When I was separated from my husband and became a single mom seventeen years ago, I thought that I have reached the end of my rope. It is because the separation seemed to be the trigger to all bad things to happen.
The properties that we were able to purchase and used as business collaterals during the course of our marriage almost got sequestered by the bank because the said business went bad, perhaps due to the personal issues we have been going through at that time.
Our financial situation was really awful that adjustments had to be made in order to weather the challenges.
As I result, I was confused, angry, stressed and all I can see is “darkness”, to the point that I thought of ending my life.
Luckily my mom, who was there and witnessed what I was going through, knocked some sense out of me by reminding me that I still have five children to care and think about.
You see, my children are not just my responsibilities but they are also at that moment, my strength. By focusing on their needs and our relationship as then a broken family, I was able to pull myself up, albeit slowly but surely and eventually was able to redeem my dignity and self-respect.
Moving on, I had several realizations that helped me plan and create goals for the future of our family. My family is my greatest WHY and taking the role as the new head of the family, I had to make sure we are always on the right path for a better future, that includes making sure my children will not experience the financial challenges that we faced before.
Let me share to you what I did:
1. As the captain of the ship, it is my responsibility to navigate safely the ship and take care of all passengers aboard. Since a lot depends on me, I knew I had to get some protection for myself and my family.
That was when I sought a financial advisor and got my very first life insurance plan. I thought then, if anything happens to me, my insurance death benefit will somehow help my kids get through the first few years of life without me – right until the time that they are ready to live a life of their own.
There is also a provision on my plan to cover me from serious illnesses. If ever I got diagnosed with one, my insurance will take care of my financial needs to help me get the proper treatment that I need, without having to ask my children or my relatives to help raise money for me.
The insurance plan also has a third purpose – that is to be something that I can rely on financially in the case that I live long enough through my retirement years. I made sure that I won’t be a burden to my kids and instead be a doting grandmother to my grandkids when I become old and gray.
Will I get seriously ill? Will I die? Will I get to be too old and too gray?
Nobody knows. What I am certain though is that if anything happens to me as a captain of the ship, there are provisions already in place to make sure that an SOS will be executed successfully.
But my faith in preparing for our financial future did not stop there. With the newly-discovered appreciation to financial tools such as insurance and investments, I made sure that it will not be the only one to be financially-educated. I had to pass the wisdom to my kids too.
And so I did just that by gifting them not just materials things but a jumpstart on their future – I purchased for them their first insurance with investment plan. It was my ultimate gift to each of them during the college graduation.
It is a simple start-up plan, just enough for them to appreciate that it is better to start with something than not to start at all. Since they are still young and healthy, the insurance plans that I was able to acquire for them are all inexpensive.
My graduation gift to my eldest, she is now on her 2nd year. She is 25 yrs old
Joanne got her Sunlife at 24 yrs old
Jessa’s Sun Maxilink is turning 1 yr, she’s just 21
As of now, four of my five children have graduated from school and three already have their own VUL insurance plans from Sun Life and the others have their plans as well
Moreover, I have started to see my children living the financial education that I imparted with them. My eldest at 26 years old have already acquired her own Sun Life Prosperity Fund, an investment that is meant to achieve for her a “secret goal”.
Our life as a family is not perfect. Just like any other, we have our own share of disagreements and emotional dramas. I am sure though that crazy as our family is, we have a bright future to look forward to.