Passionista: Patty Balquiedra

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http://www.flickr.com/photos/hypermom/13276936433/ A breast cancer survivor, mom of two, devoted partner, and ex-corporate slave turned mompreneur, that’s Patty Balquiedra, an awefully inspiring woman who graces our site as part of Electrolux’s Wear Your Passion campaign. Mommy Mundo’s Janice Villanueva gets up close and personal with the woman who has met all the challenges that have come her way with much grace and gusto.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/hypermom/13276936803/

It was Patty’s own experience facing the biggest health challenge anyone can ask for, the big C, that led her to be an advocate for others going through the same experience as she did. We can always say that it is inevitable that victims become automatic advocates but only those with a loving and generous spirit and genuine concern for others would go as far as Patty does. She blogs. She helps organize awareness campaigns and events. And she reaches out to others: the newly diagnosed and those undergoing treatment. Personally, I have learned so much from her in the one year that I have known her—and the lessons I've learned are not only about cancer, it is that smile and bright-eyed courage and attitude that I draw inspiration from. So really, Patty inspires just by being her passionate self. And that is magical.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/hypermom/13276937013/

After your bout with breast cancer, was it natural for you to go full on into the work of advocating cancer awareness? How did you realize this passion and what steps did you take to pursue it?

It didn't take a lot for me to realize that I had to do my share to speak about my diagnosis and how I dealt with it. There's a lesson to be learned from my story and even though it was embarrassing at first, I thought of how many can benefit from knowing and being more informed. I started a new blog that focused on the journey alone and when people would ask me for interviews, I granted them. I jumped at every opportunity to share.

Besides your blog, what activities have you done for your passion?

I was invited to take part in a social media campaign by Physiogel along with other breast cancer survivors. I was also in the GE Philippines Breast Cancer Awareness activity and shared the stage with the Assistant Secretary of DOH and other experts to answer questions on breast cancer. I was recently a guest on DZIQ Radyo Inquirer and have been featured in columns in Philippine Star, Philippine Daily Inquirer, and Manila Bulletin.

What do you think are the benefits of sharing your passion, of self expression, and extending yourself in relation to it to your followers and community? Other than the benefits of cancer awareness in people, which is your goal, what are the benefits also to yourself?

Sharing my passion on breast cancer awareness means educating others. The more people know, the more empowered they become. Empowerment then leads to action and action will hopefully change the current growing number of breast cancer patients in the country. To myself, the main benefit is knowing that I constantly do my part to inform and maybe save lives as a result.

What is the role of fashion in your life?

Fashion is a form of self-expression. Whatever the reason may be, we can usually tell a lot about a person from the way she carries herself. There are women who dress so differently from others because to them, it's a way of carrying out a personal belief, principle, or a quirk. My passion for breast cancer awareness doesn't really show in my taste for clothes or fashion accessories. But I've always believed in looking presentable, good grooming, and wearing clothes that are appropriate for age or occasion. My principles when it comes to fashion reflect my passion as a person in general.

Patty blogs at http://nonstopbabble.com/

Want to know what the Electrolux Wear your Passion campaign is all about? Follow @ElectroluxPH on instagram. Get yourself inspired by their words of encouragement. Plus, you’ll get information about caring for your home too!