"It changed my whole being."
These were the words of Judy Ann Santos as she shared her experience adopting Yohan when she was 26 years old and still single.
"I prayed for her. I asked the Lord in every single prayer, parati ako nagpupunta sa adoration chapel noong dalaga ako na, ‘Lord, sana kapag 26 na ako, magkaroon ako ng anak na babae. I don’t know kung bakit ang specific nung edad. Hindi ko alam kung saan nanggaling, but at 26, I got Yohan," she said during the Paano Kita Mapasasalamatan online media conference.
She continued, "It changed my life. I wasn’t prepared. Naramdaman ko na lang na okay, go. Pag-uwi ko, nanay na ako. It changed my whole being, my lifestyle, everything."
Ryan Agoncillo also legally adopted Yohan when he married Juday.
The actress admitted that it was tough to tell Yohan initially that she was adopted.
“It was hard as it is to tell her nung simula that she was adopted and the process of explaining to her every single time she would ask me about her parents. She would ask us, ‘What if one day, I want to see them?’”
“Mahirap din bilang nanay na mag-grope for words para lang masagot mo ng maayos 'yung anak mo. Isa 'yun sa mga tinuro niya sa akin, 'yung I will be honest in whatever form I could, kung paanong salita ko ito ibibitaw sayo. It could be painful, but I promise you, I will never leave you,’” she stated.
Judy and Ryan have two other children, Lucho and Luna.