Blissful Blooming: Marivi Soliven, Amanda Cua of Backscoop, and Myra Aquino on Their Discovery Through Self-Awareness

Written by: Daphne Sagun | 9 months ago

Times are tough, but Marivi Soliven, Amanda Cua, and Myra Aquino sure know how to push through despite these uncertain times. The Indiependent Collective proudly held Blissful Blooming: Discovery Through Self-Awareness via Zoom on May 28, 2022, which is a roundtable discussion in celebration of Mental Health Awareness Month. Panelists Marivi Soliven, Amanda Cua, and Myra Aquino openly shared their experiences during the pandemic: how they discovered and re-discovered themselves, what mental health means for them, and how they faced the challenges brought by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The three stunning women saw a lot of changes in their lives over the past two years. Myra shared that the pandemic forced her to re-discover herself, to confront the thoughts that she was evading pre-pandemic. Amanda talked about meeting different new faces of herself, and how the pandemic made her lean into her creativity and become more self-aware. Marivi talked about the film adaptations of her stories, The Mango Bride and Pandemic Bread, the recent social issues in the United States and the Philippines, as well as shared her love for baking.

When asked what mental health is for them, the three all agreed on one thing: that happiness is just one part of mental health, but it’s not everything. “Mental health is also what you think, how you feel about yourself and what you’re doing,” Amanda shares. Marivi and Amanda also briefly touched on the mental health issues present in their communities, particularly depression and domestic violence.

The discussion is heart-warming, inspiring, diverse, and reassuring. Given the problems that the world is currently facing, seeing these three women talk about their journey inspires us to be braver in embarking on our own.

The event also featured a special guest performer, Jouliene de Villa, an aspiring young Filipino musician. The pink-haired artist performed a wonderful cover of I Don’t Wanna Be Okay Without You by Charlie Burg, making the Saturday morning feel lovely and cozy.

Sadly, panelists Eric Rotaquio and Bryl Lim of PocketDevs were unable to make it to the event, but Indie-Co is still grateful for their coordination and effort in collaborating with us.

The event was made possible through our partners, PocketDevs, Mayari Clothing Philippines, Colin’s, and MAYA Film Production.