How Zanjoe Marudo and JC Santos deal with heartbreak and grief
Every person deals with heartbreak and grief differently: Some people seek solitude, like JC Santos; others, like Zanjoe Marudo, surround themselves with friends.
“It has become my default to travel alone every time I feel pain or lost … when I’m grieving. I need some distance and take a step back, so I can be closer to myself, understand what I’m feeling and acknowledge the circumstances surrounding me,” he said in a virtual conference for the Vivamax romance drama “366.”
While he’s now happily settled with his wife, Shyleena Herrera and their 2-year-old daughter, River Aletheia, JC said he used to go on solo soul-searching when he was younger. “I need to do it by myself. It has been my process since I was younger, because I’m used to dealing with things on my own. It just makes sense to me,” he said.
One of his safe spaces a couple of years back was El Nido, Palawan. “I found a community there when I shot a film there … I met people with whom I can be myself. I went there a few more times after. It became my ‘unloading’ place,” he related.
JC’s costar, Zanjoe, is the opposite. In times of grief, he often turns to friends for some moral support. “I prefer to have people with me and do things I like and enjoy my hobbies. I play golf to clear my mind. I keep myself busy, doing things I love,” Zanjoe said. “I will face it (the situation) when things are lighter, with the help of my friends.”
He doesn’t necessarily have to talk openly about what exactly he’s going through. Companionship is more than enough. “I don’t have to talk about it … I just need company. Knowing that there is someone there for me is already a big help,” he said.
And as difficult as it is, sometimes, he said, you just need to feel pain. “You have to feel it until it dries up. Otherwise it (the pain) will stay there and resurface when you’re alone or when there are triggers. You have to get past it completely and remove it from your system,” he said.
What was the craziest thing they have done for love? “I almost moved to another country to settle down back when I was 23—almost! Good thing, my dreams prevailed,” JC said.
Zanjoe, on other hand, suggested that people in love don’t really notice if what they’re doing is “crazy” or not. “Everything you do for love, you don’t really notice whether it’s normal or crazy. There’s no specific thing that stands out for me, because, when I’m in love, I feel like every move I make is normal. I don’t assess my actions that way,” he said.
While the two actors are constantly on the lookout for new, challenging roles, JC and Zanjoe also expressed interest in possibly branching out to writing or directing, like their “366” leading lady and director, Bela Padilla.
“We will get there at some point because of our love for storytelling. I’m planning on writing and directing. I have some concepts now; I just have to present them,” JC said.
Zanjoe admitted that he needs to find some courage to go beyond acting. “Sometimes, when you’re interested in something, you’re scared of failure or rejection. But for now, I want to focus on doing projects that I haven’t done as an actor. I want to do more projects that can go outside the country,” he said. INQ