Cuban Actress Heydy Gonzalez: “Pregnancy Isn’t a Disease”

Cuban actress Heydy Gonzalez alongside her daughter Galilea. Photo: Marcos Evora

By Adalina Hernandez Urquiola (El Toque)

HAVANA TIMES – She carries a purse on one side and on the other, she holds a restless hand, that wants to see and discover everything and post it on Instagram. Posts on this social media platform, especially the “Stories” function, have been her disovery and adventure this lockdown. Little Galilea says that she wants to be a YouTuber. She really likes the media and has stolen the spotlight on her mom’s social media. Her mother is Cuban actress Heydy Gonzalez and here she talks to elTOQUE about her experience of being a mother.

Tell us a little bit about your first maternal reference… about your own mother.

Everything I am today is thanks to my mother. She was a librarian at the Central Library in Ciudad Libertad, where the Story Festival is held every year. She would organize the event with her colleagues, and children would act out theater pieces. That’s where I began playing characters at just 4 years old. My mother would read me the stories and I would learn them off by heart so I could then take the stage.

She is a very introverted person, the complete opposite of me, but I think that she fulfilled herself somehow by watching me grow with this talent. That’s why she always instilled art in me, and it was even her that gave me the push I needed to take the ENA (National Art School) exam. She has been very close to me the entire time, she has never let go even for a second, and she is still by my side supporting every decision and every step I take. I am forever grateful to her.

Was Galilea always part of your plan or was she a surprise?

Galilea wasn’t planned, but she came when she had to. At 35 years old, I had to decide if I wanted my baby. She came to brighten up everyone’s life at home; she is the center of attention. Plus, she’s a very intelligent and active girl. I don’t remember being as clever as Gali. My mother says that I was, that we have a lot in common, but I think she outdoes me.

Many physical and emotional changes are experienced during pregnancy. How did this affect your projects at the time?

I remember that I did a teleplay called “La culpa”, alongside Patricio Wood, when I was 6 months pregnant. The character I was playing wasn’t pregnant and I had to wear lots of baggy clothes to cover up my belly, that was quite big by then. The scenes were very emotional, with heated arguments; all of my hormonal changes made the experience a lot more intense, and she would get rebellious in my tummy.

In my breaks, I would take advantage to talk to her a little bit to try and calm her down, because I could feel that she was also getting worked up, but I never stopped. I think this is why Gali is so active, because I spent my entire pregnancy like this.

Did you have to turn down or stop any project?

I had gestational diabetes and that forced me to be very disciplined with my eating times, but I always had the support of my team. Plus, I kept thinking that while a pregnancy requires a lot of being careful, it isn’t a disease: I kept working the whole time, even when I was almost 9 months, when my belly was up to my mouth almost [she laughs].

We mothers need to steam ahead with our own projects, especially for our children. I loved working during my pregnancy because I didn’t see it as something that could stop me; on the contrary, it was an incentive to carry on, she gave me strength for everything.

Heydy Gonzalez, an actress famous for her role as Hidroelia in the comedy series Punto G, kisses her daughter Galilea. Photo: Marcos Evora

What do you enjoy doing with Galilea the most?

Everything. I would like to set up a camera at home to record her because she is really funny, she has become the focus of my social media. When she doesn’t appear on my Instagram account, people ask me: “Where is she? What’s happened? Why haven’t you shared something with her today?” It’s really funny and happens all the time.

The pandemic has drawn us even closer. We usually roll around on the floor and play princesses. Sometimes, I have to trick her a little, or pretend that we are at a spa, for example, so she lets me wash her hair and brush it. I try to turn everyday activities into a game so she doesn’t get bored.

What would you like her to have from you?

She is everything I ever dreamed of, she’s a noble, good, committed girl, in spite of being so small. She likes to do everything well.

I don’t want to push her into anything she doesn’t want to do. I am going to give her all the freedom in the world to choose and do what she wants to do when she is older, and I’ll be with her, like my mother was with me, supporting her dream. Whatever it is, I’ll respect her.

I want her to be a good-hearted, kind girl, who shines for her simplicity, her naturalness, her spontaneity and I think she’s on the right path for now. I want her to be happy, I feel like she can detach herself from everything, but I don’t want her to be frustrated, she has to do something she enjoys.

How would you define your mother’s motherhood and your motherhood with Galilea?

I think that they are very similar because they have the same patterns. I come from a happy home and I have tried to give Galilea the same thing.

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