ON LATENESS AND DISREGARD

lamp in rain

The calming sound of rain continued throughout the day having carried over from the night before. I would have preferred to stay indoors but an appointment and errands had me out most of the day. But after all was said and done I had seen my children today.

The girls were on their way to Florida for their last cheer competition. It was my week with the children but I let the girls go with their father as a trip to Florida was not in my budget. I also did not approve of this activity from the start as the new wife signed up the girls for cheer behind my back and against my wishes. Gymnastics and dance were my options.

Our arranged meeting time for dropping off my son and my seeing the girls before they left was 13,45h. I hurried from my appointment, stopped by the grocery store, and even had time for a quick shower before the designated time. I was on time. He was not.

I went to the apartment complex clubhouse and waited.

Then I waited some more. I sent a text message to the ex after 22 minutes of his being late, knowing he is always late. Somehow I cannot understand how a German is always late and unorganised. This is my greatest peeve in life. Lateness. 

Five minutes I can understand. But an hour is unacceptable. He went on to tell me they were still packing though they have known about this trip for weeks. Then he kept saying he was on his way though it takes no more than ten minutes from his place to ours. When he arrived he did not bother coming into the clubhouse. He knew what would happen if he did.

I hugged the girls and noticed Saffron's wrapped foot. Pink gauze covering three stitches from a broken snowglobe incident at their father's house no less than an hour after I dropped them off last week. She was wearing sandals as were her siblings. Sandals and a winter jacket. But my son was wearing shorts and a short-sleeved shirt. 'Oh, but he is just coming here to your place' was the excuse when I demanded to know why the children are wearing summer clothes in 9 degree Celsius weather. And 'Oh but it's warm in Florida' was the excuse for the girls.

As the girls hurried off to the car for their trip to the airport, I asked them to get their father. He came inside and I let him know how this one hour of making me wait was unacceptable. 'But I didn't know you had somewhere to be'. Why was that relevant, I wondered. Why does it matter if I had to be anywhere at all. It is simply a matter of inconsideration of anyone else's time. A disregard to the fact that others have a life and schedules to follow.

My son and I stopped by our new place so he can change into winter clothes. He was cold and did not wish to go anywhere. After he put on his jeans, socks and shoes, and his winter jacket he felt much better and was glad to walk around despite the rain. After dinner he told me he would text me more on the weeks he is not at my place but his stepmother tells him he cannot.

'[She] said I can text you, but not a lot.' I looked at my son and told him to disregard her words and that he can text me anytime he wants to do so. But this is not the first time I have heard of such complaints from my children and I am sure it will not be the last. But that is another issue.

Being punctual and considerate of other people's time is something I wish to instill in my children. I am happy I have a husband who also believes in being on time wherever he goes. Certainly there might be situations out of our control which would cause us to be late. But for the most part, with careful planning most lateness can be avoided.