Children of beauty queens know the pressure of living up to expectations of their moms. But for Ma. Corazon “Corrine” Abalos, the fact that her family name is synonymous with politics is an added pressure. But the 23-year-old La Salle graduate is out to prove that she is not just a daughter of a politician. She is also her own woman.
Coming home to Manila from Spain
Before joining Miss Universe Philippines, Corrine was based in Spain, wherein she was teaching English to Spanish kids. Her stay however was cut short when COVID-19 started spreading in Europe and her parents asked her to come home.
” It was very hard because whenever we would be able to purchase tickets, the flight would always get canceled,” Corrine said during the Qrown Philippines interview last August 21. “It took a while because my program was supposed to be for 9 months and it almost took me a year to get home.”
Corrine patiently waited for two months to get home. While waiting, she was able to stay with friends in Madrid before finally arriving in the Philippines.
Ayan na si Miss Universe!
When Corrine announced she was joining Miss Universe Philippines, this was not a surprise to her parents – Mandaluyong Mayor Menchie Abalos and Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Chairman Benhur Abalos. After all, beauty runs in the family as Menchie once joined Binibining Pilipinas in the ’80s.
Corrine shared that she was glad that she’s been getting a lot of support from her parents on her journey.
“I always had thoughts of joining, it just that I was always shy about it or I wasn’t ready,” she said of the decision to join a pageant. ” It’s really humbling that my mom has experienced what I’m going through, so it’s really been helpful to me because she knows exactly what to tell me everytime I vent to her.”
She admitted that there was a point her dad would get upset when she’s bashed online because of the contest but eventually told her to ignore them and has campaigned for her in between his busy schedule in the MMDA.
Her grandfather, former Mandaluyong mayor and COMELEC chairman Benjamin Abalos has also been showing his support in her journey.
“Prior to me joining this pageant, him and my late lola, my namesake Corazon Abalos, whenever she would see me automatically ‘ay ayan na si Miss Universe or wow, ang ganda naman ni Miss Universe’. I think with that, my lolo has been supportive because he sees my lola in me I guess, because of my namesake,” she said.
“He loves seeing what I am doing and what I like about him is that he always checks up on me.”
Kris Aquino’s endorsement and a spot on the top 30
Corrine may have the political name to back her campaign but she came into the competition quietly, with people wondering her relationship to the family in the beginning. But it was not only her family name that caught everyone’s attention. In August, she got a campaign boost from no less than the Queen of Media herself Kris Aquino, who posted about her on her social media accounts.
Kris said she rarely campaigns in pageants but saw potential in Corrine. It also helps that her family has been friends with the Abalos family even before her mom, the late president Corazon Aquino served the country.
Corrine recalled that she was in a meeting when her phone buzzed nonstop.
“I was so confused as to why my phone kept buzzing. It was on silent mode but it kept on flashing,” she said. “When I checked my phone, I saw my friends were messaging me, my mom, my relatives, and then I opened my Instagram account and Facebook and that’s when I saw the post.”
She said that her hands got “sweaty” and that she was overwhelmed by the post.
” I just felt so good that I felt reassured that of what I am doing with this journey so far that somebody like Ms. Kris Aquino has seen me. She sees that I have what it takes to win this competition. “
Now that Corrine is part of the Top 30 candidates, she assured her supporters that she will do her best to win the crown. In an Instagram post on Monday, September 6, she wrote:
“So grateful to everyone who’s been with me since Day 1 (and for putting up with all my worries and anxiety)! I wouldn’t have made it this far without all your support and encouraging messages. We’re getting closer and closer to the crown.”