Some people may think you’re still new in showbiz but this is actually your sixth year. How would you say has the industry been treating you so far?
There have been ups and downs, as with everything. I started out in February 2003 and I’d have to say I had an easy [entry] into the business, beginning with Click. Dire-diretso na until I had a soap opera with Oyo Boy [Sotto]. And then I was paired with JC De Vera as a love team—until I got pregnant nga. Yun yung medyo…ano ba ang tawag doon…basta ganun. The hard part was returning to the business, it’s like I didn’t know where to place myself. From teenybopper hindi ko alam kung saan ako pupunta—I was too young to be an adult, to be a teenybopper [and a] mom, parang ganon. Another thing was dealing with what people had to say. Some admired me dahil tinuloy ko yung pregnancy ko, that even at a young age I was willing to take the responsibility. But there were also some hurtful words, na kaya raw ako nabuntis nang maaga kasi malandi ako, when in fact na-in love lang talaga ako and I trusted the guy so much.
The good thing is that you never denied the fact. But had there been a time you considered that event a tragedy?
No, not really. Back then I was so in love with the father of my kid that when I learned I had become pregnant, I was actually happy. Parang ang feeling ko finally I could get married to him—I was that in love. But when that didn’t happen because I was too young, I still hoped it would. Until the baby came and I realized na wala nang pag-asa. That’s when I concentrated sa anak ko. I consider her my angel, so hindi ko na naisip na low point siya. Now I can say na happy ako with how everything has turned out kasi okay ang career ko.
Fast forward to 2009 and with Wowowee you are now a household name. Do you realize that things could have turned out for the worse with your showbiz career ending abruptly at 16?
No. Because when I was still with GMA they assured me that I could go back anytime after my pregnancy. Kaya malaki rin ang utang na loob ko sa GMA kasi they said that. Nagbida pa nga ako sa isang soap nun. Again, the hard part was having to deal with criticisms. I was also ready to accept na hanggang doon na lang ang career ko—until Wowowee came along.
So it’s safe to say you’ve not been traumatized at all.
Hindi. Sa awa ng Diyos hindi, ha ha ha! Never ko siyang nakita as a tragedy.
PHOTOGRAPHY: DOC MARLON PECJO
INTERVIEW: ALLAN P. HERNANDEZ
STYLIST: REY SANTOS
MAKEUP: KRIST BANSUELO
HAIR: BREN SALES
SPECIAL THANKS TO MS. BECKY AGUILA
READ VALERIE'S FULL INTERVIEW IN THE OCTOBER 2009 ISSUE OF FHM!