I Am Pretending That My Baby Is Adopted’
As told to ANA KRISTINE B. VALENZUELA
Published MOD May 2010
THE first time that Mirdianne* learned that she was pregnant, she cried-but they were not tears of joy.
At 28, Mirdianne was at that stage which many would consider the right age to have a baby. Also, she had a stable job working for the finance department of a retail company, so she could provide for her child.
But she and Lito, an officemate who worked for the logistics department, were not ready for parenthood. They were just having fun, they succumbed to their passions, but they were careful... or so they thought.
At first, Mirdianne noticed her menstruation skipping. But she didn’t bother about it because after all, she had an irregular pattern. But five months after, she still didn’t have that monthly visit. So she decided to have a home pregnancy test. The test turned out positive.
She didn’t know how to tell Lito. Things were complicated. They weren’t formally a couple. People in the office didn’t even know that they were going out.
Nevertheless, abortion did not cross her mind. Yet, she did not know what to do. So, she searched the Internet for answers. She found emotional support. The first person she told about her pregnancy was a pro-life minister, whom she met online.
Later on, she found the courage to tell her mother and sister, who were both in the province. She went home and told them, but they decided to keep it first from the rest of the family, including her father. Their plan: she would live in a home for women in crisis until she gives birth. Then she will legally adopt her own baby. She will tell people that the baby belongs to a less fortunate woman and that she’s adopting the baby out of charity.
Today, Mirdianne is one of the women housed at Grace To Be Born. She found a refuge in this non-government organization which helps women in crisis, especially giving shelter to pregnant women who do not want to resort to abortion. At Grace To Be Born, she is learning how to take care of babies by looking after babies of other women in the home.
Now she has accepted her baby-a boy-wholeheartedly and plans to name him Samuel, a character from the Bible who was adopted by a priest.
Things are still complicated with Lito, though. He still sends her text messages, but he doesn’t give any financial or emotional support, which Mirdianne is not hoping for anymore.
Mirdianne is on maternity leave, even as her officemates still do not know who the father of her child is. She has to work to be able to provide for her baby, but she plans to look for a job in another company.
“I will raise him up as my adopted child,” Mirdianne says of the baby she will deliver anytime soon. “But when the time comes that he can already understand, I will tell him the truth.”
Note: *Although events in the story are true, names of places, persons, and some circumstances have been altered to protect the identity of those involved. Any similarity to actual names of places and persons, whether living or deceased, is purely coincidental.
Sunday, December 12, 2010
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
SHE may seem like your typical demure girl, always smiling, answering questions—even controversial ones--in a gentle tone, but Sarah Geronimo has no qualms singing for an audience or acting out a scene in front of the camera.
“I’m not shy when I’m on stage–singing and dancing. That’s the time when I’m the most confident. That’s when I lose my inhibitions. I can do anything up on stage,” Sarah says.
Maybe that is why even at the start of her career, Sarah had already earned praises from big-named stars, seeing the potential in her at an early age.
Maricel Soriano her costar in her first film project, Filipinas, commented during the film’s promo tour, “That girl will go far. She’s only 14, right? For someone like Sarah na first time mag-pelikula, mahusay siya. Bibilib ka sa kanya. Maaaring ang ibang tao may iba pang expectations sa kanya, but for me, okay na okay siya.”
During Sarah’s 2005 solo concert, The Other Side, at the Araneta Colisuem, Regine Velasquez, Sarah’s idol, already crowned her not just as the pop princess but as the country’s pop queen, as she was able to match the Asia’s songbird’s belting power during their rendition of Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston songs. “Madaming tao ang nagmamahal sa 'yo at isa na ako duon na laging maasahan mo sa suporta," said Regine.
Indeed, Sarah has proven herself well to her peers as much as to her fans. To all this success, she credits her family.
