COVID19 life Planners Work

Day 107: One of those days . . .

June 30, 2020

Yesterday was pretty terrible.

My schedule was jammed with patients (mostly tele, some not) and for reasons that are not entirely blog appropriate, the day just felt overwhelmingly difficult. My office is tiny and when I work with a resident it feels claustrophobic (no, we are not 6 feet apart, nor do I have any viable alternatives). Try as I might (and I did try!) I could not keep up with my notes AND teach a brand new resident AND respond to seemingly urgent GME-related requests AND act as my own medical assistant.

Once I was home (and the kids were on screens because I had zero energy left for them) I found myself obsessively playing with FI calculators to figure out when Josh and I could both retire (turns out if one lowers spending to Mustachian or even POF levels, retirement could be . . . pretty soon. Though that depends on the world economy surviving and I am not sure that’s a given).

FL (and US) cases are surging and — at least from today’s vantage point — I do not see how this can possibly end well for our country (or the world).

Even my beautiful bullet journal could not bring me out of my funk, which is unusual.

ANYWAY. I would love to say I am feeling better this morning, but beginning a week of call never puts me in a good mood (though this particular call week is actually “call lite”, where another physician covers all nights & the holiday weekend. Something to be grateful for!).

today is another day

Still grateful. Still aware of my capital-P Privilege. And still not afraid to say that — from my vantage point — yesterday sucked. Hopefully today will be better.

PS: I wish I could blame this on hormones, but thanks to the magic of the pharmaceutical industry I am pretty sure my levels have been quite stable. And in actuality as miserable as this post is, I still feel about 84242 times better than when I was dealing with those swings.


  • Reply CBS June 30, 2020 at 6:57 am

    Ugh, I’m right there with you. We’re starting to open up here in Scotland but no one seems to be wearing masks and everyone just seems to be pretending everything is back to normal.

    We found out our nursery will only reopen for ‘funded’ hours in mid-August, which means it’ll only be available for 2 days a week, which leaves us a bit stuffed. My son started 1 full day and 2 half days at a childminder to get us through and had a sobbing dropoff and multiple accidents in his 2 hours there today.

    And I’m just convinced the world is conspiring against working parents…The UK Government is announcing big infrastructure projects but surely investing in high quality childcare and education would pay greater divididends – creating good nursery/teaching jobs, giving children a good start in life, and allow full participation in the workforce/reduce benefits usage. But no one knows how many kids Boris Johnson has so clearly childcare isn’t top of mind…

    • Reply Alexis June 30, 2020 at 7:49 am

      So agree on no one supporting working parents despite how strong the ROI would be! And I’m sick of seeing everyone pretend nothing is happening. This is a nasty virus and we have to protect each other ugh! Hang in there both of you. Kid care crying is so hard. Watching cases surge is so hard.

      • Reply Irene June 30, 2020 at 9:10 am

        Hugs hugs hugs. We hired a babysitter for about 10 hours a week since daycare seems like a bad option and my son screamed until he hyperventilated and the babysitter gave up and got us yesterday. I don’t know if introducing in home child care when both parents are clearly home is going to work for our 2 year old. But putting him through the same thing at day care makes my heart break because I have a feeling they will end up closing again at some point- my state is holding steady for now but people just keep doing more and more of what ever they want and it seems unlikely our case count will remain low a lot longer. I am so miserable every time we try something and it doesn’t work. I just don’t know what to do.

        • Reply CBS June 30, 2020 at 9:40 am

          Aww, thank you! It’s the worst, and triggered all the trauma from him starting nursery when he was 1 and he cried and cried and cried. It took 6 weeks before he could make it all day.

  • Reply gwinne June 30, 2020 at 8:04 am

    I’m sorry you’ve hit a rough patch.

    I think it’s hard to talk about the COVID situation in the US as a whole, as in the absence of national leadership, what we have is state-led, state-experienced situations. My state has substantially fewer cases than your county… That said, I do worry about travelers and porous boundaries between states.

  • Reply Marina June 30, 2020 at 8:15 am

    Thanks for continuing to post everyday Sarah. I think I appreciate your “down” posts the most because it brings everything back to reality – yes, we’re very privileged, but it’s ok to still experience bad days and acknowledge that it’s hard to have a difficult work day and come home and still have to take care of kids, not to mention the current state of the world!

  • Reply Anne June 30, 2020 at 8:52 am

    I hear you, Sarah! I was feeling hopeful-ish at the end of May/beginning of June and now am back to anxiety-scrolling the news in despair. We should be hearing today about our state’s plans for schools in the fall, and I am keeping my fingers crossed that we can return to some version of normal. I also feel like this isn’t going to end well unless we can magically get it together on the national level.

