Missing ATM card in Africa

We put up a Twitter post about the power of staying calm a few days ago. One thing we’ve learned through our journey is that we must stop, breathe, and think rationally/logically. When emotions are involved, folks tend to not think as clearly and that cloudiness can lead to making the situation worse. After going downstairs (at work) to the ATM machine at the bank under the office, I rushed back up for a meeting. It was almost immediately (upon getting back at my desk) that I noticed I did not have my ATM card (the one for our main bank account). I traced my steps & began looking in places (the drawer, my wallet, purse, in-the-pockets-I-didn’t-have, etc.) for my card. It was nowhere to be found. I ran downstairs & could not find it either. BUT, I remained relaxed.


I went back to work & logged in to USAA where the Block/Unblock card feature is available. This is so helpful. In the past, banks used to only allow a cancellation of the card (only for the customer to find the card later but won’t be able to use it…having to wait a few days for a new card). Mailing one to me in Liberia is not an option as the import/corruption would likely mean I wouldn’t receive it. I proceeded in unblocking the card and devised a plan that if not found, I would have USAA mail one to my sister (since I’ll see her next month).

My husband recommended we stop by the bank the next morning just to make sure the ATM didn’t take it. After-all, I still have mommy/pregnancy brain & couldn’t even remember if I ever took it out of the ATM when I was finished with the transaction. The bank rep unlocked the ATM & low-and-behold, there was my card. The moral is: I went on about my day, didn’t panic, devised a plan to keep moving forward, & trusted that all would be well. I didn’t sit and weep. I didn’t tell the world or make a big deal about it. I didn’t make any excuses. I didn’t think of all the horrible things that could have happened during the 10 minutes before I blocked my card. It wasn’t an emergency compared to real-life that’s happening…and thankfully, it all worked out. But even if it didn’t, life still goes on.