When the Universe throws unexpected challenges

April 30th 2019

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There are only certain things in life within our control, and when the Universe throws unexpected challenges, having systems in place to ease the load can make a world of difference. As was the case for Armidale’s Merryl Christie. This 79-year-old retiree sadly lost two husbands to cancer, with Merryl reflecting that the tragedies proved extremely challenging for her.

Three years ago she also lost her elderly mother, for whom she cared, another sad time for her family. Yet throughout her misfortune, she said it was comforting to know that her finances were in order, and money was not something she had to worry about.

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Merryl’s second husband, Brian, was proactive in engaging Invest Blue upon the sale of their Dorrigo farm some years ago. He also had a hefty redundancy after 20 years working with Parks and Wildlife.

“We bought a house in Armidale and let Invest Blue work out the best way to invest the money that we had, with much pushed into Superannuation,” Merryl explained.

Heartbreakingly, Mervyn passed away just a few weeks after the move.

“One thing that was reassuring though during such a difficult time was knowing that the money we had was well invested; it was one less thing for me to have to think about.”

An active member and tireless volunteer at her local church, Merryl later met her second husband, Brian. Yet sadly after six years he also sadly passed away to cancer. With house prices in Armidale having risen significantly, and Brian’s will, dedicated to his children, Merryl then found herself in a worrisome scenario.

“House prices had almost doubled and I couldn’t afford my way back into the market, having sold my house to move in with Brian previously.”

Thankfully, Merryl was given a block of land from Brian as a gift, which she was able to sell and fund the purchase of her own home.

“Brian always encouraged me to have confidence in our financial position and had full faith in Invest Blue, and at this stage in my life I am now very grateful for all our Invest Blue Advisor Rob Pollard’s expert advice.”

“Every now and then the financial world goes a bit upside down, but our investments have done well and I feel we are able to weather through the storms.”

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With four adult children, Merryl is conscious to ensure there is money left for them in her will, however, she laughs that they are all encouraging her to enjoy her strong financial position.

“They say ‘spent it, mum, don’t save it just for us!”

Likewise, Rob is forever encouraging of Merryl to splash out on herself from time to time, prompting a recent overseas holiday with her friend Dot.

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“We had two days in Dubai, nine nights in Ireland, 14 days in Switzerland and then took the train to Paris, it was wonderful.”

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A recent hip operation has put further travel plans on hold, but Merryl said it was nice to know that if the opportunity to travel again came up, she could afford to commit. And with her four children and 10 grandchildren scattered across Australia, she was also grateful to know she can always afford to hop on a plane to visit them whenever she wished.

“When my mother, who lived to 97, could no longer travel, I often paid for my family to fly home to Armidale, it was lovely to provide them with the opportunity to visit home and spend precious time with her.”

“I’m forever thankful that I was able to provide those opportunities to my children and grandchildren – you can’t put a value on those memories.”


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