Gil Villa – The Philippine Star

September 16, 2021 | 12:00am

You may have heard of people against the idea of getting vaccinated against COVID-19.

Pregnant singer Sitti, due to give birth later this month, or let’s just say “when September ends,” should find those people not attuned to her cause. She had her doses of Moderna at 27 and 32 weeks, respectively.

The country’s top bossa nova singer openly expressed her thoughts why she made sure she availed vaccination and for the sake of other pregnant women out there.

“Lately, I’ve been seeing a lot of posts of preggos contracting COVID after delivery. I think I’ve seen two moms who sadly didn’t make it; their babies and families left behind,” she recalled.

For a distinguished singing voice, and who just released a new single called Buti Na Lang Hindi Ikaw, it’s a matter of being “proactive about it” and the conviction that “the best defense is to get vaccinated.”

“At the same time,” she shared, backed with non-fake news reading, “One out of every three Filipinos who are being tested turns out positive. It’s not entirely irrational to suppose that this virus will reach all of us. There are preliminary studies showing that vaccination is safe for pregnant women. And again, in light of unvaccinated pregnant patients getting COVID and dying after, with some losing their babies, too, the benefits of getting the vaccine far outweigh the risks. I would like to live long enough to take care of my child and still be with my family.”

Sitti was launched to stardom with Para Sa Akin some 15 years ago, and the same composer of that song, Emil Pama, is also the tunesmith behind Buti Na Lang Hindi Ikaw. The track was produced and distributed by Widescope Entertainment, helmed by executive producer Vic De Vera and supervising producer Neil Gregorio who also spearheaded her breakthrough album.

The former UP dean’s lister is married to businessman Joey Ramirez, and currently raising a toddler.

“Joey and I trust the science behind the vaccines,” she noted. “We trust that this is the best decision we can make for me and our baby in these extraordinary times.”

Sitti would love to address questions that other expectants may have. She further shared, “I have two preggo friends who got COVID, too. Both were treated in the ICU, yung isa napaanak ng maaga at 33 weeks. We all want to reach 37 weeks as much as possible because that’s when the baby is considered full-term already. Earlier than that and the baby would have to stay in the NICU. Under normal circumstances, that would be very costly and emotionally/physically draining. What more now when our hospitals are nearly full capacity and the Delta variant is spreading.”

“These are my primary considerations for getting vaccinated. I want me and my baby to be protected from severe COVID. I want to pass on antibodies to my baby while in utero. I want to do my part in reaching herd immunity,” she further stressed.

When asked if she experienced some side effects, Sitti revealed, “The only side effects I felt the day after the first dose were slight fatigue, heaviness on the injected site, and I pooped twice more than usual. Day 2 after the first dose I was back to normal. My succeeding ultrasounds show that the baby is doing okay, too.”

She added, “A lot of people think that after the second dose they can go back to their daily routines but no. Those two weeks are when we should take extra, extra care — staying home at all times and resting as much as we can. The doctor at the vaccination site asked for a clearance from my OB. So, to my fellow preggos, do bring it with you to save time.”

After releasing the inspirational piece Tahan last year, Sitti is back to her bossa nova roots. “Bossa nova will always be my home.”

Echoing Sitti’s triumph in most of her life steps comes from her gratitude for things that are meaningful, always thankful for being, in her words, “surrounded by discerning ears who help me have clarity.”

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