I love planning! I love lists. I love ticking things off lists. I love adding things on to lists that I’ve already done so I can tick them off and make my list look better. I love schedules. I love calendars. I love neat, organised things. I love planning out my week in advance. I love knowing what to expect. I love knowing where I’m going. I love paperwork, especially if it involves lists. I love Wunderlist. I love organising cupboards. I love being prepared.
So I knew coming to live in Mozambique would be a challenge for me in terms of these things. People told me I would need to be flexible, roll with the punches and be willing to hold things lightly. I honestly had no idea of just how flexible that would mean.
Almost nothing turns out the way I plan it here. Like seriously nothing. Even to the point where now, I haven’t abandoned planning al together but in my mind I sort of have plan A, B and C running for the day. You know what usually happens though… Plan D. Something that I never even imagined possible happens and that’s what I end up doing.
And it’s not always a bad thing, sometimes plan D is great. And sometimes plan D sux.
So today here was my plan(s):
A) My grand plan was to spend the entire day preparing for my sister’s arrival. I was going to bake and clean and organise and bask in the glorious joy of having finished school.
B) After a message from my friend my plan changed to spend a leisurely morning with the kids (+a few extras) before leaving them with Amina while I went to briefly visit my friend’s sick Grandpa, return to prepare for the arrival.
C) As above, but anticipating the visit to take a little longer than I thought, therefore not being able to do everything on my pre-Smith’s arrival list.
But it wasn’t any of those. I got a text message at 445 (which I slept through) and then a phone call at 6am to say that my friend’s grandfather had passed away during the night. I jumped in the shower, got into my funeral wear and headed out the door at 615. I drove a car load of ladies out to a village. I sat in a room full of women crying over a lost loved one. I cried. I helped get a few things ready for the funeral. I stayed all day. I returned to very happy kids, a wonderful husband and a wonderful house… a little less perfectly clean and organised than I had planned. I got a headache. Lacking the strength and willpower to do anything else, I watched Survivor and then Grey’s Anatomy. After which I realised that the washing I put on when I got home this afternoon is still in the machine. And now I’m off to prepare for another early morning start to go to the funeral, for as long as I can before I go to the airport.
So while today Plan D was a terrible, sad, exhausting version of my day – I wouldn’t change it. So what if there’s a washing machine full of wet clothes. So what if there’s no home baked goodies in the cupboard. So what if the house is a mess. So what if I didn’t get to all those other things on my to do list. I’m pretty sure what I was doing today was way more important than any of that. Plan D usually is.