Inspiring the OFW Breadwinners to Triumph in Life

Nurse, realtor, freelance model, cosplayer, breadwinner: Mary Grace Zerrudo wears many hats. Yet, behind the captivating photos and elaborate costumes, lies a story of a determined breadwinner, fueled by her dreams and unwavering belief in herself. Mary Grace, also known as Trixielee Yuan online, is just like any other Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW)—shouldering financial pressures away from home in a foreign land.
As a nurse based in Germany, Mary Grace was acutely aware of the financial struggles of being an OFW breadwinner. “It has been a crazy ride being here, without my family in a strange land,” she admits. Her real breakthrough came when she decided to invest in a real estate company in the Philippines. Recognizing that being a breadwinner doesn’t mean sacrificing personal needs and dreams, she saw this investment as a pathway to her future.
“Being a breadwinner does not mean that you will forget your own needs and dreams,” Mary Grace shared. “I think you should also think of ways on how you can be financially free in the future because you wouldn’t want to be struggling for the rest of your life.”
Mary Grace’s investment in real estate secured her financial stability and opened a door to an unexpected opportunity: to aid other OFWs in their journey toward financial freedom. She explains, “It did not just give me an investment and extra income, but it has opened doors for me to help others plan for their future.”
Now, she is a proud partner of SM Development Corporation (SMDC), the largest and fastest-growing real-estate developer in the Philippines. SMDC provides every Filipino and its investors access to a sustainable and attainable cosmopolitan lifestyle.
As a medical professional, Mary Grace equates the trust needed in healthcare with that of real estate investments. She said, “You have to go with somebody trusted.”
Mary Grace’s decision to invest was inspired by her mother, who was a domestic helper for 21 years. Witnessing her mother’s sacrifices, Mary Grace was motivated to break the cycle and give her family a better life. “Knowing that I have within me the power to change my life refreshes me,” she said. “I know she deserves more, and I will do everything in my power to give us a better life.”
One might ask, what sets Mary Grace apart from others in her field? The answer: her unique perspective and transparent advocacy. “I don’t know of any other nurse-realtor who outrightly claims to be a breadwinner,” she said. While some might see this as a weakness, Mary Grace views it as a point of pride and a connection with her ‘tribe.’ Her tribe, as she calls them, are empowered women OFWs, breadwinners fighting to secure a better future for their families.
Despite her challenging journey, Zerrudo remains an optimist. During difficult times, she emphasized the importance of rest as a form of self-care. She shared, “Part of being strong is knowing when you need to take a break… Resting does not mean quitting. It only means powering back.”
Mary Grace views our mindset as the most potent catalyst for transformation. She emphasizes the importance of looking at struggles as gifts, pains as potential, and scars as ammunition, a reframing that can empower and inspire.
Mary Grace’s journey breaks stereotypes and societal norms, celebrating the role of a breadwinner. She says, “Many people do not want to share that out of shame and do not want to be pitied. To me, that is something to be proud of.” She sends a heartfelt salute to all the breadwinners, acknowledging their sacrifice and resilience.
Mary Grace’s message to fellow OFW breadwinners is one of resilience, inspiration, and freedom: “Dream big. Continue to be an inspiration for those around you. I wish you a life of freedom, where you can be your best self ever.”
Grace’s journey is an inspiration, reflecting strength, resilience, and the power of dreams. It’s a testament that being a breadwinner doesn’t mean putting oneself last but investing in one’s future, becoming financially savvy, and helping others do the same. It’s about breaking cycles, building trust, and empowering each other to change our lives for the better.
As she continues her journey, Mary Grace is eager to meet new people and extend her supportive community. If you’re an OFW or in Germany or know someone who is, don’t hesitate to connect with her. 

Connect with Mary Grace Zerrudo

Email: zerrudomarygracemarte@gmail.com

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