In Tagalog (the Filipino language), the word for grandmother is Lola. However, as a child, my siblings and I couldn’t pronounce that. So, we called our grandmother “Wowa” instead. Thankfully, I can produce the “l” sound now, but the name “Wowa” has remained. It is a word that has a special place in my heart because the woman who is Wowa is truly incredible. This interview is an attempt to share her beautiful qualities with the world.
A role model & inspiration to many.
An excellent cook in Filipino cuisine.
My neighbor back at home that is two houses away 🙂
What is the best part of being a mother?
Oh wow. That is a nice question. You are able to share the values of your parents with your own children. Being able to nourish, take care, and see the children grow from infants to mature adults in their own way is the best.
The best part is that you are able to love, care, and discipline them as well, but you don’t feel primarily responsible in the upbringing because that is the role of their parents. I also really like that I am still able to earn their respect.
What is something simple that gives you great pleasure in life?
When everyone gets along. All is well then.
What was a typical family dinner that you had when you were a child?
Rice, soup, meat or fish, and vegetables…and bananas.
When and how did you meet Lolo (my grandfather)?
In college. I was reviewing for my board exam. He was ahead of me in school, but I was sitting by his friend and was then introduced.
What do you believe is the key to a successful marriage?
Oh yes. God has to play an important role. And love. Love between the two people.
What has been your favorite place to visit or travel to as an adult?
I love pilgrimages and different religious sites and beautiful sceneries. There are just so many places in and out of the United States. They are all nice. I had goose bumps when I went to Vatican City in Rome and the Church of Navity in Israel. Via Dolorosa (The Stations of the Cross) in Jerusalem was also incredible.
What personal accomplishments are you most proud of?
My career I think. I went from being a clerk to a supervisor to the head of the accounting department. I am also proud of raising many funds for my charities.
What is your earliest memory of me?
Ohhh. You were really beautiful, Ate (Tagalog for ‘older sister’). We loved your hair. And you know what…You didn’t like seatbelts. You would cry and cry and cry. I would unbuckle you and hold you in the car, and your dad would get so mad at me.
What did you and your siblings do for fun together?
We would go on picnics and on trips all around the states… King’s Island, L.A., and various amusement parks.
What was your first job?
I had an internship in the Department of Education in the Philippines, where I would file and help out with things.
What was your initial opinion of my dad when he started dating my mom?
I liked him. He seemed to be a gentleman and was polite, but most of all, I liked that he was Catholic.
What are your favorite things to do now?
My ministry, visitation of nursing homes, raising money for a good cause, and praying. I also like shopping.
How do you want to be remembered in this world?
Oh my… that I’m a good person and helped others and gave good moral values to my children and grandchildren. I want to be remembered as being a kind, fair, honest, and compassionate person.
Is there anything else that you want people to know about you?
Aside from being conservative, I want people to know that I have a sense of a humor too. I’m not serious all the time.
I love you Wowa. Forever and always.