One morning a few months ago, my four-year-old greeted her Pre-K teacher with “It’s a miracle!”
So what was this miracle? We had managed to arrive ON TIME to her school.
It’s not exactly a ringing endorsement for your time management skills when your preschooler thinks it takes the hand of God to not be late to school.
I admit it, I’m not the best at being on time for things. Sometimes I think time conspires against me. I swear there have been times when victory is at hand and then out of nowhere the clock skips ahead like 10 minutes. I’ve never been what you would call “punctual.” I’ve managed to squeak by with close enough more times than I can count, especially when it’s a work appointment, meeting, or even (gasp!) speaking engagement. Yes, when I am the speaker.
Now I know my habit of lateness breaks every rule and recommendation for leading a professional life. I’ve spent far too many minutes of my life apologizing gently for my tardiness. I wouldn’t say “profusely,” because that then would draw even more attention to the minutes ticked away on the clock. It really would be easier to just be on time – or even early! Those few days that I do manage to make it to something early, I feel convinced that I must have forgotten something along the way. It feels so… well, wrong.
I’m starting to wonder though if being late has just been a symptom – a bold indicator that there was something else out of whack in my life. An underlying lack of balance that just manifested in the clock jumping ahead to make me late. This week we’ve made it to Pre-K earlier than we have for months. And today we were there exactly on time. This after weeks and weeks of that inner clock of mine being convinced class started at 9, not 8:45 like it did for everyone else.
I think it must be more than just coincidence that this phenomenon of actually being on time seems to be starting up the same week that my huge stress levels are starting to even out after years of constancy, and the last few months of even more amped up, concentrated stress levels. Projects are wrapping up and I’ve been clearing my plate for a fresh start. I’m allowing myself the time and space to begin this blog, to write, giving outlet to the chatter in my mind. And I actually cleaned my office so I can reclaim my desk instead of being a nomad, carrying my work station from dining room to couch to kitchen.
This week, my daughter is picking out her clothes, getting dressed, and eating breakfast – actually leaving enough time to brush her teeth. A week ago I was urging her just to swish really good with some water before rushing out the door, handing her a breath mint from the front seat in the car. (Hello dentists out there: I’m not proud of this but I tell it like it is.)
I’m pretty sure I’ll still be late for lots of things – it seems to be in my nature – but I can’t help but feel like I’ve managed to finally step into some kind of “flow” as the gurus always say. I’m more than ready for it.