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Showing posts from January, 2019

21 Months Later, My Student Loan Is GONE

(Originally posted on The $76K Project on 1/18/2019) Today was a big day. Today I paid off the last $3500 on my student loan. The student loan I’ve been carting around since  2003 .  Yes, this loan has been in my life for almost 16 freaking years. If it were my child, it would be a teenager practicing for its driving test. When I woke up this morning, I wasn’t planning to pay it off. I was going to wait until I was a week or two into my new job so that I could be certain of my next paycheck. But you know how sometimes you get a wild hair? That’s how it's been with this loan for the last month or so. I just need it  out of my life . I need to delete it as a budget line item so that we can turn our attention to other things, like our remaining medical bills and Fortysomething’s loan. To cover it, I took the money out of our emergency fund. The e-fund isn’t empty - there’s still a cushion there - but I’d be lying if I said that the lower balance doesn’t make me nervous. I’m a worrier

How I Fought Through Burnout And Found A New Career

(Originally posted on The $76K Project on 1/5/2019) I did it. I finally did it! After months of searching and weeks of interviewing (and lots of waiting), I got a new job. I GOT A NEW JOB! Better yet, after years of feeling like I was trapped in the wrong field, I got a new  career . And that's a really, really big deal to me because for the longest time  I thought I was stuck for good , a fear that sometimes kept me up at night and made me feel deeply regretful of certain choices I've made. In the first week of my PhD program, my department's director of graduate studies asked me what my ultimate career goal was. I told him that I wanted to teach at a small liberal arts college. The truth was that I wasn't sure, but it seemed like the appropriate academic response. It seemed like something I should want to do. I've always been vulnerable to the shoulds.  The director took my response seriously and shared it with his colleagues. Soon all of the faculty knew what I (