MANILA, Philippines - For years, she has dominated the local and international music scene as Asia’s Songbird. Now that she has married the love of her life, Regine Velasquez is ready to sing totally new songs, even one about settling down.
Fortunately for her numerous fans, this does not at all mean that she would quit her flourishing career; she just feels it is time to explore the other sides of her that nobody has seen: A housewife, a homemaker and, hopefully soon, a mother.
“I started my career when I was 16,” she recalls. “I have been working for 25 years so I feel that now is my time to settle down. Nagawa ko na lahat for my family so ako naman ngayon.”
The last statement couldn’t be truer. Although Regine considers herself independent and tough, underneath is a conservative and religious individual who deeply values her family upbringing as the groundwork for her success. That’s why she reciprocates her blessings in every way she can.
Simply yet smartly, that’s how Regine sums up her childhood upbringing. Her father helped her train her voice by having her sing while neck-deep in the waters off Southern Leyte where she grew up. Her mother also helped her by teaching her how to move on stage and interpret songs; and she nurtured Regine’s budding talents in other ways as well.
“Even though we were not well off, marunong dumiskarte ang nanay ko,” she says. “She made sure she gave us nutritious food and plenty of milk to drink. Laging may gulay at gatas akong iniinom kaya hindi ako sakitin.”
This habit has stayed with Regine all these years. That’s why she gives her support to the Laki Sa Gatas Nutrition Education Advocacy, which promotes among kids and their parents the importance of proper nutrition along with good education to turn their lives for the better and help them attain their ambitions.
The campaign — one of many being endorsed by the philanthropically inclined celebrity — reaches out to public school students and their moms all over the country, sharing the need to take on nutritious and affordable habits like drinking milk regularly, among others.
“Alam ko kung gaano kahirap ang magbigay ng masustansyang pagkain kung ikaw ay mahirap pero dapat marunong at mapamaraan ang mga parents,” Regine says. “I believe in Laki Sa Gatas since it teaches parents how to provide their kids proper nutrition.”
Her support for Laki Sa Gatas may also be prelude to when she becomes a parent herself. “All the lessons I learned from my parents I will apply to my own children one day,” she says. “Papalakihin ko sila katulad ng pagpapalaki sa akin, laging tumatayo pagkatapos ng problema, always positive and valuing hard work. Napakalaki ng influence ng family, at importante ang pagmamahal sa pamilya.”
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