We sometimes write letters to ourselves to be read in the future, “To my future self…” but what if you meet your past self? What would you do?
When Veronica Balayo met herself in a Painting at the National Museum of Fine Arts, all she could do was post it on TikTok. In her multiple-photo post, a vintage Painting of Belen Ocampo can be seen on the first slide, and on the third and second slides are photos of Veronica Balayo standing beside the vintage painting of Belen Ocampo and their resemblance is uncanny. Balayo captioned the post, “Am I her reincarnation? 😱”
The post went viral and received mixed reactions from TikTok users because of the undeniable facial resemblance of the two. As of January 31, the TikTok post garnered 12.6 Million views and 1.4 Million likes.
The vintage painting of Belen Ocampo was part of the 43 other foto-óleos “Larawan at Litrato: Foto-óleo and Picture Portraits in the Philippines (1891-1953).” Turned out, Belen Ocampo is the mother of the historian Ambeth Ocampo which has reached him. On his Facebook Page he posted a screenshot of the TikTok post that also gained traction with 244K reactions and 4.4K comments as of January 31, 2024.
“Trending on Tiktok video this morning was the post of Veronica Balayo, a recent visitor to the National Museum who resembles a photo-oleo of my mother from the 1950’s! The video has earned over 400,000 likes!”
In an interview with Esquire Philippines, it was found that Balayo was originally from Davao City and was in Manila on a work trip with colleagues. To make the most out of their Manila trip, they visited the National Museum of Fine Arts and checked out the exhibit. When she saw the vintage painting, she couldn’t contain her surprise and confirmed from her colleagues the unmistakable semblance.
“The similarity was unmistakable,” Balayo said in her interview with Esquire Philippines.
Afterward, she took a picture alongside the portrait, only to discover that Belen Ocampo, the mother of a Filipino historian was also the model for the Philippine Travel Bureau (now Department of Tourism).
After reading Balayo’s story, do you think reincarnation is real?