Net Worth Week 82 – Things Get Worse Edition

Gentle Readers,
If you follow me on twitter, you’ll already know that instead of staying with me for a week, the unresolved issues in our relationship jumped out and demanded attention, which included my girlfriend staying with other friends. The short version is that she needs space right now and I am giving it. It is incredibly difficult to wonder if she’ll come back in a few (many) months and want to release the pause button.  But I know that regardless of the outcome, the way she needs love from me right now is from a distance. That means very limited direct communication. She can’t have space to focus on herself if I am filling it up with cute memes or with my woes and joys.
Any time I hurt in major ways, I allow myself to feel the fullness of what I’m feeling, but I also make sure that my friends know what is happening. They can check on me and contribute to my well-being. My friends are doing a great job of loving me.
Even so, I’ll be raw for awhile, but that is just something you experience sometimes. I am using the time to focus on being the best version of myself. I am studying hard. I am loving my friends well. I am doing many more things to develop my business.  I am crying and sleeping and remembering to eat.
I’m already a different person from when she saw me last. Quite literally, as I’m now on a new tray of invisalign. I’m sure that there will be other, less tangible changes as well between now and the next time we see one another. Time does that to people. I know what I hope for and I know that I may never get it. I’ll exist in an interstitial emotional space for a bit.
I’m looking into Talk Space, in part, so that my current string of woes does not overwhelm my friends. The weekly fee for access to the subscription is cheaper than a therapist through my insurance. I don’t think I would do the highest tier, which is the only one that includes one 30-minute Live-Session a month. Can a therapist messaging you once or twice a day make enough of a difference to be worthwhile? I’m not aware of having a mental health issue. I’m just going through a lot and a space for talking is good…
How this impacts me financially. So far, I’ve had to use will-power to prevent myself from buying very expensive beautiful shoes I cannot afford right now. Part of no communication includes me not sending her presents or planning any trips. I’ll be spending thanksgiving at my friends house in DC, which is cheaper than flying to Texas. I’m trying to spend time with friends while spending little money, and that is helped by invisalign. Eating is difficult and most menus have food that is just too tough for me right now. I also think that I’ll be talking more walks along The Mall in the near future. Due to growing my business and having a gig,I spend more time alone than this extrovert likes, and at a time when I am sad and stressed that is definitely not a good thing.
In other tales, more things got worse for my family, too.
My favorite brother who lives overseas and whose wife is in a high-risk pregnancy just told us that he has the precursors of the cancer that is killing dad. Hopefully catching things so early means that appropriate treatment will save his life. That is highly likely. Thankfully, he lives in a country where medical care won’t bankrupt him. He can access it. Being afraid for dad made him go get tested for something that has been bothering him for a year. Our dad’s illness may have saved his life.
This type of cancer mainly impacts men, but just in case environmental factors played a part, my girlfriend asked me to get my physical and update my medical record with the new cancer prevalence in the family. So I’ve made that appointment. She also wants me to do a cancer screening, and I’ll ask my doctor if that is something we should do.  I also checked out the insurance available on the exchange for next year. My premiums are going up by a lot more than any other year since the ACA started, but insurance is important. I clearly need to study to earn more so that I can cover the expensive next few months.
My dad was not actually able to begin chemotherapy because he has not been able to eat or drink enough to have the appropriate ‘levels.’  This sounds ominous to me. I did ask a nurse I know for her thoughts. To her, it sounds normal and not ominous. I’m not convinced.
We are anxiously awaiting the next baby. It’s been a very high risk pregnancy and I have a lot of stress about her safety. Baby should arrive in the very near future.

This week’s net worth numbers

10/27/2017 11/3/2017
 Joy 1109 1110
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 46 46
 Moving 286 286
 EF 11 11
Business 5 5
Life 3424  3159
 IRA  15469  15851
 Brokerage 872  864
 Rewards Card 2  -1115  -630
 CC (largest) 0  0
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card -6168 (BT)  -5979 (BT)
SL 1 -105874 -105989
SL 2 -46660 -46713
 Earnest -2725 -2730
 Net Worth -141279 -140668
 Percentage Change -.67% .43%

When many things fall apart at once, what is your self-care? Have you ever used a therapist or Talk Space?