  • Reply Lisa of Lisa's Yarns June 30, 2020 at 8:55 am

    I’m sorry you had a bad day… those are rough and I feel like we are more sensitive to bad days in the current state of the world because life is so not normal right now. Add in call (and the anticipation of it) and that’s a recipe for a really bad day.

    Do you think you are less happy since taking on the GME role? Maybe that is something that you’ll decide isn’t the right fit for what you want out of your career? It’s probably hard to separate that from the angst related to the pandemic, though, so it’s probably best to fight through this period of life, see if things get better, and then re-evaluate.

    What do these FIRE people do about health insurance? That’s what is always mind-boggling to me with our horrible public options (and I don’t see that changing anytime soon). My husband and I want to be at the point where we don’t ‘need’ our current salaries by 50. We would keep working but then if one of us lost our job, it would not be a big deal. It would be ok if one of us lost our job now – we are ok on one income. But we have things like college savings to consider so it’s better for both of us to work and to build our savings. But we think at least one of us will continue to work in some capacity until we are eligible for medicare. But our situation is different as I have RA and one of my medications is about $52k/year (It’s a TNF-inhibitor injection, no generic available). So we need really really good health insurance. But we do both enjoy our jobs. We just don’t like the volatility of our industries (we both work in asset management). But we just hope we can both hold on for another 10 years.

  • Reply Caryn June 30, 2020 at 10:23 am

    I just want to add some additional perspective here. Yes, so much of us are struggling with fear and frustration over what COVID-19 has brought us and unfortunately there is so much more that some readers may be unaware or directly affected by. That is the subject that John Oliver discussed in his last broadcast – evictions that are happening or will happen to so many as the result of people losing their incomes to the virus!

    I am not at all trying to diminish the frustrations and the resulting depressions so many of us do have, but we need to add this to our awareness to push our governments to provide more help for those in need or things will continue to get worse.

  • Reply Aly June 30, 2020 at 1:20 pm


  • Reply Marcia (OrganisingQueen) June 30, 2020 at 3:08 pm

    I’m so sorry you had a bad day!

    I was just thinking about when I last cried and… it was 31 May. Do you know what happened on 1 June? We went into lockdown level 3 when cleaners were allowed to start work again. I don’t know what it says about me but a clean house really helps my state of mind.

  • Reply Katherine June 30, 2020 at 5:18 pm

    Hope today went better for you Sarah and that the new month tomorrow will bring you renewed strength and resilience. Thanks again for your daily posts and your honesty.

  • Reply rose June 30, 2020 at 6:04 pm

    Support. Some days are harder and things are scary. Knowing others face this also helps all of us. Hold on. Keep moving forward and trying. Look for the positive.
    More people, who disbelieved the reality some saw, are beginning to change. It will be pretty awful for a while now, and it did not need to have been this way, but fingers crossed more people will display caution as consequences of other choices becomes clearer. Shame New York City wasn’t believed, or Italy or….. But magical thinking, lies, and denial do run out for most people.
    Be careful and stay safe.

  • Reply Elizabeth June 30, 2020 at 6:45 pm

    Just wanted to send you a hug, Sarah. Unfortunately there’s no magic cure to prevent bad days, no matter how much Privilege you have. And that’s okay! Sometimes the hard times help us keep a perspective of gratitude for the good times. But even if not, know you aren’t alone, it’s okay to not be okay (for a day…or for longer), and also, just as in the past–this, too, shall pass.

    And: new month tomorrow!!!! It’s already bringing me a skip in my step as I’ve started my end of the month round up/review of goals/setting up July’s goals.

  • Reply Nadine July 1, 2020 at 6:13 am

    So, one argument I’m hearing a lot, being in FL, is that although cases are skyrocketing, deaths are down, and that’s why it’s not as big a problem as it might be. Thoughts?

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger July 1, 2020 at 6:48 am

      Deaths are to lag behind cases up to 3 weeks or even more. I think this conclusion is too early. Also yes the demographic is getting younger and are less likely to die (but still sometimes do …)

  • Reply Sara July 1, 2020 at 5:34 pm

    Just letting you know that today I am in a FUNK. Had to cancel another trip and just feeling STUCK. Came to feedly to find your daily post as a distraction and something ‘fun’. Thanks for keeping them going

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger July 1, 2020 at 7:25 pm

      Funk is 100% understandable. Glad to provide a distraction!!

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