February 2023 – Life Update…she’s back

Ya’ll…I know. But life has been life-ing over the past few weeks. I planned to get a post up as soon as I had news, and…I finally have news. Like…she’s back.

Post Backlog – Yea…so I still need to get up my 2022 financial recap AND my 2023 financial goals. I have been dragging my feet on this because these are usually such hopeful posts, and my end of 2022 and the beginning of 2023 felt anything but hopeful. But the tide began to change dramatically two weeks ago…

Answers for Eva (and everybody else) – I also owe you all a post (Is this the 3rd post that I owe?) about my decision to backtrack for the millionth time and sit for the MCAT again. What I will say for now is that the course in the Midwest turned out to be a poor fit/kind of a scam. There turned out to be little thought or intention put into the course design and it was mostly an attempt by a university to capitalize on the test prep market…gross. I expressed my disappointment in a firm but professional manner and was refunded almost all of my course fee despite the university having a “no refund” policy. In any instance, I returned to the South on February 1st, having lived in the Midwestern state for approximately eight days. I regret nothing. My brief jaunt in the Midwest helped me regain my stride…more on that later.

My new (old) car – One of the reasons for my end-of-the-year malaise and beginning-of-the-year funk was because I was in a car accident on New Year’s Eve. While my physical wounds and pride slowly recovered, my car did not. State Farm totaled my vehicle and I felt unusually…bereft. I found this out while I was in the Midwest, at which time State Farm also told me that I now had seven days to turn in my rental vehicle. By that point, I had already decided to return to the South but was incredibly anxious about what to do about my car situation. Did I buy a new car? Did I buy a used car? Did I buy an electric vehicle? I really miss my old car.

It was the final sentiment that got me to investigate whether my old car (2018 Ford Focus Hatchback SE) was for sale anywhere. It turned out that there was one for sale about an hour down the road, on my way back to the south. So I packed up all of my stuff, got into my rental, and decided to stop by the dealership. The car was the same color, make, model, and year as my old vehicle but in much better condition. It had never been in an accident, had 15,000 fewer miles, AND it was for sale for just a bit less than State Farm given me when they totaled my vehicle. After taking the car for a test drive, I stopped by Enterprise to see if I could leave the rental in the Midwestern state. The leasing agent in the South where I picked up my vehicle had told me this was not possible. In the Midwest, I was told that this was indeed possible and that they would waive the “one-way” fee because the rental was being paid for by an insurance company. I went back to the dealership and purchased the vehicle.

The difference between my old loan and my new loan is about $3,000.00 but that is primarily the cost of the bumper-to-bumper, 5-year/60,000 miles warranty. While most folks might not opt for this extended coverage, as I had already had to use it once with my old vehicle, I elected to get it.

It shouldn’t feel this way, because it’s just a car, and it doesn’t always work out like this but when I got back into my new, old car, on my seven-hour road trip south, it felt like I got a bit of me back.

A Full-Time Job – I know! So one of the things that happened on my way to the Midwest that I didn’t tell you about was that I had been contacted by a friend (Boss Lady) at University B. We had coffee a week earlier and I mentioned my intention to return to college/university work for the upcoming academic year, while I figured things out. Boss Lady was now calling to say that one of her staff members had unexpectedly departed for another role and that while she would need to conduct a full search for the permanent role, she could hire me full-time through the end of the original contract period (July 1st). I immediately said yes. Then I called her back and declined because I was literally driving to the Midwest. I explained that I had said yes out of a place of fear and scarcity (I hadn’t been employed full-time since July) but that I needed to make the commitment to really study for the MCAT. Boss Lady seemed disappointed but she said she understood.