Net Worth Week 81 – My Love is Here Edition

Gentle Readers,
My love is able to work from my home for a few days! Seeing her for more than a 24 hour stint is luxurious. I’m so grateful for her closeness. The badness in the world makes me want to be near her, but it has not been financially, or otherwise, possible.  We weren’t sure this visit would actually happen. So I have some business meetings to attend while she is here, but I am hoping to handle them with a laser-focus efficiency.
MY LOVE IS HERE!
And, back to other bits of my reality.
Still no will yet.  I’ve not yet received my copy of his living will.
Favorite uncle is still in the hospital.
We are done to one pregnant person, because there is a new baby!
I did a ton for my business this week. There is one person in particular I’d love to hire me because I just really clicked well with her.
I’m still studying like a machine! For now, I am ahead in my 3 month plan, but we know that the best laid plans can fail. I’m just going to keep plowing through until there is an obstacle outside of my control.

This week’s net worth numbers

10/20/2017 10/27/2017
 Joy 1109 1109
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 46 46
 Moving 286 286
 EF 11 11
Business 5 5
Life 3001  3424
 IRA  15549  15469
 Brokerage 863  872
 Rewards Card 2  0  -1115
 CC (largest) 0  0
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card -6168 (BT)  -6168 (BT)
SL 1 -105759 -105874
SL 2 -46608 -46660
 Earnest -2719 -2725
 Net Worth -140343 -141279
 Percentage Change .25% -.67%

I guess if my father does not draft a will, then the state he lives in will control everything and I do less; anyone gone through this?

Net Worth Week 80 – Do What You Can Edition

Gentle Readers,
We’ve upgraded to a living will, but no will yet. He said he’d mail me a copy since I will be the one to make final decisions on his behalf. I wish he would draft a will. He’s told me generally what he wants, but that conversation has no legal ramifications.
My favorite uncle is on day 5 at the hospital now, as well. The pregnant people remain pregnant thankfully.
I did some good business things this week. I attended a professional luncheon and met others doing similar work. Multiple people also told me that they are sending people to my business soon. I hope at least one pans out. One client at a time is easiest when you have another job. I don’t know what my capacity for clients is during family emergencies, but I know that my business needs money to survive.
My dentist thinks my invisalign is going well. I told her about the travel situation with my dad and got her advice on how to handle timing. The pain is still around, but much better than before. My teeth are still sensitive enough that I can’t eat hard things and that is impacting me a bit, and I think that this restriction will last throughout treatment.
I’ve been very focused on studying when not worrying about my dad and my business. I have a 3 month plan to get myself over this hurdle and able to take on work in the skill.  These extra expenses right now are stressful and I am trying to focus that stress into learning.

This week’s net worth numbers

10/13/2017 10/20/2017
 Joy 1109 1109
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 46 46
 Moving 286 286
 EF 11 11
Business 5 5
Life 2838  3001
 IRA  15309  15549
 Brokerage 838  863
 Rewards Card 2  0  0
 CC (largest) 0  0
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card -6270 (BT)  -6168 (BT)
SL 1 -105643 -105759
SL 2 -46555 -46608
 Earnest -2713 -2719
 Net Worth -140698 -140343
 Percentage Change .48% .25%

Still I wonder how to convince a dying person to write a will. Any tips?

Net Worth Week 77 – Flexibility Helps Edition

Gentle Readers,
I am off to my sick relative this afternoon. I will miss 3 days of work for this visit, but seeing him before the radiation and chemo wreck havoc on him will be worth it. Thankfully, I just had to pay the cost of taxes since I still had miles available.
It’s been quite a busy week. I put my first invisalign tray in on Tuesday and it was painful. It is stillpainful, but the pain for days two and three are different from day one. I met with my client yesterday to fulfill his last minute request, and earned a little money for my business. I gave my business another loan this week to get me through the next month. Hopefully, that will be the last loan necessary. The downsides to owning a small business include needing to handle things even when your family is in an emergency.
For my relative, I have no idea how he’ll respond to treatment. If he’ll respond. So far, he is in remarkably high spirits. Perhaps my girlfriend was right to believe that my family’s ornery-nature could prove the odds wrong???

This week’s net worth numbers

9/22/2017 9/29/2017
 Joy 1109 1109
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 46 46
 Moving 286 286
 EF 11 11
Business 5 5
Life 4548  3466
 IRA  14213  14542
 Brokerage 837 827
 Rewards Card 2 0
 CC (largest) 0  0
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card -6270 (BT)  -6270 (BT)
SL 1 -105734 -105849
SL 2 -46596 -46649
 Earnest -3160 -3167
 Net Worth -140664 -141602
 Percentage Change .49% -.67%

How many times have your miles saved you money? I think I am at 4 or 5 “free” trips so far this year.