Like with learning To Love You More, her winning piece in the Star for a Night singing search and which eventually became her signature hit. After an unfortunate incident, Sarah never wanted to belt out this piece. It was her father, Delfin, who pushed her to persevere on learning the tune. With enough determination, she sang the Celine Dion original and won the top prize in the contest.
Now, she continues to grow more as an artist, as she molds her acting prowess, working with actors who she knows she can learn from. She tells ABS-CBN.com, “As an individual na artist mas nakakapag-experiment ako to explore sa career and hindi ka nasa-stuck at hindi ka nakukulong sa isang kahon. Maganda na ganito. ”
In her latest prime time starrer, Idol, she is paired with Sam Milby and Coco Martin. The team-up seems to be growing on Sarah as she comments to ABS-CBN.com, “Pareho nga akong kinikilig sa kanila. Kapag ka-eksena ko si Sam may kilig, kay Coco iba din ‘yung kilig.”
She talks more fondly about her leading men to ABS-CBN.com. “Nakakusap ko na rin si Sam magkaibigan na rin kami. Alam ko kung gaano siya kabuting tao. Thankful ako na nagkaroon kami ng ganitong chance na magkatrabaho dito sa isang napakagandang proyekto. Masaya rin po katrabaho si Coco at minsan nga ang tawag ko sa kanya Direk Co kasi napaka-professional. Para siyang direktor."
With her versatility, noteworthy performances, platinum albums, sold-out concerts, and box-office movies to her name, Sarah reminds us that she is indeed a certified Idol.
Hair Care. “Siyempre bilang performer, napaka-importante how my hair looks. But with my hectic schedule hindi ako makapunta ng salon or makapagpa-treatment kaya I really need the best hair products available. With Sunsilk, my hair is softer and you can really see the difference from before Sabi ni Yuko (Yamashita, hair expert) i-avoid ko daw ang too much friction, like sobrang towel drying or even aggressive brushing, para laging smooth and straight ang hair ko.”
Money Management. “Ang laking tulong po ng Cebuana Lhuillier sa buhay ng pamilya ko noon. Nagsasangla si mommy before to tend to our expenses. Ngayon naman nandito ako para magbigay inspirasyon din sa ibang tao.”
Saturday, October 30, 2010
Sexual Harassment: The Horror, the Horror
By ANA KRISTINE B. VALENZUELA
Published MOD October 2010 Halloween Issue
IT might happen in school, in the office, or even at your home.
“Sexual harassment is any behaviour or verbal expression that one find offensive,” according to Dr. Genuina Ranoy of St. Luke’s Medical Center. “It depends on the perception of the person. For some people, it is not sexual harassment because okay lang na ginagawa yun.”
Check the Signs
Behavioural. There are times that it might seem obvious, like one’s stare might make you feel uncomfortable or has the interpretation of sexual advances. Or one creates a situation wherein you would be uncomfortable. Sometimes the victim cannot say anything because the harasser’s position is higher.
Verbal. “One example is being called in some terms of endearment, or maybe in a way that has a sexual connotation and inappropriate for you. It would only be sexual harassment if you do not like it,” says Dr. Ranoy.
Actions. “If a guy touches your private parts and he says it’s accidental but for you its not, that’s sexual harassment,” says Dr. Ranoy.
How To Cope with Harassment:
Say it. Dr. Ranoy says that you really have to say what you feel, like “’You’re going beyond boundaries,” so that the person would know. Tell him, because some people are not even aware that they are harassing other people. “
File a complaint. “Tell the authorities,” advises Dr. Ranoy. “That way, they would look into what you are saying and have the proper venues to discuss it.”
Don’t feel guilty. “People often say that it is the victim’s fault, especially if she dresses in a sexy way. ‘It is their fault as they are inviting,’ harassers would often say,” says Dr. Ranoy. “No, it’s not your fault. Don’t feel guilty about it. You did not like what was done to you.”Check yourself. “Check the way you behave. Certain verbal expressions may be seducing. Maybe unconsciously you are being seductive,” says Dr. Ranoy. “Especially if there is a pattern that wherever you go you are being sexually harassed, ask yourself why. It is not necessarily the way you dress up, but the behaviour also. People might think that to you it is okay because you are inviting.”
