“I haven’t even left the house yet…”


I am the type of person that thrives on organization and punctuality. I have anxiety just at the thought of being late. My husband thinks it’s slightly funny when I have little freak outs, and it’s getting worse as I get older.

I was never this bad.

I have always hated being late, but I would never have shortness of breath because of it. Even when other people are late it stresses me out and I even worry at times when I can’t get a hold of them. Is this just a mom thing?

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Since becoming a mom I’ve made it my life mission to have no-one worry or have to wait for me. So much harder than I thought it would be. I pack diaper bags and get kids dressed right as we leave so no mess will be on their clothes. I am so happy when I am 5 minutes early, until I realize I forgot something (most of the time it’s eating breakfast).

I plan most of my appointments in the morning when everyone (the kids) is happy and all they want is to be fed and after that don’t really care where we go. Still, whenever we go anywhere there is always that one more thing to do when you have kids that will make you end up arriving right on time. I plan and even start getting ready earlier than the ideal, but my 2 year old is her own person with her own wants and needs that don’t always make being on time possible. I am very happy, however, to only have to deal with 2 children’s wants and needs (at the moment anyway!).

A story

Growing up in a household of 8 people (plus my grandmother who also lived with us) we never arrived anywhere at a reasonable time. My mom tried so hard, but there were so many of us I can’t even imagine how I would do it. Being the person I am, I would want to leave to go anywhere a half hour early, and if I wasn’t driving myself I would just be pacing at the door anxiously. I knew how other people saw our large family and I think they expected us to be late. I wanted to prove them wrong, but I am only one person of nine that needed to be ready.

The usual organization for that many people started with preparation the night before. My mom would lay out our clothes, have breakfast ready and anything else we needed waiting at the door. The morning would start off amazing (for having 6 kids under 10). We would dress and then go down for breakfast as my mom would get ready.

Then the predictable craziness would get started. We ate nicely until the baby (or one of my brothers) would spill something all over the table. A mess of milk and cereal dripping on both the floor and a few of the kids’ clothing would make us all upset. The older ones would have to clean it up and then figure out what to do with the messy toddler(s). Usually we would just call for our mom to deal with it. My mom would come down to help us. Her hair only half done and not even out of her pajamas yet. She would have to change any messy clothes and then carry on getting ready fast so we would be on time.

Next would come the fighting. We would chase each other around and bicker until the result was wrinkled clothes and crying. My mom would have to come down and separate us and make us sit on the couch while the bag that mom packed for the outing was spread out all over the room in a mess.

We knew when she came down we would have three minutes to get in the car and be where we needed to be, but of course we didn’t listen when she would tell us to hurry and just hop in the car. We would have to fight one more time over where we were sitting in the car, then we would be about twenty minutes late to everything because of all the complications of the morning. Thank goodness that this was not the everyday routine. Usually we all went to school and for dentist or other appointments we would just be pulled out of school three at a time.


It worked for our family and as the years went on things got a lot better.

I still would be pacing at the door ready to go a half an hour early, but some of my siblings also ended up like me and would be ready to leave with me.

My mom is one amazing woman for dealing with all the craziness of having a very large family.

To sum it all up I know it is so hard to be on time, or even early, as a mom. I try very hard but just like my mom we cannot predict what your children are going to do. We can organize all day long but when the time comes the minutes fly by as you pack kids into the car and drive to your destination. My anxiety will still be there, but I know that I am a mom trying to do everything and not everything is perfect.


One thought on ““I haven’t even left the house yet…”

  1. I can totally relate – except, in my family, we were always painfully early! I have struggled in motherhood accepting that (2) I will never be early, and (2) I will forget something if I am. I appreciate your thoughts here. In all of my lateness now, I have come to be much more forgiving when other families, too, are late 🙂


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