My Dad told me

CONVERSATIONS - Ricky Lo - The Philippine Star
My Dad told me
Lovi Poe and dad Fernando Poe Jr
STAR / File

The “lusty” month of May segues into the “marry” month of June (starting last Monday). But did you know why June is considered a “special” month by brides?

Research reveals this information: Thousands of years ago, the Ancient Romans named the month after the goddess Juno (wife of Jupiter) who was the patron of marriage and also responsible for looking after the well-being of women. The name Juno comes from the Latin word “juvens” which means “young people.” June is described as “a beautiful month” and it is said that the longest day of the year occurs on either the 21st or 22nd of the month.

But wait. June is not exclusively the month of brides. It is also for fathers who are honored with a special Father’s Day on June 21 (third Sunday of the month). In an advance tribute to fathers, Conversations asked eight celebrities to reveal the best lessons they have learned from their dads.

Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte.

Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte (Dad: Former Q.C. Mayor/former House Speaker Feliciano “Sonny” Belmonte Jr.): Block out all the noise and keep your eyes on the goal.

Sonny Belmonte: Block out the noise
Sen. Bong Revilla and dad Ramon Revilla Sr.: Discipline and word of honor

Sen. Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr. (Dad: Former Sen. Ramon Revilla Sr.): Two things, palabra de honor (word of honor) and discipline.

They come hand in hand. My dad instilled in us the value of discipline and at the same time raised us on the philosophy that a man is only as good as his word.

Ang salita hindi dapat binabawi at lagi dapat pinaninindigan. Words resonate through time and can be a source of strength, inspiration and joy. It is also indicative of commitment, motivation and dedication.

But words may also inflict deep wounds and foster ill-will and misunderstanding, kaya kailangan maging maingat sa bawat salita.

Where discipline is concerned, only your mind limits what you can achieve, and with proper discipline, you can achieve everything you set your mind on. Basta sa buong proseso, dapat laging nasa tama.

These are the greatest life lessons my Dad has imparted, and hopefully, what I also impart to my kids.

Martin Nievera and dad Bert Nievera (then giving little Martin a kind cut): Look into the light

Martin Nievera (Dad: The late Bert Nievera): Dad always told me, especially when I was onstage performing, “If you are scared and unsure, always look into the light. That way, your audience can see your eyes and you can communicate the true meaning of every song.”

Long story short...even in life when darkness fills your hopes and you are unsure what tomorrow holds, look into the light...My dad also used to say, especially when he was unsure of the outcome of his answers to my questions, “Ask Mom.”

In vintage photo: The value of hard work

Lovi Poe (Dad: The late Da King, Fernando Poe Jr.): My dad taught me the value of hard work. He set an example to so many of us that the journey of his career had been truly inspiring. He also taught me the value of struggle. I take pride in the fact that because of him I strove to stand on my own two feet.

Juliana Gomez and dad Richard Gomez.

Juliana Gomez (Dad: Ormoc City Mayor Richard Gomez): My dad once told me to never stop working hard and I’ve carried that advice with me ever since. He said that excellence should be the standard, that I should give my best to whatever I choose to do. I am thankful to my dad every day.

Juliana Gomez and dad Richard Gomez then and now: Never stop working hard
Photos courtesy of the respondents
Luis ‘Lucky’ Manzano and dad Edu Manzano: Respect for people in all ‘positions

Luis “Lucky” Manzano (Dad: Edu Manzano): It’s a lesson that I observe all the time. My dad doesn’t believe in “positions” or “social standings.” How he respects the boss is exactly the same way he respects even the simplest of positions.

Janno Gibbs and dad Ronaldo Valdez then and now: Respect for the children

Janno Gibbs (Dad: Ronaldo Valdez): As a father myself now, I have learned a lot of things from Papa that I apply to my own children. One that stands out is respect for children, giving them the opportunity to speak their minds.

I remember the time he gave me a good scolding. Minutes later, he came to my room and apologized. But the simplest thing I learned from him was how to just be genuinely kind, and that’s not easy to teach. You can only teach it by example.

Kim Atienza and dad Lito Atienza: Love for work and family

Kim Atienza (Dad: Former Manila Mayor/incumbent Buhay Party-List Rep. Lito Atienza): Dad taught me the value of appreciating the grind of hard work. Dad never stops working. I used to resent the way he pressured me to work, work, work. The hard part pa was for 12 years in politics he was my direct boss so he was always on my case. Looking back, I appreciate all this because it taught me perseverance and character, two traits that I am able to use in many aspects of life.

I also learned to love my wife Feli the way Dad loves my mom (Beng Atienza). My mom is like my dad’s Siamese twin. You will never see them apart. Dad is a totally devoted husband, willing to give his life for wife and family. I have become that way to Feli and our kids as well.

(E-mail reactions at [email protected]. For more updates, photos and videos, visit www.philstar.com/funfare or follow me on Instagram @therealrickylo.)

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