Net Worth Week 74 – Fall is Coming Edition


Gentle Readers,
With more hurricanes impacting the US South and the Caribbean and earthquakes in Mexico, I’m still supporting Portlight Inclusive Disaster Strategies. I may add in Doctors Without Borders.
Another week of waiting for my invisalign, and my teeth are unhappy. The nightguard I have has not been appropriate for my mouth’s current configuration for over a year. It’s taking a toll.
Happily, the great press has resulted in one new scheduled client meeting. I don’t yet know if they will hire me, but this is a good first step. I would feel a lot better about my business’ balance sheet if I had one or two new clients. Lastly, my business finally has a Facebook page. Enough people have tried to connect with my personal page that it seemed like a page could be a good idea. No cost and low effort may pay off. I did not have a page previously because my mentor didn’t. I also had followed her advice about websites for our niche, but people who contacted my office wanted one. Responding to your market matters.

This week’s net worth numbers

9/1/2017 9/8/2017
 Joy 1109 1109
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 46 46
 Moving 286 286
 EF 11 11
Business 5 5
Life 3431  3282
 IRA  13495  13555
 Brokerage 825  825
 Rewards Card 2 -3531 -3781
 CC (largest) 0  0
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card 0  0
SL 1 -105647 -105503
SL 2 -46557 -46491
 Earnest -3606 -3147
 Net Worth -140092 -139762
 Percentage Change .42% .24%

How are you supporting after the latest disasters?

Net Worth Week 69 – Spinning Round Edition

Gentle Readers,
My tutoring sessions continue to improve my skills greatly. Every day I am more excited about the possibilities on the horizon.
Knowing that I will pay out of pocket for Invisalign the same month that my business has many bills due has been stressful. I think I will have to return the money my business “paid” me back to my operating account. Unless a new client comes in ready to hire me very soon. One current client contacted me yesterday for a tiny bit of work that will help enormously, but not cover everything I have going out this month. I should be able to do everything he needs this weekend.
I am grateful that I have this blog, because it taught me how simple a balance transfer is; it also reminds me that the last time I took this step it was because of dental pain, as well. C’est la vie.  My credit score is good and I have no plans in the next six months to take out a loan of any sort. Knowing that I have significantly higher outlays than projected income in the next two months, my plan is to hold off on paying down my credit card so that I have the funds available for my business, if necessary. Once the first big payment is due for my Invisalign, I’ll put it on my credit card and then initiate a balance transfer. That will buy me many months of no interest for the fee of a 2% balance transfer. This is much cheaper than letting it sit on a credit card with an APR over 10%.  It’s not the greatest situation, but I know better how to use the tools available.
Next week may not have a net worth check in because I will be in Texas visiting my love! I cannot lie, I have been dreaming about TexMex.

This week’s net worth numbers

7/28/2017 8/4/2017
 Joy 1107 1108
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 46 46
 Moving 285 285
 EF 11 11
Business 1004 1005
Life 1499  1818
 IRA  13481  13486
 Brokerage 809  836
 Rewards Card 2 -2406 -2489
 CC (largest) -114  0
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card 0  0
SL 1 -105329 -105444
SL 2 -46411 -46464
 Earnest -4033 -4042
 Net Worth -140010 -139803
 Percentage Change -.46% .15%

How often have you felt the phrase “One step forward and two steps back” in your financial life?

Net Worth Week 66 – It’s Hot in Here Edition

Gentle Readers,
My city is experiencing a heat wave, and I may need more bandelettes to continue the good fight against friction.
I’m a bit frustrated with my teeth. I take good care of them, but they cause me enormous bills. I’ve been in constant tooth pain since last summer when my final wisdom tooth came in. It came in such a way to alter the position of my other teeth. That process was painful. Unfortunately, the new position also means that my night-guard which prevents my TMJ from making my pain unbearable is no longer fitted to my teeth as they are. My dentist is aware, but told me that we can’t do anything until 7 + months after my wisdom tooth removal, because my jaw and teeth will still be settling. Then she wants me to do braces and force my teeth into healthier positions to ease some of the pain and tension. For now, I just wait in pain. Wearing the guard causes deep pain in all of my teeth, but not wearing it allows me to grind my teeth causing damage. It’s an expensive and painful position to be in.
I’m really enjoying my tutoring. I am definitely learning a ton, but it is eating in to my sleeping time so I’m extra tired. There will be three more weeks of this, and then I’ll reassess to see if I need to purchase some more. Or if my body can take more, we’ll see what wins out. My progress has definitely kicked up a notch.
Today I’m off work to attend a training for young professionals in my field. I won’t be paid for these hours, but I think I will be much more confident in my business. Definitely worth it.
In more happy news, a potential client contacted my business. He’s been a bit flaky before, but it would be nice to add to my client-base now that I cannot do overtime.
I’m happy to see my debt go down. This is the first time I’ve been under -$140000!