‘Anything Is possible’
By ANA KRISTINE B. VALENZUELA
MOD OCtober 2010
WITH three regular shows on GMA-7—Illumina, Kaya ng Powers, and Party Pilipinas— it is amazing that Rhian Ramos manages to make time for herself and her friends.
She says she gets organized and manages her time with the help of her HTC Smart phone which acts as a social calendar and mini computer all in one device. “It really is different when they make the phone easy to use. Who cares about a phone if you can’t do anything with it? I’m not the most technologically savvy person, but I can do much with it,” Rhian says of her phone.
Carry-all. I’m a music lover, I like a phone that can carry music so hindi ako ‘yung type ng tao na maraming gadgets all at once. I don’t carry a bag, so I want everything in my phone. It is a camera, a music player, and a handy computer that I bring about just anywhere. My whole life is practically stored in here--my entire social life, work life, my schedule. I just pocket it with me and bring it anywhere. I cannot live home without my phone. One time umabot na ako ng Quezon City, and I live in Alabang, pinabalik ko talaga ‘yung kotse kasi buhay ko nga ito.
Accidents happen. I was on my way to a taping in Subic. I got lost. Then a car bumped the rear of my car. Thankfully, I was not hurt. That was it. The insurance will take care of it.
Aljur to the rescue. Aljur Abrenica always comes to my rescue when I am hungry. I need not say anything -- somehow he knows I am craving for something and he sends his driver with the food I am craving for. One time I bought four pieces of yema candies for myself. Aljur found out I like such candies so one time, when we were taping in Pampanga, he bought me a bag of yemas.
Anything is possible. Is there a possibility of anything romantic happening between Aljur and me? Anything is possible. But as much as possible, I focus more on my work. Hindi naman kami pumupunta ng taping para magligawan. But anything is possible. We do not know what might happen in the future. I don’t know if there will be anything with us. I’m not saying that there is, but I’m not saying that it is impossible.
It can happen to anybody. I just heard about what happened to Sarah Geronimo's dad -- you know, when a guy attempted to con him. It can happen to anybody. It's scary. I don't have bodyguards. when I need to get something from my car, I go get it myself. My mom often worries about me. Like I thought nothing of my recent car accident. But my mom, she was worried sick.
No gap. There were rumors that Marian Rivera and I have some gap. I don't think so. I haven't seen her since I guested on her show (Show Me Da Manny). Even when Dong (Dingdong Dantes) and I worked together (for Stairway to Heaven), Marian and I didn't see each other. She once said she was not jealous about Dong and I working together. So there--we didn’t have any gap.
Saturday, October 23, 2010
Thursday, October 21, 2010
By ANA KRISTINE B. VALENZUELA
Saturday, October 09, 2010
Thursday, October 07, 2010
But that was then, back when i was still in Grade five. Now, the hundred books that I have collected through the years are now unread and collecting dust on the corner of my room. I was in need of money and my mother was again and again complaining about the stuff in my room. So it came to me that I needed to unload and maybe sell some of my things.
I wasn't sure of how to buy nor sell online but I have heard of sulit.com.ph from friends who have worked in Sales. They say that it a great retail machinery, a quick way to sell things and buy things at an affordable price. So having been a member after this good recommendation, I decided to give sulit a try and sell some of my most valued books.
As I have said before, I am a newbie in the virtual retail industry. I merely followed the pattern that sellers did as I posted my own ad for my books. Some sellers opt to ship while some some would prefer to meet with their buyers, so being located in the heart of the city, i decided to just trust my instincts and place my number for a possible meetup.
I guess trust---in sulit.com.ph---place a crucial role in my first sell. As a new seller, i didn't know what i would encounter, i haven't even bought anything online. Still trusting sulit.com.ph, that they know their users well and it wouldn't place me any harm, made me post my number thus making me profit.
