This perpetually being 10 minutes late for everything thing is getting ridiculous. Exactly twice today I got within one intersection of where I needed to be, with time to spare and then screwed it up in a ten minute way at the last minute.It’s like the universe doesn’t want me to go places.
Appointment A) Didn’t get from left lane to right lane in time and had to do a U turn and backtrack. Finally got to my kid’s school for a conference only 3 minutes late, but spent another two minutes dealing with a new and confused gate monitor and another 5 minutes getting lost in the hallway.
Appointment B) Had the route memorized up to the last turn and loaded on Google Maps. Got there and my phone was too hot and froze up so had to guess. Guessed wrong and made a right turn instead of a left, then had to go a mile out of my way to make a U turn and ended up officially too late for what I was there for.
It’s not a not leaving in time thing as when I try leaving early things seem to go 10 minutes worth of awry (if I’m relaxed and in control.)
Add an additional 5-10 minutes of lateness for each layer of lateness related stress/anxiety, meaning for most things I am 10-15 minutes late, but for something where I know people will be angry at me like a family dinner, I have at times left as much as 30 minutes early and ended up an hour late.
I can’t speak for other people, but for me the usual presumptions of “what lateness means” do not apply.
It’s not that I am intentionally being rude, inconsiderate, lazy, “selfish,” or disrespectful of your time. In fact, I feel terrible that you have to wait for me and deeply ashamed that I can’t guarantee I’ll be on time, even with the best of planning and care.
It’s that I’m perpetually ten minutes late.
Also it’s that, if you’re me, getting into a car and driving somewhere is like arming yourself for battle. Traffic represents a realistic threat to life and limb (I have the scars to prove it) and even though 95% of the time it’s benign, I can’t permanently erase this knowledge.
Also, it’s that I am slightly “mind blind” when it comes to predicting others’ intentions and slightly bad at integrating sensory input in real time.
Not so bad as to be challenged in every day life, but enough so that when you combine having to figure out other what people are thinking with having to keep track of lots of moving objects, traffic signals, and landmarks, I’ve got my hands full.
Trying to add navigation or time management to the mix takes every remaining bit of mental and spiritual energy left in me and I suppose the truth of it is that I’m about 10 minutes short of being up to the task.
Interestingly enough, when I’m on foot or being driven (except by other chronically late people) I have a much lower incidence of lateness. However, I still screw up if it’s public transportation, for some reason.
Attempting various “lifehacking” solutions to solve this thing at last. Will report them as I try them and someday could share the timeliness Holy Grail. Till then, see you later.
And by “later” I mean later than you are expecting me. Almost exactly 10 minutes later, to be precise. Because, really, when you think about it, I’m actually surprisingly reliable.