Raise your hand if you are a procrastinator.
Come sit by me.
It’s not like I set out to procrastinate. It’s not like I wake up in the morning and think I’m going to be late and put myself behind and show up to a meeting in flip flops that I found in the car and hair in a messy bun held up by a pen and lot of luck.
Procrastinating is never my intention. It’s never my goal. It’s never where I plan on going.
But somehow? Somewhere? Between thinking I have an extra five minutes to whiten my teeth and underestimating the traffic and wanting to wait just one more minute to see who got voted off Project Runway?
I’m always a project day late and a dollar short.
I’m actually really good at procrastinating. Most of the time it works out. Most of the time I get the project finished just under the wire. Most of the time I have a really good apology. Most of the time I just tell a really good story and most of the world smiles and pats me on the head and generally understands.
But last month?
I couldn’t apologize or fix it or figure out a way to make it work.
That’s the date that it said on my license that it was about to expire.
Out of date.
Don’t think I didn’t know. I did. I’d planned on getting it renewed. I’d looked at my license. I knew the date. I’d actually put it on five different calendars and told the twins and my mom to remind me. And all that reminding worked. On March 21 I made my way to our local DMV.
March 21 is when I finally showed up.
Because the best inspiration is a deadline.
Now I don’t know about your DMV. Maybe it’s fast. Maybe you get in and out and wave and don’t even have time to finish the cookie you brought along for a snack. But here? In Texas? You enter the DMV and come out ten years later.
I knew this. I understood. I’ve been going to the DMV since I was 16 years old and so I planned ahead. I read up online and figured out the encyclopedia of documents to bring and I put them all in a folder. I brought a book. I brought my ipad. I even brought snacks for the day.
I arrived early and took my number and sat down to wait and hours and hours and hours later they called my name.
I skipped up to the counter and plopped down my document encyclopedia and smiled my winningest smile over the counter. I was here. I was ready. I had every single thing that I needed to make this journey a success.
Slowly the agent poured over my documents.
Proof of residency. Check.
Social security card. Check.
Marriage certificate. Check.
Old driver’s license. Check.
Birth certificate. Screeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeccccccch. Wait a minute? WHAT?
I needed an actual original copy of the birth certificate? Not a copy? Oh nooooooo. But I didn’t have that I told her. I had been on this earth for a long time and I wasn’t sure what had ever happened to the original.
Panicked, I called my husband. I called my mother. I begged. I pleaded. I asked nicely.
None of that mattered.
The buck stopped there.
No birth certificate. No license.
Okay, I thought. I got this. I’ll just get a new license.
What happens if my license expires I asked?
She looked at me sadly and said the words that made my entire world spin off its procrastinating orbit.
I had to RETAKE THE WRITTEN TEST.
In super fun news?
I had to take the DRIVING TEST AGAIN. You know. The test where you have to sit in a car with an instructor and know every single driving rule on the planet and attempt to PARALLEL PARK. A skill I haven’t really ever learned in 25 years.
It took 9 days to get my new birth certificate in the mail.
It took another five hours of waiting in line at the DMV with my encyclopedia and my new birth certificate for the opportunity to take the written exam.
It took 10 minutes for me to pass with a score of 98 and get my learner’s permit where I could drive in the car with a licensed driver 21 years or older.
It took 5 days to schedule my driving test at the same school my sixteen-year-old twins are taking their driving classes.
It took 30 minutes for me to pass the test except for the part I got counted off for not parallel parking correctly.
It took another five hours of waiting in line at the DMV with my encyclopedia and my new birth certificate and my learner’s permit and my passing score on my driving test.
At long last.
After hours and hours of studying and waiting and learning and the twins helping me study for the tests and two weeks and 4 days of my husband driving me around.
I GOT MY NEW LICENSE.
The moral of the story?
Procrastination is not your friend.
Especially when your birth certificate has been copied more times than this project on Pinterest.
I’m turning over a new leaf.
I’m starting early and planning ahead and making a calendar and checking it twice.
I’m going to be on time now.
Right after I finish the next episode of Project Runway. 🙂
PS If you are in a project mood, I used these scrabble letters to make this fun project.