On our road trip to Colorado, we got a flat tire in the rental car.
There was a lonesome Texas highway, a ratty used tire store complete with many signs warning that the owners were armed, and a Dairy Queen. (Have I mentioned that I hate soft serve ice cream?)
I was completely zen, much to my husband's amazement, despite the two hour ordeal. After all, I am ALWAYS stressed out when we are running late.
(Seriously. Later in the trip, there was a group of us and a lot of unavoidable lateness. I was completely and totally stressed out and on edge!)
Here's the thing: we were NOT running late the day of the flat tire. We had time to waste. I checked my planner, and NOTHING time sensitive was on it. We weren't meeting anyone or on a deadline.
That is a rare occasion.
(Okay, it ONLY happened on Day 1 of the vacation. But, hey, the flat tire happened on Day 1.)
My family is so used of me being a time sensitive person - showing up early, getting upset when others show up late (even if I am polite and don't say anything), and living by a schedule - that they were shocked by my calm response.
The thing they missed is that, since I've started carrying my planner everywhere, I'm better. If something happens unexpectedly, I can simply readjust the schedule. If someone shows up late, I can get a couple of tasks accomplished while I wait. I don't forget stuff that is written down, so life goes more smoothly.
My planner makes me calmer, in control, and easier to tolerate.
In the meantime, those of you who are always late need to still love us. Accept that, for us, time is a gift. If you are late, we've given away something that we treasure and can never get back.
Acknowledge that we are waiting, sitting there, feeling neglected, misunderstood, and used if you say 3:15 p.m. and show up at 3:30 p.m.
Understand that our planners keep us sane.
Go ahead and laugh a little. We are not without senses of humor.
But remember to be gentle when we make a date and you get caught in traffic/changing a diaper/talking to your mom on the phone. We need to know that you value us.