What does family mean to you?
Pia: Family doesn’t have to be your blood, I’ve had friends who I’ve known for five or six years who know me and support me more than my family back in the Philippines. I’m so different, if you see my family, none of them have tattoos, they’re all Catholic, so you can imagine. It means you can rely on that person and you can call them your family. Family is being there no matter who you are and what you do as long as you live.
What’s special about your family?
Pia: We always laugh through the bad times. Even when something happened we’d be like “oh well, at least we’re still alive. Let’s make some food.” We always take the good out of bad situations. That’s such an amazing thing to have.
Do you have any family traditions?
Pia: Looking after each other - that’s the Filipino tradition, it’s about community. No matter what happens we always have to help each other. Family is family.
What’s Leo like?
Pia: He’s really like me - I can see my personality in him. He’s very expressive about he feels, he’s a people person - just not when he’s tired!
What do you want to teach him?
Pia: To respect every single person and show equality. I’m so happy I had a boy because, from my personal experience, not a lot of men have that intuition of understanding women, especially mothers. I want to teach him how to always give respect and love.
What have you learnt from Leo?
Pia: I’d never been around children so had no idea how to change a nappy or anything like that. I had to learn everything on my own and I understood how my mum felt as a single parent. It’s opened my eyes, I see the world a lot differently.
What are your hopes for his future?
Pia: To be happy.
What have you learnt from your mum that you want to pass onto Leo?
Pia: Having patience, honestly. Being a single parent isn’t as easy as it sounds, but my mum has taught me so much that she was and still is my inspiration. I have two other brothers and sisters and she raised us all by herself and started from nothing. That’s what I’m doing now and want to pass on that strength to my son. To anyone who is a young single parent, being strong and getting your mental health together is so important.
What traits do you think you’ve got from her?
Pia: Her strength, patience definitely, her attitude. And being loving to people.
How would she describe you?
Pia: She’d say I was unexpected -I was always proving her wrong with my dreams and ambitions because sometimes I’d be lazy or unmotivated. She’d say I’m the person that does whatever they want as long as they’re happy and not hurting anyone around me.