Little Pink Slip

There are some people in this world who can set their alarm for twenty minutes before class starts, grab a Poptart on the way out the door, comb their hair in the car, and still make it into their seat on time. There are also those of us who wake up two hours before the first bell rings, and somehow still end up late.

Granted, I get a two mile run in, listen to a church sermon on Youtube, make breakfast and pack lunch, but I give myself plenty of time to do all of these morning tasks. But I’ll be the first to tell you how cold, dark, and unwelcoming 5:45 am is.

Now, despite my hectic, stressful, overloaded morning routine, I usually get everything done, and feel productive, energized, and hyped up for a great day. However, three out of the five days consist of me rushing out the door with an unzipped jacket while my mom runs after me with my forgotten lunch box. I pull into the parking lot with four minutes to spare, and somehow manage to sprint to first hour without getting a little pink tardy slip.

Today, as I sped through my neighborhood, swerving to miss a deer while simultaneously applying lipgloss, I decided that I wasn’t going to make it. I wasn’t going to be able to run through the halls out of breath just to jump into my seat as the bell rang.  So I removed my foot from the gas, and inched my way along as I mulled over my decision. After a few pondering moments, I was sure of it, even though the clock on my dashboard told me I still had two minutes left. Instead of continuing down the road at a  backbreaking speed, I took a sharp left and veered into the local cemetery. I had time to kill, after all (So bad, I know.)

Was it creepy? Sure. A little morbid? Yeah. Totally uncharacteristic of my type-A, stressed-out, tight-ass self? No doubt.

But once my heart is set on something, there’s no turning back: I wanted that little pink slip. In my four years of high school, I had never once been tardy to class. And today, as I shifted my car into park, I took my first deep breath of the day, and watched the sunrise over the hills and gravestones.

Already taped to my mirror.

Clutching my little pink slip like an award, I proudly marched through the empty hallways, tucking it away in my pocket so I could tape it up later. Because though to every other high school student it may be just another useless piece of paper, it’s a reminder to me.

A reminder to slow down. A reminder to breath. A reminder to watch the sun rise, whether it be from your bed or a graveyard. And most importantly a reminder that there isn’t a difference between a little late and a lotta late, as long as you get where you’re going.

With regards,

M. Rheinheimer

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