I sold my sweet Valley books to two different buyers from sulit.com.ph. I know that this girls would be flipping through the pages that i once enjoyed.
Thursday, September 09, 2010
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Saturday, September 04, 2010
By ANA KRISTINE B. VALENZUELA
MOD August 2010
“MORE and more families think out of the box, or in a non-traditional way. It is acceptable that roles can be interchanged because of the realities of financial woes,” says Dr. Edgardo Juan Tolentino, head of the psychiatry department at the
Today’s mothers seem to be top executives. More and more women are becoming breadwinners of their household, while the husbands play the role of caregivers to their children. “In the
Society views may have changed, but how does that affect your relationship with your man when you earn more money than him? “Always look at the value of what the other person contributes,” Dr. Tolentino advises. “To put it at a smarter perspective, money is important, but look at what both spouses contribute. Even though he (the husband) doesn’t give in as much money, he also shares something else.”
Factors that may have brought upon this type of relationship:
1. Changes in social standard. “There is a change in tradition,” says Dr. Tolentino. “We are now open to a different perspective as we are highly influenced by the Internet. We are able to see other models of relationships, not just the traditional.” We see marriages such as that of Julia Roberts and cameraman Danny Moder which makes us open to a type of relationship where the woman earns more.
2. Personality. “If the man is highly secure with himself and he sees the need to earn, his self esteem is not related to his earnings,” he says.
3. Migration. “The women have greater opportunities to work in other countries as nurses, or domestic helpers. That’s another factor why they have greater earning capacity than the males,” he says.
4. Intermarriages. According to Dr. Tolentino, the Spanish and American colonization and Chinese culture greatly influenced our own. Filipinos have a lot of models of different relationships to choose from.
Advantages of wives as breadwinners
1. Acceptance of switch of roles. “Roles can be interchanged. The man, as long as he is secure with himself, can be highly important even though he is not working. He can take the househusband role, managing the household chores, helping the children with their homework and driving them to school,” explains Dr. Tolentino.
2. Allows for a greater breath of expressing roles. “There is not much pressure as long as both of you and your man are secure that each one is fulfilling an important role,” Dr. Tolentino says. “If you stick to the traditional roles, the doors for cash opportunities might close.”
3. Balance of power. “In any relationship, you will always expect a power balance. Society has put too much value on who holds the purse or who holds the power. But power is something to be shared,” he says. “Even though the man is working, it is expected that he gives the money to the woman. So when there is a reversal of roles, she also gets to budget. It’s not untraditional. It is always the woman who budgets and decides on how to spend it. But today, there are some models, in which the woman shares with the househusband the budgeting. She has the option to modify the expenditures.”
Disadvantages of wives as breadwinners
1. External pressure. “This could be because of the cultural and traditional values of the family,” he says. The man may feel powerless because he is earning less.
2. Internal Pressure “If there are personality problems, like the man is insecure or the woman is domineering, the wife may ask questions like, ‘Why am I the one working? Why am I the one bringing home the bacon?’” he explains.
What’s your daily diet like?
I have to have a cheat day, where in I eat whatever I want. Before, I chow down on a lot of junk food, but now, I don’t eat as much anymore. I stopped eating junk food this year.
Do you have a sports regimen?
I do biking and belly dancing.
How about your exercise regimen?
I jog. I work out. There’s a video called Insanity. You should watch it. The workout is super intense. It is not that new, but it is slowly gaining a following.
How do you budget your money?
I have an accountant who helps me with my budget. I don’t spend that much. I only treat myself with food actually and, oh yeah, shoes. If I don’t need something then I won’t buy it. I keep my payments in the bank and withdraw cash only if needed.
What is one thing that you are saving for?
I already have a house, so I’d like to have more investments.
I am rich in family and friends. I consider myself blessed for having that kind of family who supports me. At the same time, they don’t tolerate the bad things that I do. They treat you as a normal person and not as a celebrity