Sunday, July 28, 2019

Personal Update in July!

As I am writing this post, it has been a month since I last gave an update about my situation in the previous post which wasn't so pleasant and I must admit it has been one of the more challenging periods in my life that I have to death with. 

On the usual routine year, I would be doing my half yearly review during this period to check how I was performing on my interim review. Not this time round though.

But first, I'd like to express my gratitude to everyone who has left me a message in my previous post as well as those who dropped me a private email concerning my current situation. I am truly appreciative of all the help that was rendered to me, especially those who offered me referrals for job as well as referrals for renting out the room. 

OK let's get right to it one by one. 

Hospital Bills & Conditions

What was thought to be an isolation case of an ischemic stroke developed into something more. He developed an infection in his lungs and was diagnosed Klebsiella Pneumonia, a bacteria CRE that is present in his blood. The doctors had to give him multiple antibiotics for that. 

Just when we thought the worst was over, his right leg developed a deep vein thrombosis (DVT) , which is essentially a blood clot surrounding legs that cannot move. Apparently, this can happen to a lot of people even if they are healthy if they are in a prolonged case of sitting down or long flights. 

The DVT is dangerous because it can travel to the lungs which can develop a pulmonary embolism, which happened to my dad. His breathing was visibly more difficult, his pulse rate is higher and his oxygen levels was down. The doctor had to install an Ivc filter to prevent the blood clot from travelling to the lungs. The Ivc filter, under the Prudential early stage crisis, was one of the early criteria to claim for a pulmonary embolism. 

As the doctor was treating the DVT with blood thinners, something else happened. The blood thinners can cause the brain area to bleed especially for patients who are still recovering from stroke and it is what happened to my dad. There was some haemorrhage seen through the X-Ray and the doctors had to reverse engineer the blood thinners quickly in order not to allow the blood and swelling to worsen. 

We were starting to get really worried over the situation and also financially because prolonged staying in the hospital wasn't an option. 

My Dad was finally discharged after spending 23 days in the hospital, 16 days in ICU and 7 days in General Ward. 

The hospital bills, including doctors consultation and medicine came up to about $110,000.

Together with the everything else including the International SOS, post physiotherapists, medicines and other things, it adds up close to about $150,000.

My dad had a basic prudential insurance which he bought back in Indonesia and I think we'd be able to claim only the basic minimum. 

If there's one thing that I regretted, especially being a financial blogger, is that I should have settled their insurances long time ago. I had that done for my immediate family for wife and children but failed to consider the fact that my parents is my issue as well. The price to pay is $150k burnt in my pocket. 

Having said that, if my Dad can slowly recover from all this, I think this is almost a life changing lessons for all of us and nothing is more worthy than seeing him healthy again. 

Taking Interim Care of My Dad's Business

My Dad runs a business back in Jakarta which was independent from what I did so for most of the time, I didn't exactly know the details of what he's up to. 

Given the current situation, there's a need to step in to take care of the day to day operations and payments. 

After studying it for several weeks, together with my Mum, we learnt that it is in the midst of having a cash flow issues. 

The business is not a mess, it is just messy. 

It takes time to reshape and change the business model and it is exactly what I am going to do, if it were up to me. 

I ploughed in $350k to help run the daily needs of the cash flow and we are in the midst of changing the business model so that it will be more cash flow generative in the future. 

This will also be my interim job while waiting for my Dad to recover. 


In my previous post, I mentioned that I was hoping to rent out one room in order to help with the cash flow. 

There were a few inquiries and visits but most lamented the room wasn't big enough and/or they didn't like staying with a landlord under the same roof. 

So I opened up the possibility for more options. 

I asked my agents to put up the property for sale and also for leases.

If a sale happens, our plan was then to downgrade to a resale hdb given that we are now both Singaporeans and we could take advantage of that. This option gives the best scenario in terms of stretching the cash flows to the best use. 

If a lease happens, then we'd probably move to rent at somewhere further and cheaper, while waiting for the possibility of a sale (together with tenancy). Cash flow would still improve in the interim. 

In the end, we managed to secure a 3 years lease with a Myanmar family tenant so we'd be moving out to our new place sometime in early Aug. It's also something that packed our schedule in the past few weeks given that we had to dispose furnitures, find a contractor for some bits of renovation, find a mover and so on. 


In my previous post, I also mentioned that I am back on the look out for a new job.