This week’s net worth numbers

7/7/2017 7/14/2017
 Joy 1107 1107
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 46 46
 Moving 285 285
 EF 11 11
Business 1004 1004
Life 500  508
 IRA  13085  13304
 Brokerage 700  817
 Rewards Card 2 -2121 -1693
 CC (largest) 0  0
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card 0  0
SL 1 -105242 -105098
SL 2 -46372 -46306
 Earnest -4008 -4016
 Net Worth -140964 -139990
 Percentage Change .02% .69%

How are you handling your heat wave?

Net Worth Week 59

Gentle Readers,

I enjoyed the graduation party last weekend, but got stuck in the city due to mechanical issues in my plane. Thankfully, airport hotels are comfortable enough and my job is flexible. It will make it harder to get all the OT hours I intended this week, but the travel vouchers will come in handy.  Getting out of town was a definite mood boost. I need to plan for this more often now that my girlfriend lives far away.

I had a client in my office late on Thursday. Not yet sure if they’ll hire me, but good to meet new people.
I’m excited to check out the mattress deals in the suburbs this weekend. Hopefully I can find something that diminishes my pain that does not set me too far back financially, too.

This week’s net worth numbers

5/19/2016 5/26/2017
 Joy 1106 1106
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 45 45
 Moving 285 285
 EF 11 11
Business 1003 1003
Life 1644  1907
 IRA  12883  13106
 Brokerage 685  698
 Rewards Card 2 -1474 -2034
 CC (largest) 0  0
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card -918 -1028
SL 1 -104693 -104808
 SL 2 -46121 -46174
 Earnest -4872 -4883
 Net Worth -140374 -140724
 Percentage Change .49% -.25%

Do you have vacation plans lined up this summer?

Net Worth Week 54 – Dine With Friends Edition

Gentle Readers,
At long last, my client who insisted everything was urgent weeks ago, is coming in for final approval this weekend. Then my business can get paid!
I’m trying really hard to get a ton of overtime this week, while also planning on finally doing my Self-Employment taxes, which I am still intimidated by. I really want to pay off these credit cards and keep them paid off. My project is only scheduled for 8 more weeks, but could potentially last longer. I want to get myself into a really good position before the ability to do so much overtime goes away. Nearly $5K I’d like to pay off in the next eight weeks, and then I can re-focus on funding my IRA.
I did have a delightful text asking me to join a friend and his family for lunch in ten minutes on Thursday. I ignored my packed lunch and met them. This was the first time their son actually talked to me, too. It was wonderful. Dining with friends makes such a difference in my happiness levels. I would like to do this at least once a week. Lunch or happy hour or a walk or something.

This week’s net worth numbers

4/14/2016 4/21/2017
 Joy 1105 1105
 Travel 1 1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 45 45
 Moving 285 285
 EF 11 11
Business 1002 1002
Life 518  1239
 IRA  12645  12768
 Brokerage 682  691
 Rewards Card 2 -1138 -1000
 CC (largest) -3227  -2761
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card -1231 -1176
SL 1 -104375 -104490
 SL 2 -45976 -46029
 Earnest -5285 -5296
 Net Worth -144811 -143478
 Percentage Change -.24 % .92%

Have you ever ditched your packed lunch for camaraderie?

Net Worth Week 53 – Maintenance Edition

Gentle Readers,
Monday I saw a play with a friend. Last night I had dinner with another friend. Today, I am meeting up with two different college friends. Neither of whom were planned before yesterday. I had brunch at my friends’ house last weekend and have plans with humans not my office for both days this weekend. I am doing a good job of maintaining friendships this month. It’s a lot though. I need to get some more things done. Always seeking balance.
I’ve had two different meetings with potential clients and another client may finally provide me with the final details so I can finish his case. My business will support itself for a few more months on this money.
I know I am behind on self-employment taxes and will pay the penalty, but I just couldn’t get to it by March 15th. I paid myself so little that I am hopeful that this learning experience will be worth the fee.

This week’s net worth numbers

4/7/2016 4/14/2017
 Joy 1105 1105
 Travel 1 1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 45 45
 Moving 285 285
 EF 11 11
Business 1002 1002
Life 639  518
 IRA  12736  12645
 Brokerage 689  682
 Rewards Card 2 -585 -1138
 CC (largest) -3264  -3227
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card -1331 -1231
SL 1 -104519 -104375
 SL 2 -46041 -45976
 Earnest -5274 -5285
 Net Worth -144460 -144811
 Percentage Change .07 % -.24%

Are you ready for tax day?