I actually left Amanda you would ground me!! Now you know my pain. I hope she keeps making you late so you know my pain!

Ackerman/Mejias Family said...

Yeah!!!!!! Good for you! One day she will thank you. At least that was what my husband told me when I did that to Mercedes!
Some lessons are learned a little easier from a parent than another sibling... sorry Madeline. I was the oldest in my family so I know your frustration:)

Annette said...

Good job. It does work, eventually. I vascilate between hating being late so much I plan everything, just like you said;and then I notice precious moments ticking by that aren't filled, I hate wasting a moment by being early, and then start trying to squeeze in one more thing and then...well I feel sick because I am late. Hope tommorow goes better.

Melissa said...

We need an update- was she on-time the next day???