‘She is our Wonder Woman, the one with the brave heart’ | Inquirer Lifestyle
During the lockdown I kept craving for kare-kare—the old-fashioned kare-kare made with tenderized ox tail and ox leg. I remember the kare-kare my…
Donnie Tantoco and mom Nena —Photos from Instagram

‘She is our Wonder Woman, the one with the brave heart’

JC Buendia on mom Dr. Corazon Buendia


She’ll be 80 soon but she voices her opinion on the Silent Majority group and still joins marches on Edsa. She binges on Netflix and Milky Way bars, yet she weighs no more than 90 pounds. She hears Mass every day and holds free clinic in church every Sunday.


I love her so much, I try to make her feel it’s Mother’s Day every day.


Randy Ortiz on mom Lourdes Ortiz


Mama will always be my ultimate icon, my greatest inspiration, my best friend, my No. 1 critic, my travel/shopping companion and my proudest ally. Her unconditional love for Papa and for us was beyond words. She was our greatest source of strength. Her calm and peaceful ways made her the best pacifist and teacher. Her sweet and gracious Ilongga charm will always be missed. How I wish Mama lived longer to be with us in our moments of defeat and triumph. Her memories and love will always be cherished for as long I live.


Henri Calayag on mom Remedios Torres Calayag


What I miss the most about my mom is her cooking. She made the best meals in the world. She made even the simplest dishes taste wonderful. She was from Pampanga. My mom’s specialties were pancit palabok and kaldereta. I miss her so much. I love my Nanay. I’m sure she’s still cooking feasts in heaven!


Donnie Tantoco on mom Nena Tantoco


Dearest Mama,


There are no words to explain how overwhelmingly lucky and blessed I feel to be your son. Words also (fall) short in expressing how intensely I love you and how greatly I admire you. I know there is no such thing as a perfect relationship. Call me deluded, but I cannot think of any significant imperfection of yours in the 51 years so far that I have been your son. The worst I can think of is that you were really, really strict—haha!


Mom, I thank you most of all for bringing me to Jesus. You are a very tough and demanding person, and in both your encouraging but also sometimes forceful way, you have made us hunger for and strive to be Christ-like not only in our personal, family and religious lives, but also in our work. You push us to be filled with the Holy Spirit, to know and follow the Bible where it is hardest to do, which is in business. You taught us that not being consistent across all parts of our life is being a hypocrite. You always make us choose the harder but more noble path to growth. It’s tough, Mom, but I will not stop striving no matter how many times I fail because you are relentless [in pushing us].


Mom, I thank you, too, for showing me what a warrior with a clean and fearless heart, and a steadfast spirit looks like. You are a fighter, Mom. You don’t judge others but you stand up for the truth, you stand up for what is right, you put your body in between the oppressor and the oppressed. You do this constantly and frequently in both big and small ways.


You are also one of the most creative persons I have ever met. I am so happy to have grown up in a world beautifully crafted and curated by you. The way you transform and uplift the ordinary is both awesome and exquisite, to say the least. You see, you create, you imagine with eyes and hands that are not of this world.


Thank you, Mom! I hope, like you, I can learn to fix my eyes on Jesus and not people and circumstances. I hope, like you, I can be joyful, fruitful, and constantly grateful especially during bad times. May you be that way always, Mom; may you continue to successfully ward off bitterness, resentment and long-term anger.


Mom, you are a great shepherd. Please never stop showing us what loving your neighbor looks like and is supposed to be.


(Donnie wrote this on his mom’s recent birthday.)

Donnie Tantoco and mom Nena —Photos from Instagram

Katrina Tantoco Lobregat on mom Nena Tantoco


You say often that you are our Momma Moon. Maybe this

explains why— “and if you are to love, love like the moon loves. It doesn’t steal the night, it only unveils the beauty of the dark.” This is one facet of you among many, many others written in the book of your life. We love you to the moon and back and back again.


(This was Katrina’s birthday message to her mom.)


Dr. Aivee Aguilar-Teo on mom Mayor Mel Aguilar


My mom is the most caring, thoughtful, generous, loving and selfless mother. She is also an amazing cook, constantly whipping up her special Filipino dishes for us. She is not only a mom to me but to most of my friends, staff and the people of Las Piñas. I am truly blessed to have a mom like her and I wish I could be even half as good as her.


Rhett Eala on mom Roceli Valencia Eala


My mom was young, 24, when she had me. She was very devoted to us, her three kids. She was our hero who gave us tough love with a tender embrace. She always said that if she messed up her kids’ upbringing, then she pretty much messed up in life. She passed this January with all her kids around her and her friends chanting Krishna’s name. Haribol Rohini Dasi and happy Mother’s Day.


Daphne Oseña-Paez on mom Rose Oseña


Every year on Mother’s Day, I post a tribute about my mom, Rose on Instagram. This year I posted a photo of her doing tai chi on a ship taken during her 2016 cruise in Halong Bay with my dad. The photo captures her spirit. She’s the only one in bright pink in a sea of dark neutrals. Her face is distorted but her natural beauty still radiates. She is exhibiting flexibility and enjoying her mobility and freedom to travel even in her 70s.


What I didn’t mention when I posted that, was that my mom was in the hospital just regaining her consciousness after having an emergency triple bypass heart surgery. Last week my mom had a heart attack and didn’t know she was having one. She didn’t feel any symptoms. She woke up with a backache thinking it was her arthritis. Her blood pressure was very high. My dad insisted on bringing her to the hospital. Within 24 hours she had an angiogram and was lined up for beating-heart surgery. My mother has had Type 2 diabetes for over 30 years. With some diabetics, they do not feel the typical symptoms of a heart attack (shortness of breath and tightness of the chest). She had a silent heart attack. It was a good thing my dad brought her to a medical facility right away.


This incident is a reminder of all that she preaches, and her unwavering faith in God. Five days after her surgery, my mom was sent home. She is walking and back to her daily routine—slower but gradually improving. She is our Wonder Woman, the one with the brave heart. On this Mother’s Day, I pray for my mom’s total restoration. And I practice what she always tells us—to count our blessings and be happy with the decisions and choices we make. I can’t wait to see her doing tai chi again soon.



Cristalle Henares Pitt on mom Dr. Vicki Belo


Now that I am nine weeks away from being a mother, I now have so much more appreciation for my mom.


My mom was pregnant with my brother Quark while she was in medical school and she had me while she was an intern in Makati Med. I can’t even imagine how hard that was to do—surviving medical school while experiencing all the changes that pregnancy does to your body. She also raised us while she was building her career as a dermatologist. My fondest memories include visiting her in the hospital and playing with the human skeleton.


My mom is definitely a super mom with extraordinary powers of achieving anything she sets her mind on. All I hope is that I could be half the woman she is.


I love you so much, Mommy, and I can’t wait for you to meet your grandson. I’m sure we’ll bond in so many more ways now that I, too, will be a mom.

Subscribe to Inquirer Lifestyle Newsletter