Priorities trump plans

I planned to be based out of Orlando through the holidays, mid-November until the end of the year, that was the plan. My Platonic Wife, Sarah, has a spare room and loves having me stay so being in town for 6-8 weeks, not a problem. I did manage to get away for a week in Vegas with My Guy, Kirk, in December, and the plan became to go back on the road mid-January.

Best people watching spot in Vegas

Then, something happened. Kirk’s mom went to the hospital complaining of chest pain. The drugs they had her on left her groggy which meant she couldn’t be trusted to communicate/process information from the hospital staff so a family member needed to be there most of the time. I put myself in the rotation and did my daily shift, picked up food, reminded people to sleep, shower…you know the routine. Twenty-four days and 1 open heart surgery later she was discharged. Kirk went back to work, I checked in on the Mom-in-Love regularly and began to plan to get back on the road.

Mom-in-love on way home from hospital

Then, something happened. I went to the specialist about Ms. Gallbladder and was informed she needed to be retired. At first the surgeon said it wasn’t urgent, when I described my lifestyle and that I didn’t plan to be back in town until November he said, Never mind, in your case, it’s urgent. So, I got on the schedule to have laparoscopic surgery in late March, thinking I’d be good as new by early April.

Drugged and ready for surgery

As I recovered I began to get excited about the upcoming European trip with Sarah & Kirk, we were all set to leave in late April. I was hoping all of the soul evolution I’d experienced over the past months would gel as I adventured (as tends to happen with me) such that by the time we returned I’d have clarity and be ready to get back on the road.

Then (are you noticing a pattern here?), something happened. Kirk’s sister had surgery a week before we were scheduled to leave for Europe. While the surgery initially seemed to be successful, a couple of days later there were complications and his sister passed on. We sent Sarah off to Europe (more on that later) and I stayed behind to support him through some very difficult weeks filled with funeral arrangements, family drama and the like.

Dude, with all of these plans down the drain, I’m not going to lie, there were some moments of real frustration. I’m a traveler! I belong on the road! Yet. I’m clear on my priorities:

  1. Me
  2. Family
  3. Joy/Freedom (aka Travel)
  4. Business/Money

Supporting my family and taking care of my own health comes first. Period.

It’s funny, last year this time I was faced with a situation where having clear priorities helped. Last year I was considering a return to corporate to support the house I owned, but when I looked at my priorities it made more sense to sell it. I’m so glad I did.

Similarly, this year I’m so glad I stayed in town. Being there allowed some amazing growth and evolution in my relationship with My Guy. Being there for those emotionally charged times in his family also allowed me to see some new things about myself.

Family Bonding Time

The original plan for Europe was to travel as a Triad. I planned everything, I had worked out all of the transportation, most things were in my name, I’d been practicing the languages. I was going to be their guide. Sarah had never traveled alone or been overseas before. I’m so proud of her for having the courage to go solo, so stinking proud. And she had some amazing experiences she wouldn’t have gotten if we’d been with her. (side note, we got a lot of money back given the circumstances of our cancellation, and she used the things that were nonrefundable, so it wasn’t a huge financial hit)

Sarah in Morrocco

The time in Orlando also allowed me to complete all three levels of Reiki training which has opened up a whole new path in my Spiritual evolution. I’ve given dozens of distance healings and realized it’s something I really enjoy and has added another layer to the services I offer in my barters. I also had time to establish some healthy habits with a personal trainer, and deepen some friendships.

Plans are great. I spend a lot of time helping others define a strategy and plans to fulfill that strategy. It’s just as important to have clarity on your priorities so you know when to ignore the plans and go with the flow.

Like I said, I spent time being frustrated by this, and, I quickly came to see the value in the shift in plans to align to my priorities. I think it happened more quickly this year than last and that’s all I can really hope for, to learn and grow along the way.

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