This is quite ironic given that I had only chosen to do a sabbatical a few months ago and the plan wasn't to go back to another corporate so fast but life takes a turn so quickly that I had to make adjustment to it at this juncture because of the need to navigate the cash flow. 

I went for 3 interviews - one at a French beauty MNC, one at Ntuc social enterprise and one at a tech start-up company. 

I managed to secure the position at the tech start-up which will commence early September. 

Being a start-up, the company is small and the hierarchy is lean. There's the Ceo, then there's me who leads the Finance, then everyone else is a computer engineer. 

The start up environment is totally different and there'll be plenty of hands on things which needed intervention from ourselves, unlike MNCs where you can easily delegate your things to your staff. 


I've not been monitoring the market as much as I did in the past because my schedule was packed up right to the neck but I did have a glance every now and then.

The stock market was much indifferent as they were in the past few months as the market is still showing plenty of buoyant activities which means we don't really have grapes hanging on the floors yet.

I'm still holding on to my Vicom position of 31,300 shares but other than that there isn't really anything compelling that I wanted to add to right now.


So there is it you can see how crazy busy I was in the past month. 

From having to take care of my Dad in hospital (and now at home), I also had to take care of his business in the interim (traveling back and forth), I had to deal with moving house, and also starting a new job next month.

Chances are my blogging time will have to take a step back while I continue to sort out these things and hopefully when things are much clearer, I'll have more time to blog again.

Alternatively, another dark horse scenario is if we manage to sell our current property and moved into a resale hdb, it would give our cash flow a very big boost and that would virtually almost solve all the financial issues at hand that we've got.

Until then, thanks again for all the reader's support! 


  1. Bro, keep the spirits high and I am sure you will get thru this soon. One thing you have walked the talk: family before anything else including self. My prayers for your dad's recovery and ease in whatever steps you take hereon.

    1. Thank you for your words of encouragement. There's truly a lesson that we learnt from all these despite stressing how important health and family is throughout the years, it doesn't really get appreciated until something really happens and knock on your doors.

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  2. Your plate is so full! It seems like it's just you and your mum taking care of everything. Prayers for you all, and a speedy recovery for your dad. God bless.

    1. Hi Latemonkey

      Thanks for your kind words. Indeed, I've never felt so packed before with so many stuff happening at one go I'm hoping these things will pass through quickly.

  3. B,

    My regards to you dad and to his recovery.

    Admiration to your attitude and resilience.

    Life has thrown some challenges to your laid out plans...

    Instead of whining or complaining, you have shown courage and flexibility to make the necessary adjustments.

    Focus on people that matter.

    Peace be with you, our young brethren.

    1. Hi SMOL

      Thank you!

      I feel like life likes to throw us into some bits of spanners and entertainments they wouldn't just allow us to rest on our barrels. Maybe it's also a test to our testament of how ready we are in preparing not just for the good but also the bad.

  4. Stay strong! One of those life journey tough tests that many of us have to go through and then become even stronger.

  5. Just stay in there and remember how bad the situation is right now, all things will pass.

    1. Thank you, will get it in mind for this.

  6. Things have already turn for the better. Keep your health and stay positive. Onward Best.

  7. Hi B,
    I'm amazed by your resilence and positive outlook despite what had happened! And as the saying goes - when are you down, the only thing that can happen is for you to move up and i hope that can happen to your family and you quickly!


    1. Hi QL

      Thank you. I hope things will only get better and move up from here, no more going down the hill!

  8. Hi B,
    It's been awhile. My deepest condolences. And I pray for God to give you the best guidance. Often his guidance is more long term and less focus on $ but more on building our character according to His word and way.

    Often times, trials can built us up. And it is perhaps the best thing that can happened in our life when we looked back.

    I lost few thousands dollars in soccer betting addiction. Much of my hard-earned money from tuition during my army time is lost. But I learnt not to place bets excessively, and risk mgmt.

    Painful failed relationships allowed me to eventually find my wife today. Above all, taught me to manage a relationships better.

    Some failed career at my "so called" peak in my own standard, help me in humbleness and treat colleagues better nowadays and be more compassionate, but also more wise/realistic about company/culture etc.

    And yes, my sick bay experience of near life and death, helped me to understand life better today. Not in monetary terms, but placing more focus on relationships building with people. When you can build meaningful relationships, this is true happiness to me.

    God allows things to happen to us for us to learn and grow, when we realised. But He will not allow it to be too big that it will crush us completely without recovery.

