The Price of Procrastination

My day today started as many others have, except that today I decided that I would maintain a positive response would be different and make a difference in my day.  I blogged about it. 

We've had a little virus in our house this week that has been the source of much disarray.  When someone or multiple little people are not feeling well, it seems everything gets turned upside down because the routine just isn't the same.  The house gets even messier, dinners are somwhere along the lines of hot dogs, mac and cheese and/or peanut butter and jelly, the laundry pile heaps even higher and everyone's attitude is a little crummier from being worn out from all of the above.

I am a procrastinator by nature.  I have been all of my life, but when the schedule is out of whack, then the procrastination is amplified.  Today I paid the price for my procrastination.  My facebook status was "Started my day with a run, a friend, and the attitude that today is going to be a great watch out to anyone who tries to make it any different!! :)" 

Since Benjamin has been sick all week, and Amelia really crabby and now there was drainage from her nose and ears, and Jakob stayed home sick from school, I decided a trip to the doctor was warranted.  We left the house as we always a hurry after no one could find socks or shoes and getting dressed independently seemed to be a huge task.  I still had plenty of time though, so no real need to rush.  On our way, Tim called and we chatted briefly about needing to find a time to allow some much needed communication between the two of us.  In the meantime, the two little boys were having a dispute over something and I calmly (because I decided to be calm today and have a good attitude) discussed with them the other way they could handle their disagreement.  When one drives with screaming, crying children, it is difficult to pay total attention to all of the important and necessary details of driving, so needless to say, I wasn't really observing the speed limit very well.  Just as soon as I noticed my lead foot crushing the gas pedal, I immediately slowed down, but it wasn't fast enough, because when I looked up in my mirror, I saw a black sedan quickly approaching and pretty soon those bright little red and blue lights where flashing on top.  CRAP!  That's right, I said it...probably out loud too.  I would now be late for the appointment that I was going to be on time for!

The officer walked up to the passenger side of the suburban and politely said hello and asked me for my license.  He glanced at the row containing three little people...two in safety restraints, and one not.  Of course the boys rolled their windows down to say hello, and the officer asked Benjamin how old he was.  "Five!" came his excited reply, followed by Joe's, "I'm three", and then Benjamin offered that he didn't know how old Amelia was..."she's one" he said.  As I was fumbling through my purse looking for the necessary information, the officer said to me, "You know he needs to be in a safety booster until he is 6, does he have one?"  "Yes, it was just left in another vehicle, I'm sorry."  At this point, I'm shaking and I can't find anythning I need, and then I remembered that my new registration just came in the mail and was still in my visor.  When I opened it, the little stickers fell out too.  (They were supposed to already be on the tags!)  He went back to his cruiser for what seemed like an eternity, and the kids thought so too, because he promised them stickers and they were waiting!

When he returned, he handed me a warning for crossing lanes before signaling, a fix-it ticket for expired plates, and two citations.  One for speeding and one for no use of a necessary child restraint.  He was quite lenient and lowered my speed so that my fine wouldn't jump up to the next bracket and didn't tack on the extra for the construction zone.  For that I was very grateful.  I wanted to tell him that I don't really ever speed, especially where i was.  I usually set the cruise, but today I stepped on the brakes to slow down and didn't resume it.  I wasn't paying full attention because I was breaking up an arguement between my kids (very calmly remember!).  I forgot to get the booster seat from Julia's car, but I'm a fanatic about having the kids buckled properly.  I totally meant to put the new stickers on my tags, but it's been a crazy week since 3 of my 7 kids aren't feeling well, and I am on my way to the doctor now, but now I'm going to be late, and I really, really started my day wanting to be positive about everything, AND, I really don't have an extra $100 to pay a speeding ticket.  I wish I could have just told him that! 

I thought about trying what my sister-in-law suggested just the other day:  Yell at your kids and tell them to start crying and then tell the officer "Sorry officer.  I have no idea why you pulled me over.  I was totally not paying attention because I was on my phone and my kids are crying..."  Somehow I don't think I could pull that off quite like she could!  I'm thinking I may have lost my license if I would've tried that! 

I have to give him credit for being super nice and understanding.  He did what he could to soften the blow.  Dr. Wurtz (after greeting me with a giggle and a "hello Mario Andretti") suggested that I take Tim to dinner to tell him about it.  That would be great, but now I can't justify the meal check considering the violation fine!!  It will have to be discussed at out planned communication session!

In the meantime, I have taken care of four things that have been on my mental to-do list for weeks.  I'm sure this won't change my habits, but it is an eye-opener.  I'd like to think I could teach my kids not to procrastinate, I just haven't gotten around to it yet!  :)