Things have been a little more chaotic than usual around here over the last couple of months. Today marks day thirty of my job as “Nanny Nenny.” Let me explain. My sister had twin girls last January and for as long as I knew she was headed back to work, I wished we lived close enough for me to babysit. My youngest is five and my baby fever has been in full effect for at least two years, so this would be a nice compromise, a win-win for all! Given the fact that when these two beauties entered the world, we were living three plus hours away, the commute made it unfathomable. Fast forward a few months. Factor in a new job for the Hubs, which involved a relocation near family and add in my sister’s sitter giving her notice unexpectedly. The sum of all parts equalled Nanny Nenny. (i.e. Aunt Jenny, which is a tough cookie for little people to say, so we cut them some slack from the get-go.)
Accepting this new role in life meant that the Hubs had extra Daddy duties in the morning, which he graciously accepted. For the last several weeks, he has been getting the kids ready and on the bus since I have been departing the abode before 7am. There have been some challenges, I would be lying if I said it was all coming up mimosas and chocolate twizzlers, I like those much better than roses. But, all in all, we are making it work. In fact, it has kind of put the “Team” back in Team Csordas.
While the earlier rising and the evening prep have been exhausting, they have not prevented me from excelling at one of my super powers. The power to be late no matter how hard I try to be on-time, early has left the building. In fact, I can remember two times we were early. One was to a staff Christmas party for the church were I was the Children’s Ministry Special Events Coordinator. The Hubs and I were so early that we actually went back through messages to check that we had the correct party date. Another time the kids and I were early for a PTA event. The parking lot was empty and the everyone started to cry. Why? Because they thought the event was over and we had missed all the fun. I had to explain that there were no cars, not because everyone had left, but, because we were one of the first ones to arrive. Sigh.
So, in honor of everyone out there who tries really hard to be punctual, I would like to present to you the 30 reasons I have been late over my first month of employment. In no particular order, because I really can not remember when these offenses occurred, just that they did, in fact, happen.
1.) Got lost. Missed a turn. Nowhere to turn around.
2.) Misjudged how long it would take to get there, gave myself 30 minutes when it is more like 35+….The scenic route from the day before threw me off.
3.) Got distracted with picking out earrings that I would later take off and put into my purse because twenty tiny fingers were yanking on them all day. Forgot you can’t wear jewelry around babies and expect it to go smoothly.
4.) Decided I needed to clean the litter box, which turned into a disgusting endeavor that involved latex gloves, borax and vinegar. Cleanliness won over promptness.
5.) HIT. EVERY. SINGLE. RED. LIGHT. FOR. THIRTEEN. MILES.
6.) Frustrated by arriving a few minutes late the last few days, I left earlier. Got stuck behind not one, but two different school buses. Late again.
7.) Still new to the area and not familiar with all the back roads, I took the GPS suggested highway route. There was a horrific accident. I thank God that I am two hours late and alive.
8.) My children are crying like I am leaving the country for a year. “Not the babies, again!”they say. “We don’t want you to go!!” I remind them they will be in school while I am gone and I will be there to pick them up at three o’clock. After multiple death grip hugs and prying hands off the yoga pant flares, I get in the van. Deep breaths. Late.
9.) Rear ended at a red light. By a woman in a rental car who had no insurance information. She apologized repeatedly. She started crying. I hugged her. She gave me her card. It showed she was the vice principle of a Christian Charter School. I believed it would all be okay and went on my merry way. No visible damage done to the cars or our spirits. Thank you, Jesus.
10.) I was early!! And locked out. My sister and the babies were sleeping in. I had my coffee in quiet on the front porch. By the time I got inside it was technically late, but I am calling this one a win.
11.) Woke up late, with a headache and a stiff neck, possibly from a restless nights sleep, or reason #9.
12.) Foggy beyond all reason, every car moving 25 mph. Happy Fall.
13.) Had to put away laundry. Let’s face it, I haven’t been home in a while now and the anxiety over the multitude of piles was greater than that of arriving after 7:30am.
14.) Waiting for my lovely daughter to pack her gymnastics bag. Please note when asked to “hurry up,” she moves as if she is covered in maple syrup and wet rags, with both of her legs asleep. For the love of Pete, please pack your bag the night before! (I am very well aware of the pot calling the kettle black, or whatever that weird saying is, that is taking place within this reason.)
15.) It’s P.J. Day at school!! YES! We are so excited but failed to inform our mother about said event! Now she is trying to leave the house and we are crying we have no jammies we can wear! Because we can’t wear a nightgown with legging, it looks like a dress! Digging in the seasonal clothing bins that I have yet to switch out = tardy slip.
16.) Woke up to water in the basement. Ha.
17.) Ran over what sounded like a piece of wood, couldn’t see because of the fog, so I panic and backtrack. Found the piece of wood and the bonus reel, which contained a nail in the passenger side tire.
18.) Forgot the gymnastic bag. Home again, home again, jiggity jig.
19.) Got a late start cooking ground turkey for the chili I had to put in the crock pot, I mean we still do have to have dinner, right?
20.) Ran out of time to get ready, so I pack my makeup bag, hair straightener, extra clothes, and run out the door. Complete with bed head, gold sparkly slippers and glittery coffee mug, reading BE YOU, in hand.
21.) Got up super early and fell asleep at the kitchen table. Woke up when the kids came downstairs with 15 minutes until departure time.
22.) My son peed on the floor.
23.) The dog peed on the floor.
24.) Had a craving for pumpkin muffins. Made them, from strach, for breakfast. They are taking forever to bake. Must. Wait.
25.) I forgot that I said, “I’ll do it tomorrow,” when referring to the, pack lunches prep-work, the night before. I had wine instead. Note to self, never do this again.
26.) I need to load the dishwasher. Crap! It needs to be unloaded first.
27.) The shower I just took, that I thought was quick, was actually a million minutes long. I do not know this at the time because there is no clock anywhere in sight. I panic when I come into the kitchen feeling like a success story and read 7:03 on the microwave. Shake my head.
28.) My son is cold and needs me to hold him so he can warm up. Personally, I think this is the best reason ever to be late.
29.) One foot out the door and I hear yelling about the snack sign up sheet, the permission slip and how the homework planners weren’t yet signed. The Hubs is in the shower, so I go back inside to sign my life away.
30.) I forget.
And there you have it.
Everyday I strive to be better than the day before. In my thoughts, my spoken words, my actions and reactions. Sometimes those choices push my schedule to the max. Sometimes the pauses, the hugs, the chores or the acts of love take more time than the clock allows. While I aim to start my day with the alarm clock and rush to beat those hands as they circle around, faster and faster all the time, I long to have a heart that beats to God’s time. Friends, let’s not judge each other solely on punctuality, unless of course you are a first responder, instead let’s meet people where they are. Let’s be open and understanding. Let’s tell the truth about the breakdown we had in the driveway when we had to leave our infant for the first time. Let’s share that we got fluff in our hair when rushing to make sandwiches and realized the lunch meat was gone. Let’s not make excuses about traffic that didn’t exist, but instead be honest and real about how we chased the dog down the driveway in our nightgown. Let’s try to be on time, be respectful, be open, be forgiving. Above all let’s come from a good place, let’s try.