Throughout our lives, in all its facets, a woman’s touch has given us strength. Count the miracle of growing within and beyond her cradle, count her art of listening and her word of encouragement, count the beauty of the comfort of home, her model of faith everlasting, the lessons taught at school, the inventions to make life easy, the voice of freedom and of courage. A woman is always a big blessing in our lives.
Today, as the entire Silliman University community says a million thanks to Dr. Agustin A. Pulido for his gift of leadership characterized by an amazing 10-year display of his sense of humility, sacrifice, and courage, let us also take time to say “thank you so much” to the women in Silliman University’s First Family.
Our heartfelt gratitude to the President’s wife Dr. Dorothy “Doris” Pulido, she never liked being referred to as the “First Lady” - a mark of her gift of humility.
DR. DOROTHY ANN " Doris " BERMEJO-PULIDO (center) with Silliman University Trustees Roselyn G. Delloso and Fema P. Sayson
All first ladies should learn from Ma’am Doris as she never put any effort to make her presence felt. Her way of helping her husband was always in a silent and humble manner. There was no need for audience whenever she would go unnoticed as much as possible. For that, she is greatly admired. Mayette Utzurrum-Montebon considers Doris Pulido her role model because of her unassuming nature.
Ma’am Doris has actually been a big sister to many women at Silliman Church to whom she taught through her example of a life dedicated to Christian service.
As a medical doctor, Dr. Doris spent many years in the healing ministry, which was capped with a big responsibility as hospital director.
She had served as Chairperson of the Board of Deacons at the Baptist Church in Central Philippines University. Over here at Silliman University Church, Ma’am Doris is a member of the Board of Elders, and the chairperson of the Personnel Committee, which takes care of an important call - the choosing of pastors to lead the Church.
Mrs. Pulido is an achiever, yet as a mother, she never pushed her children to be in the same height that she has conquered. There was no push for the children to surpass her being a high school salutatorian, nor for them or for them to follow her footsteps as a medical doctor, or for them to be at the level of her husband’s impressive performance in the academe.
What she wants other mothers to know is that what counts more is “building-up the children’s self-esteem at an early age.” This is best achieved, according to this outstanding mother, by a concrete demonstration of love for the children – an unconditional love for the way they are, and the way they want themselves to be.
“Don’t be too critical to kids, teach them kindness by being kind to them.” She counseled. She said that it’s easy to teach the kids love and respect when their parents consistently demonstrate love and respect for each other. “Walk your talk,” is the best way to teach. “No calling of names or saying of bad words at home,” she stressed. After all, home is the first place where children feel and believe that there is God and the parents’ best teaching would be to honor God.
As to career choices, Ma’am Doris has successfully led her two daughters, Cybele Ann and Deneel, to their own successes by announcing that she would not want them to be in the difficult experience she had as a medical student. She made sure both would be self-motivated.
So, the former Campus Crusade leader Cybele, named after the goddess of nature, took up Business Management and obtained a master’s degree. She is now based in the US, and is married to Engr. Luther Risma. The couple is blessed with two daughters, six-year-old Aidra Ann, and one-year miracle baby Chai Lee.
Deneel, taken from an original ‘concoction’ of her parents, majored in English Language Teaching in college and finished a master’s degree in the same field. She is at present the Resident Manager of Bethel Guest House and is happily married to Lt. Col. Ezra James Enriquez. They are blessed with two handsome sons, high school senior Mark James and fifth grader Joshua James.
Ma’am Doris loves to recall the days when she would watch Deneel dancing Philippine folk favorites, and to see more of her graceful movements in Hawaiian and Tahitian dances.
With the Dr. Doris Pulido’s wisdom on motherhood, Oprah Winfrey was right when she said,“Biology is the least of what makes someone a Mother.”
Thank you Ma’am Doris, Cybele and Deneel for the gift of subtle and humble presence, for letting us see so much beauty in a simple life, and for the great example of life anchored in Christian service.
Happy Mothers’ Day!