    God bless and all prayers for you. And please pray frequently for His will and His best plans for you. Remember its "His plans, not our own plans".

    May God's peace be with your family, always.

    1. HI Rolf

      It's been a while.

      Thank you for your long but very meaningful comment.

      Like yourself, I am a big believer of Christ. I believe there's only as much thing we could control the rest is up to him to guide us and give us direction in life.

      With this episode in my life, I'm sure myself and my family have learnt a ton of things and will never repeat the same mistakes again. Sometimes I do wish for time to rewind but I know it's not possible. The only possible thing is to look to the future and let things not repeat again.

      Thanks again Rolf for sharing your story.

  9. 你那么有钱,小意思啦。

    1. Someone is going through hardship but still try his best to remain positive and sharing for the benefits of others.

      If you have nth good to say, it's best that you keep your mouth shut.

  10. Hi B,

    I am very sorry to hear about your dad's conditions. Hope for his speedy recovery.

    Life can throw us up and down, but with resilience the worse will eventually get over.

    Hang in there, stay strong and fighting!

    1. Hi Rainbowcoin

      Thank you for your encouragement. With all the support from you guys, will mentally toughen up myself to get through this.

  11. not sure how i would have done. but everything you just did just seem so logical and methodical, that it somehow makes amazing sense.

    judging by your ability, these monies will come back to you in no time.

    keep the faith strong and all will come to pass.

    1. Hi FC

      Thank you.

      When we are hit by something like this, it is only we realize nothing else is truly as important. The rest will take care of itself. Hopefully there's still good amends for that.

  12. Glad to hear things are looking more positive now. I trust that everything will work out!

  13. Hi B

    Unexpected risks and downsides comes from unfamthomable areas with unimaginable blind spots. I hope that your finances and parents recover from this great crash and become more resilient.

    It takes much hunility and courage to share your troubles and mistakes in public. Thank you for sharing your lessons so that others whom have (FIRE ) in their heart can learn to plan better ahead.

    1. Hi INTJ

      As bloggers we often write about something that's only happened in theory but to be able to experience it first hand I hope to be able to help those similar in needs too.

  14. It’s good that you have the courage and strength of character to make the necessary changes instead of sitting around lamenting over how unfair life may seem. I am sure amidst all the upheavals there will be opportunities to grow and be even more successful than before. All the best and wish your father better health.

  15. Hi Brian,

    Sorry to hear about your dad's health issue. I hope things will only get better from now on.

    Sticking with your family is what makes it a family. Stay strong.

  16. Hi Brian,

    Cheer up and stay strong!!!

  17. All the best bro- you will get through it

  18. Thx for the sharing. It really highlight the importance of insurance not just for our self BUT also our other family members even extended family maybe. Because if something happen to them, we might need to bear the financial burden also.

    God bless you and family. Wish for speedy recovery for ur dad!

  19. Hi B, stay strong man. Every time when going get toughs I remind myself is a test of life. We just have to go through it.


  20. Hi B,

    Sounds like your father has a good son. For that, I hope your fortune turns soon and the Father above will help you sort out the messy business eventually. Looks like your fortune is turning already. You found a new job pretty quickly. Do update us when you have more good news, like finding a buyer for your current property.

    When calculating readiness for financial freedom, the part that makes me most nervous is expenses relating to aged dependents. Healthcare cost for the aged is unpredictable. We don't know what disease will strike our parents. How long they will live. Parents suffering from expensive chronic disease, requiring long-term professional care and living up to their 90s can drain the finances of even fairly well-to-do children. Anyone seeking FIRE should factor in this risk. It is a good thing that you share about your father's situation on your blog so that others are more aware of this risk. Thank you.

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  22. Shyt,are u sure it's wise to plough 300k into a sinking ship?I mean investing is far safer world than whatever this is. this feels like a case of throwing money after bad money,if u viewed this as an investment,would it even be near the top of investable things?not to mention 350k is a huge commitment,ur not just dipping ur toes in ur literally throwing urself head in and saying that's it I'm committed.

    Feels like an emotional decision to me.

  23. My partner hehe asked how did your father business manage to pull off without going concern. Don't he has saving at all?

    1. Hi Cory

      It's actually not a bad business just needs help with the working capital needs on cash flow to tide over during this period that's all. Theres still a lot of value in turning around the business which we are concurrently are handling it.

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