Iza Calzado remembered her late mother Mary Ann Ussher on her birthday on Sunday, June 13.
On her Instagram page, the Kapamilya actress shared a photo of her mom before wishing her a happy birthday.
"You were so special you had 2 birthdays in a year (thanks to paper work issues) and how you fully enjoyed having both days to celebrate! Been feeling your energy a little more the past couple of days and it gives me great comfort to know you’re still near, guiding me through this journey called life. Taking it all in for you, Mama. Keeping you alive in my heart, forever. Happy Birthday, Mary Ann," she wrote in the caption.
Iza's mother died in 2001, and her cause of death was initially reported as cancer.
However, in October 2019, the actress revealed that she lost her mom to depression after years of struggling with bipolar disorder.
She opened up about her mother's death in a video released by She Talks Asia, a women's movement she co-founded, on Mental Health Awareness Day.
“I didn’t realize she was actually going to do it because there was actually a point in my life [where] I thought it was an act. I thought it was a way for her to get attention. And then suddenly she did it," said Iza, as she recalled the moment she found out that her mother committed suicide.
“And then immediately... guilt comes in," she continued. "It’s my fault, it’s dad’s fault, it’s kuya’s fault... And then there was the shame. There was also shame from the Catholic Church. Her body was not allowed to be blessed in the Church that she supported.”
According to Iza, being completely honest about her mother's death is the greatest gift she could ever give her.
"I want to let her know that I am no longer ashamed and I understand her," she said.
If you or a loved one is in need of help, the National Center for Mental Health (NCMH) has trained respondents to properly deal with those in need. Contact the hotline at 0917-899-USAP (8727) / 0917-989-8727. You can also contact Hopeline Philippines at 0918-873-4673 (Smart), 0917-558-4673 (Globe), at (02) 8804-4673 (PLDT).