Motherhood

Close Encounters with First Lady Liza Marcos

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‘I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.’

~Maya Angelou

Note: This post may not sit well with some people. But this is a non-political post–just my personal experience with First Lady Liza Marcos.  

A Life in the Background

From elementary to college, I was with the school paper—comfortable with being read and not seen. In college and when I started working, I dabbled in production—a line of work where people should stay behind the camera and not be seen. We even wear black to camouflage ourselves with the darkness of the stage. And I am happy with that.

But in real life, it is sometimes good to be heard and seen because it affirms you as a person and also what you do. With that said, I do remember the people who made me feel seen in my life.

And this is exactly what First Lady Liza Marcos has done to me – she made me feel seen. Not just once, but twice.

Meeting the First Lady for the First Time

Through the years, we have worked closely with Megaworld Corporation as bloggers, writing about their real estate developments in Bacolod City.

Last year, when we were not yet safe from COVID-19, President Bong-Bong Marcos and the first family were in Bacolod City for the MassKara Festival. During that time, the whole family had different events to attend and a lot of them were held at The Upper East.

One event was the symbolic tree planting at The Upper East Rotunda in honor of the First Lady.

First Lady Liza Araneta-Marcos, First Lady Liza Marcos, First Lady of the Philippines, wife of President Bongbong Marcos, The Upper East, The Upper East Gallery, Megaworld Corporation, Bacolod City, mother, fellow mom, wife,
After the tree planting ceremony at The Upper East.
First Lady Liza Araneta-Marcos, First Lady Liza Marcos, First Lady of the Philippines, wife of President Bongbong Marcos, The Upper East, The Upper East Gallery, Megaworld Corporation, Bacolod City, mother, fellow mom, wife, Bacolod mommy blogger
At this point, she even asked her son Vinnie to join us in the picture. haha Kawawang bata!

Our call time was very early in anticipation of the morning event. The day before, we underwent a swab test because a negative result was required for anyone who would be in close contact with the Philippines’ first family.

After 3 hours outdoors, I was a sweaty mess under my sun hat. Despite knowing that everybody around me was negative for the coronavirus, I still wore a face mask.

The ceremony was a short but sweet one and when the First Lady was about to get on her car, I took the opportunity to take pictures of her up close. When she saw me, she went to me, took off my face mask, and had a selfie with me. Her smile was ever so infectious. In just 1 minute, the First Lady of the Philippines made me feel seen.

Lucky me, maybe the First Lady is a morning person and she was in a good mood that day.

The Second Time is No Longer Luck

Last October 2023, still in The Upper East and during the MassKara Festival, the First Lady was again in Bacolod City. She was the guest of honor in the unveiling of The Upper East Gallery but we were not able to take photos of the ceremony because of strict security. Instead, we just waited for the event to finish.

When she was on her way out, everybody scrambled to take photos of her from a distance as the PSG let us maintain a reasonable distance from the First Lady. But when she saw me, she waved, came over, and had a selfie with me…again!… while the rest of the group waited. My fellow blogger even asked jokingly, “Are you kumares? Close kayo?” hahaha

Watch This Video

@mommysigrid #Selfie with the First Lady. #fyp #foryoupage #FirstLady #Philippines ♬ original sound – MommySigrid

Why This is a Big Deal for Me

You might say, ang babaw ko. Does this story deserve a blog post?

For me, it’s a BIG YES!

First Lady Liza Araneta-Marcos, First Lady Liza Marcos, First Lady of the Philippines, wife of President Bongbong Marcos, The Upper East, The Upper East Gallery, Megaworld Corporation, Bacolod City, mother, fellow mom, wife,
First Lady Liza Araneta-Marcos, First Lady Liza Marcos, First Lady of the Philippines, wife of President Bongbong Marcos, The Upper East, The Upper East Gallery, Megaworld Corporation, Bacolod City, mother, fellow mom, wife, Bacolod mommy blogger
This time with veteran Bacolod journalist, Elsie Jolingan.

I have been treated like chopped liver by people who have a much lower status than her. Heck, she’s the First Lady of the Philippines, who by herself is an Araneta, one of the most prominent families in the Philippines., and yet, she can stop and say Hi!

Despite her wealth and now her stature, I found her to have a warm and fun personality. She doesn’t know me..at all. Nor was she concerned with how I looked or what I wore. She still approached me with warmth, giving me the mother hen or the friendly neighbor vibes.

The encounters I had with the First Lady were very brief, but in those moments, she made me feel “seen”. She didn’t have to, but she went out of her way to interact with me.

Indeed, queens lift each other’s crowns.

Thank you, Madam First Lady! And thank you, Megaworld Corporation, for these memorable encounters with her. You made that possible.

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