“She’s the best mom,” says Fiona, Valerie Concepcion’s daughter when asked how Valerie is looking after her. Coming from her own nine-year old girl, any mother’s heart would melt in seconds. The look on Valerie’s eyes as her daughter uttered those words showed how much she loved her own princess.
Valerie got pregnant at the age of 16; she was a bit on the wild side back then as she was starting to make a name for herself in the entertainment business. Yet, unlike others, Valerie never felt scared nor regretted having a kid as a teen mom. Instead, took on the challenge,emboldened by the most challenging role of her life: being a mom!
“I can’t remember the time when I didn’t have a kid,” admitted Valerie. From the day she accepted her newfound role, she felt like it was meant to be.
Before Fiona, Valerie simply worked for herself and no one else. She joined show business because she enjoyed it but looking back at her early career, she saw herself doing projects without really having a meaningful purpose.
However, everything changed when Fiona was born.
All efforts had its purpose; to provide a better life for her daughter. And though she was still very young, she worked extra hard to give her daughter a good life.
“Nagkaroon ako ng direction, in the sense na nag-iistrive hard ka not just for myself anymore but for her too (I suddenly had a direction, in the sense that I strive hard not just for myself anymore, but for her too), Valerie revealed.
Truthfully, Valerie did strive harder. Everything else in her life took a backseat because her daughter meant more. Fiona’s future and a promise of a good life for her princess came first.
And though working took up most of her time, she made sure she was a hands-on mom whenever she could.
“Whenever I don’t have work, talagang sakin siya natutulog (Whenever I don’t have work, I see to it that she sleeps with me),” said Valerie. She remembered the time when Fiona was still a baby; she enjoyed it when her little girl sleeps on her chest because she “always wanted her close to her heart.”
Becoming a mom also made Valerie wise with her earnings, in fact, aside from her career in show business, she is also an entrepreneur. She invested in a franchise of Posh Nails which she set up in Mckinley Hill, Taguig City, where her business partner is none other than her mom.
At the time when Fiona was already growing up, she knew she needed to invest so that she could ensure the kid's future. At first, she wanted to put up a restaurant for her grandmother who was a great cook. Yet, when Val's grandma passed on, she decided to engage in something she understood better, enjoyed and trusted to be as worthwhile as her first idea. And since she and her mom were satisfied clients of Posh Nails, Valerie knew this was the perfect venture for her.
BECOMING MORE...BECOMING BETTER
However, becoming financially secure was just one of Valerie’s lofty goals. For her personal life, she wanted to be a better person for her daughter. Fortunately, another blessing came into her life when she was offered a scholarship to finish any degree she wanted. Since Valerie became a mom at a young age, her education was put on the side. But when she saw her daughter growing, she wanted Fiona to be proud of her too.
Now Val is in her first year as a marketing major, and the adjustment was trying at the start. For one, she had never set foot in a school for almostf 10 years, because she had become pregnant and quit schooling. The only school she went to was the kindergarten and primary school she enrolled her daughter in. Adjusting her work schedule also became difficult, almost pushing her not to enroll for the second semester.
However, she insisted to continue with schooling because she wanted to be a good role model to all the other single moms. And secondly, she wanted Fiona to be proud of her when she finished. Lastly, Val is in a serious relationship right now, and she also wants to be a better person for her beau too.
Though she is currently inspired by romance, she will always be motivated first by Fiona. And all her efforts remained directed towards her one goal.
Looking back, Valerie has come a long way. She has raised a daughter almost perfectly as a single mom going it alone, and the experience has also gained her happiness and wisdom.
“Hanggang ngayon, di ako makapaniwala na may grade 5 na ako (until now, I still cannot believe that I already have a 5th grader),” Valerie admitted. “Being a single mom, I can’t believe na nakayanan ko siya i-raise mag-isa (Being a single mom. I can’t believe I raised her on my own).”
Although, being on her own doesn’t literally mean she is alone in her journey. “I’m just really grateful kay Lord kasi hindi ko naman makakaya kundi dahil kay Lord, and of course, with all the support of my family too (I’m just really grateful to the Lord because I won’t really be able to make it without Him, and of course, with all the support of my family too).”
And today, as her daughter starts to become a young lady, Valerie could never be prouder. Looking back, she knew being a mother was something she was prepared for. “I was ready for it, from the moment na pinanganak ko siya, it [motherhood] came out naturally na parang ito ang meant ko: to be a mother (I was ready for it, from the moment I gave birth, motherhood came out naturally like I was meant to become a mother).”
As a mother, Valerie found it rewarding with the little things that her daughter does, like writing her letters. These little nothings reaffirm Valerie that she did a great job in raising her. Who could have thought and imagined that the young Valerie Concepcion, fan fave celebrity idol then would turn out to be ‘the best mom ever.’ When the love of a mother kicks in, every young woman up for the challenge will surely make good as Val bears witness to the Lord's grace, whom He chooses can always make good.