“The grand essentials of happiness are: something to do, something to love, and something to hope for.” – Allan K. Chalmers
Boredom, Isolation, and Loneliness of FIRING During a Global Pandemic:
In August 2019, we moved to Gainesville, Florida, to give our boys a more rural upbringing, etc. In early 2020, we sensed possible danger on the horizon and quickly moved up our home purchasing plan. So we looked at the sparse real estate inventory and bought a house.
Just as we settled in, COVID-19 hit. We hunkered down, self-isolating because my husband’s a front-line doc. We didn’t want to unknowingly spread Covid.
Never before had I felt this socially isolated. We were in a new city with a tiny support network. For a social introvert like myself, the extreme social deprivation due to self-isolating was beyond tough. I was going stir-crazy and desperately craved human interaction.
‘Living the dream’ of FIRE isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Even with our hands full with young kids, quasi-retirement turned out to be boring during our period of prolonged self-isolation.
Only with this realization did I understand why some actual older retired folks without hobbies or many friends are bored out of their minds. (Though, in retrospect, I realize maybe they’re not self-aware enough to understand that what they’re doing is acting out their boredom…).
It was only after I made the excruciating decision to return to work that I realized I yearned to be back with my doctor community. They were in the trenches and I wasn’t.
Continue reading “FIRE is Boring: Redefining what Retirement Means”
Bonnie Koo, MD of Wealthy Mom MD has written a finance book for females. Before I tell you about my book review, let me tell you about Dr. Koo. She’s a board-certified dermatologist best known for being passionate about teaching personal finance strategies designed specifically for women physicians since 2016. Dr. Koo has gone on to become a certified life coach with The Life Coach School.
I’ve been so excited for years for this book to come out because I knew she had a great money book for women—and the specific challenges women face with money—in her. So I eagerly loaded Dr. Koo’s book up the first chance I got and listened to it while driving from Tampa to Gainesville.
Continue reading “Defining Wealth for Women by Bonnie Koo, MD: A Book Review”
People much wiser than myself recommend picking a word for each year. After the dumpster fire of 2020, I decided the word I needed for 2021 was HEALTH. I even wrote it across the top of our wall sized, yearly planner in big, block letters.
At the start of COVID, I stress-lost weight, then immediately gained back more than double. Going into 2021, I was determined to fit back into my clothes again (it’s frightening how living in one pair of yoga pants (or scrubs) lends itself to not realizing you can’t fit into the rest of your wardrobe!).
Here’s the list of things that helped me finally lose weight by the end of 2021. I hope you can find some helpful tips in case, like me, you’d prefer to start using the rest of your wardrobe again:
Continue reading “How I Lost my Covid-15 pounds”
“If you don’t make time for exercise, you’ll probably have to make time for illness.”-Robin Sharma.
As I went about trying to Improve my overall health these past eighteen months, I focused on reading books about habits and how to think better. That’s because I knew if I could control my thoughts and manage my daily habits, then I’d see the quality of my life improve tremendously—which it has.
Only the most helpful books made it onto this list. Don’t worry, I won’t tell you about all 128 books I’ve read since the start of the pandemic. 😉 There are a lot of strategies I employed to be able to read so many books. First, I rarely watch TV and I read before bed.
The biggest reason I was able to ‘read’ so much was that I finally acclimated to audiobooks. I use the Overdrive or Libby apps with audio loans from our local library. On Amazon Prime Day, I also bought audio books on sale that our local library didn’t have.
Continue reading “A Healthier You in 2022: A Reading List”
(FIRE=Financial Independence Retire Early/Recreational Employment)
Why would a FIRE doctor who came out of retirement to work during a global pandemic want to continue working once it’s over?
Glad you asked. 😉
The first two blogs of this three-part series were the most emotionally difficult blogs I’ve written to date. Thankfully, this third blog was much easier to write since I have so many reasons why I want to stay in the medical workforce:
Continue reading “Why a FIRE Doctor Wants to Continue Working After We Re-enter our New Normal”
This 3 part blog series explores the experiences and thoughts for the physician FIRE community on why I left FIRE to return to work due to Covid. (FIRE=Financial Independence Retire Early/Recreational Employment)
In the first blog, I wrote about the difficult decision to come out of early retirement as a Hospice and Palliative Care physician to work on the front lines during a global pandemic. This 2nd blog post details what that return felt like and what I found when I went back into the hospital.
Continue reading “An Inpatient Palliative Medicine Physician’s Experiences on the Front Lines During Covid-19”
I’m interrupting this anemically-scheduled blog series to provide a public service announcement: I’m a vaccinated, frontline physician who still ended up getting Covid. If you qualify, get your booster asap, because getting breakthrough Covid wasn’t an experience I’d want to repeat. Here’s what it felt like:
Continue reading “I’m a vaccinated, frontline Physician who got breakthrough Covid. Here’s what it was like.”
Difficult Decisions at the Start of a Global Pandemic:
I want to share with the physician FIRE (Financial Independence Retire Early/Recreational Employment) community what my thinking was to leave FIRE and return to work.
In 2019, I resigned from the VA when we moved to Medellín, Colombia, for the summer. After we got somewhat settled in Gainesville in August of 2019, I half-heartedly applied for a part-time position at a local hospice.
But after exploring it, I sensed it was a chaotic work environment and knew my heart wouldn’t be in the job. For that reason, I ended up turning the position as a Hospice and Palliative Care physician down.
I intended to let my medical license lapse while I walked away from medicine completely. One thing made me renew my license, though. Now, this next bit sounds a little woo-woo, but in the interest of authenticity, I’m going to tell you.
Continue reading “How COVID Made Me Not Go Gently into My FIRE Goodnight”