OUR FAVORITE ATE was given recognition this morning by the Bureau of Fire and the Department of Interior and Local Government for saving our lives (yes, me, Star and their Yaya Flora) during a fire in our condo last year.
I praise God for Ate Pia. She risked her own life along with her Yaya and went down 21 floors using the fire exit -- from the 33rd floor penthouse where she had an early afternoon swimming to our 12th floor unit. While her Yaya panicked upon seeing the thick smoke billowing near the elevator, our Ate Pia never lost composure and bravely went back for us, guiding her yaya to our unit.
Because of her bravery and presence of mind, we managed to go out of the building safely. In fact, we were among the few ones who got out of the building first. While there was no big damage in the condo, the firemen said we could have been harmed by the thick smoke. The danger struck me especially after KC De Venecia (the daughter of Speaker De Venecia) died of suffocation when a fire hit their home days after the incident in our condo.
I thank God for The Learning Tree for teaching their students about fire safety and what to do in case of fire. Because of the fire drill in school, Ate Pia knew what to do when we encountered the fire. Shame on me -- I panicked myself when I saw the thick smoke at the fire exit near our unit. Pia brought me back to my senses.
But I thank God most of all because of her selfless act -- going back for us when most kids her age (she was only 8 yrs old when it happened) would have only thought of themselves.
When I asked her why she came back for us when she and her yaya could have just conveniently gone straight out to safety, I was so touched with what I heard. Without batting an eyelash she told me "Of course, Mommy, because I love you." Oh the unconditional love of little children. Truly, Ate Pia lives up to her name - Sofia, full of wisdom!