Being in the industry for two decades now, Jodi Sta. Maria’s showbiz career has continued to flourish from being a promising teen star to becoming one of most versatile actresses and sought-after television personalities in the country at present.
However, more than the recognitions and praises she’s been reaping as an artist, what makes her absolutely more amazing is with how she impeccably takes on the most important role she has ever played in her life – being a mom, not to mention a single parent, to her dear unico hijo Thirdy.
And in the latest episode of StarStudio.ph’s #JustLikeYou campaign, she enthusiastically and sincerely opened up about the joys and struggles of becoming a mother, the things she continuously discovers about it and herself, how she takes pride in becoming a mom to her son, the lessons she has learned, and everything in between.
The 37-year-old actress-host started off by confessing how she used to assume that she’s already figured life out in her younger years, yet she eventually realized that it was her son who taught her the most important things she should learn in life.
"Akala ko na parang alam ko na halos lahat sa buhay. Pero na-realize ko na 'yong mga pinaka-importanteng bagay, anak ko pala 'yong magtuturo sa'kin no'n,” she said.
Just like most of us, parenthood is something that had never crossed her mind nor she dreamt of when she was still a child, even though we’re aware of the fact that we can get married or have our own family in the in the future.
"I had different dreams as a child. I wanted to become a flight attendant just like my mom. I also wanted to become a doctor. But i think, having a family and having children – these were the last things on my mind,” she imparted.
Jodi then went on to recount how she used to have a hard time and a lot of breakdown moments when she gave birth to Thirdy. She was only turning 24 then and admitted not completely prepared for it, that’s why she was grateful that her Mommy Ditas was by her side while she and her family were staying in the US. She also recalled the adjustments she had to do in order to attend to the needs of her newborn son.
But in spite of the difficulties she encountered, she was still elated and grateful for the arrival of her son a few days before Christmas, thus considering him as the “best Christmas gift” she has ever received in her entire life.
The time may had come that she has to take good care of her child alone after she and her former husband called it quits after five years of marriage, Jodi proudly divulged that she never had a headache with Thirdy even though there were times that he disobeyed her. According to her, he has always been so kind, helpful, cheerful, and a ball of sunshine not just to her, but with everyone around him. And the secret behind their unmistakably tight bond are none other than having constant communication and being open with one another, even now that he’s already 14 years old.
While parenting is undeniably a colossal responsibility, the lead star of the iWant original series “My Single Lady” said that it could be “fulfilling” at the same time.
"Parenting could be so fulfilling, but i guess it's the most challenging vocation or calling that you'd ever have kasi you don't get monetary reward for it,” she stated, then continued, “Ang nakukuha mo lang is 'yong pag-reciprocate doon sa love na binibigay mo sa anak mo. And for us parents, that is more than enough.”
Furthermore, she imparted how amazed she is of how motherhood and her son have taught her a plethora of things that are important for her to learn about life.
"The best thing about being a parent is being taught of the important things in life. I'm actually amazed because it was my son who taught me to become more understanding, more patient, more loving, become more selfless.
“Kumbaga feeling ko, kung ‘di ko siya naging anak, ang lagi ko lang iisipin is 'yong sarili ko. But it was him who taught me that I can actually be selfless pala. He also is teaching me to be more careful about the decisions that i make in life. It's because when you're a mother parang you don't only think of yourself. You also have to think twice -- isa para sa sarili mo, 'yong isa para sa ikabubuti ng anak mo,” she disclosed.
When asked about the message she could give to other moms like her, she simply said: “Enjoy motherhood. Enjoy your children while they're young, they will not be young forever.”
Then she added, “What you have is a gift. A child is always, you know, a blessing from the Lord. And what you're doing may not be easy, but for me, it's the noblest thing that one person could do. Just be strong. Saludo ako sa inyo kasi bihirang-bihira kang mkakahanap ng isang taong may backbone made of steel pero may heart na made of gold at ikaw 'yon.”
The hearty and insightful interview capped off with Jodi confidently stating, “Hi. I'm Jodi Sta. Maria and I'm still learning and discovering parenthood #JustLikeYou.”