The time when Grace first told Godfrey she is moving again.
“You’ve got your assignments, then you’ve got your internship, then you still need to find a house? That’s a lot on your plate right now. You’re always on the fly!” with that, he also said something along the lines of “you’re so unfortunate”, implying that it is really undesirable to be in her current situation, having the move again and again and again.
Now Grace was trying to stay optimistic, and moving forward slowly but surely. Godfrey is just being annoying.
“A lot on your plate” is a term used to describe a situation where a person has a lot of things to manage at the same time and is therefore likely to be overwhelmed by all these issues.
Now as Godfrey drove and Grace sat in the passenger seat of the car, she thought, “never mind Exchange program arrangements,” because Godfrey didn’t even add it to his list yet. The comment was discouraging, but it pointed out something—she never realized she had a lot on her plate until now, and she wondered how is she going to survive the lot on her plate.
Maybe you could gobble it up, you say?
No, knowing you’re sad VS. somebody actually pointing out you are sad is a completely different thing. So, knowing you have a lot on your plate VS. somebody pointing out you have a lot on your plate is a different thing.
It’s a different thing to be told, to verbalise those words.