Baguio City

[Mother’s Day] Unwavering Faith

Ira Agting
She's a full-time executive who has two kids

GIGIL WITH MOMMY. We had to remind little Joseph that we were shooting, just so he would stop playing with his mom affectionately. But then again, we decided to stop reminding him and captured these moments. Photo by Shaira Luna

"JOSEPH, WE'RE SHOOTING." The toddler attempts a pose perfect for the cover of a parenting magazine. Photo by Shaira Luna

THERE HE GOES AGAIN. But Joseph just couldn't help but be gigil with mommy yet again. Older sister Beatrice was relaxed and enjoying the moment. Photo by Shaira Luna

MANILA, Philippines – They say absence makes the heart grow fonder.

But for mothers, distance evokes emotions far deeper than what a simple “I miss you” can say.

Faith Aranton, Avon executive and a doting mother to Beatrice (16) and Joseph (4) is an example of a travelling working mom, being part of one of the biggest multi-national companies.

Is she stressed? Is she having a hard time? Looking at Faith, it’s hard to say.

“I am not a jetsetter,” she with a laugh when asked about her frequent visits abroad. “I only travel every so often — twice a year or once every quarter — on business trips like product launches,” she explains.

Although she admits having disdain about riding planes, Faith admits, however, that travelling is an enriching experience for her — “getting to a different place, getting to know a different culture, seeing new places, tasting culinary delights” are things she looks forward to when globetrotting.

But her favorite and most anticipated part of the trips?

Going back home to be with her kids.

“(Travelling) has its delights the first few days. After that, they wear off and you want to go home,” Faith says.

“Wish you were here.”

What, then, does she do to shorten the distance while it still isn’t time to go home?

“The phone companies earn a lot off of me,” she says. “I make it a point to call Beatrice and Joseph everyday.”

Faith shares an instance when she and Beatrice were able to chat online in Facebook. Communication is crucial for a family like hers (especially since she is a single parent) and they are starting to explore the benefits of technology when it comes to staying in touch.

Saying goodbye — even for just a while — is never easy; but Faith has found ways to make it less stressful on her children.

She makes sure to explain beforehand why her absence is called for, especially to her son, who — because of his tender age — tends to be less tolerant of her going away.

“I tell Joseph ‘Mom has to go on a plane’ and he knows that I’ll be away for a long period of time,” she says.

When abroad, Faith is confident that someone is present to take good care of her children — their ever trusty Yayay (nanny) who has been with the family since Faith was a young girl.

“I’m so blessed (with her),” says Faith. “With her around, I can go to work and to different places without worry. She’s like their second mother.”

YOU CAN'T TELL THAT Faith spends long periods of time away from her kids for her work. Both Beatrice and Joseph are warm, polite and extremely lovable. Photo by Shaira Luna

Keeping the faith

Pure excitement, happiness and innocent love are what welcome Faith each time she gets back; luggage and, of course, pasalubong (coming-home gifts) in hand.  

She recalls a time when Beatrice refused to let her go on a trip during her school semestral break. What loosened Beatrice up, however, was the possibility of her mother meeting Twilight star, Ashley Greene, in one of the events.

True enough, her mom brought home a picture with the actress.

But more than the bags of pasalubong, time together is what takes the cake. When she’s not abroad, Faith prioritizes weekends with the family. Simple activities like walks around the UP oval, food trips in the campus grounds or even plain visits to the dentist are all cherished moments for the family.

The bunch also enjoys travelling together, like going on long weekends to the beach. In fact, they are looking forward to their first out of the country trip together soon. 

Woman power

Aside from being a role model to her kids, Faith also does her part in empowering other women. Through Avon’s “Say Goodbye to Breast Cancer” and “Speak Out Against Domestic Violence” campaigns, women around the country are given the power to assert and protect themselves.

“We are committed to causes that are important to women,” Faith firmly declares.

“Speak Out Against Domestic Violence” is all about raising awareness and urging women to let their voices be heard. The goal of the campaign is to show the world that no woman deserves to be harmed by their partners, and that domestic violence is not something to be ashamed of. It is important to note that domestic violence can start from as early as the dating or “boyfriend-girlfriend” stage, a fact that most women are unaware of or choose to ignore, hoping that eventual marriage or children will “change” their abusive partner.

ARRIVED SMILING, LEFT LAUGHING. The happy family left for Faith's recording (for her job) after our shoot. Still happily together. Photo by Shaira Luna

Strong woman and mom Faith, fresh from being squeezed with love by Joseph at our shoot, ends our interview with a message to all women: “At this day and age, women have every right to be heard. All women — mothers, daughters and sisters alike — need to fight oppression together.” –

(Photography by Shaira Luna. Styling by Paige Occenola. Makeup by Mica Tuano. Hair by Eddie Mar Cabiltes. Necklaces by SM Department Store. Shot on location at Edsa Shangri-La Hotel.The blogs have started coming in and we encourage you to keep sending them: Father’s Day is almost here! Send us your stories and photos with subject heading WORLD’S BEST DAD to Join us on June 17, Sunday, 3PM, for a live Tweet convo @rapplerdotcom #loveyoudad.)

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