So…I had been back in the South for about a week and was on a walk with a friend/mentor who also works at University B. I told him about the earlier encounter with Boss Lady and how I now regretted turning down the job. He told me to call her. I declined and said I couldn’t because it would make me seem like the biggest flake ever. He knows Boss Lady and tried to persuade me to reach out but I demmured. I then began applying for full-time jobs, including the full-time role that starts on July 1st in Boss Lady’s department. Two days later, at 8:00PM, Boss Lady sends me an email setting up a time for me to interview for the permanent role beginning on July 1st. I then send her an email back, chiding her (Remember: we were friends and had worked together for several years) about why she was sending emails at 8:00PM in the evening. She responded to my email by calling me, cackling at me for calling her out. During that chat, I disclosed that I had returned to the South. She was like, “Wait, I’m sad it didn’t work out for you but this is great. You can help me out, right?” The backstory is that because her staff member left, she was left doing her own job and the job of this departed staff member including the supervision of 11 student workers. As she said, “I’m tired.”

I start the new role Monday. It’s only through July 1st, and I’m unlikely to get the permanent position (I would not contribute to the diversity of her staff…I know, but it is what it is), but I’m still pretty excited. I also have a couple of other interviews at other universities for full-time roles beginning on July 1st.

Sheesh. I know I owe you all the financial details of this role (and the three consulting contracts I picked up…all of which blissfully begin AFTER I sit for the MCAT in May) but that, like so many things, is for another post.

10 thoughts on “February 2023 – Life Update…she’s back

  1. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! There is a LOT GOING ON. But I’m glad you’ve got a good income for the present and it sounds like you’re really looking around for the future, too. Also, big win on the car situation.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! I forgot to shout you out for the nudge last evening. But as you should know, and I’m telling you if you don’t, I remain incredibly grateful for your continued support.


  2. OMG, my head is spinning just reading it, what a rollercoaster, I would be exhausted 😅 I am happy for you that the job situation improved, you must be relieved. Are you studying on your own or did you find another prep course? Hope to hear from you again soon.


    • It has been…a lot lol. I am relieved from a money perspective. I have been dipping into my emergency fund to make ends meet each month and that has been causing me anxiety. I have set realistic expectations, have developed a reasonable schedule, given myself far more time to prep, and I am feeling good. Right now I am taking advantage of some free and paid resources and I am studying on my own. I may work with a tutor on some point if I encounter challenges but Khan Academy and other YouTube videos are really great resources. You’ll hear from me later today. As always, thank you for the support 🙂


      • Man, you are as good at the disappearing act as Houdini 😂
        Whenever you are ready to come back, I’ll be here to read your post. Take Care!


  3. Wow, that was a lot to take in. I see now why you didn’t get to post (although I’m still fully expecting the follow up posts to come 😅).

    First, I’m just really glad you’re back in the South. The whole Midwest deal just wasn’t sitting right with me but I didn’t want to jump to conclusions from the little I know about the course.

    I think it just speaks to your character so much that Boss Lady never hesitated on offering the job to you TWICE.

    Also can you please not burn yourself out with studying for MCAT while working full time followed by THREE contracts right away??

    Lastly, please give us pennyfolks more updates soon! 🥺

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ha! I post is coming later today.

      I was REALLY disappointing. In theory, it is an excellent idea. But the execution is just poor. You can’t teach courses like that just relying on someone who “took the test at one time” but is a current medical student. You need someone who is an educator or focuses on education, learning styles, etc., and who is focused and being compensated to support student learning and engagement.

      Lol…awe, I assumed it’s because she is tired of doing two jobs lol. But let’s go with what you said 😉

      “Also can you please not burn yourself out with studying for MCAT while working full time followed by THREE contracts right away??”….er…yes.

      I am posting later today 🙂


  4. I’m so happy to hear all the good things going on for you right now! I like your clever solution to be able to more or less keep your same car. And I’m glad you have a job you’re happy with at least through July, and you get to be back at University B, minus your irritating old boss, and with the fun-for-us addition of Boss Lady! I’m looking forward to more updates, including hearing your thoughts about medical school (not so discreet hint to keep posting 😅).


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