Parenting is all about timing

 

Parenting is all about timing.

 

Twenty years ago, my brother lived by himself about an hour away from where my mum and I lived. We lived in a rural area, while my brother was in the nearest city. 

Whenever my mum had a need to go into the city, she would pick him up and they’d just spend time together.

He had a really bad habit on these occasions to wait until she was already there and then got out of bed, shower, get dressed, and then meet her outside. 

This process would take anywhere from ten minutes to half an hour, which would eat into the time mum was willing to spend in the city.

One day, mum arranged to see him.

Brother: “okay, just text me when you’re here.”

The next day, she texted him, “I'm here,” as she was leaving her house, an hour away from my brother. So, my brother got up, got showered and dressed, and went to stand outside, looking for her car. After waiting for fifteen minutes or so, he finally rang her to find out where she was parked.

Mum: “parked? I’m not parked anywhere. I’m still driving.”

Brother: “but you texted me that you’re here.”

Mum: “I am here. You’re there. I will be there in about fifteen minutes. Are you ready?”

Brother: “yes, I've been ready for fifteen minutes and waiting outside for you!”

Mum: “oh, good. I won’t have to wait this time. See you in a moment!”

On that occasion, mum was able to get on with her day immediately. In the future, my brother did end up being dressed in time for mum getting there, but he is still perpetually and habitually late to this day, twenty years later. 

We still talk about this text every time my brother is late.

 

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