TAGS: Covid-19, ecq, quarantine, stars

Actress Assunta De Rossi is thankful for the safety of her family?—her husband, former Negros Occidental Congressman Jules Ledesma, and their two kids from his first marriage, Cristina and Julio Carlos, amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Photo from Instagram (@assuntaledesma)

In an exclusive phone interview with StarStudio.ph, Assunta shared details about their quarantine life. 

“We don’t go out kasi and also kung meron kami uutusan, for example like grocery and market, twice a month na lang ‘yon. Before kasi weekly, but I send one person out lang, once every two weeks to buy food. Anything na kailangan siguro, o-orderin namin online, minsan papa-deliver kami ng food, like ‘pag naghahanap kami ng something else, ‘di ba? Kung meron [sa aming] lalabas, we take precautions naman, kami naman ng asawa ko at ng mga bata, di naman kami lumalabas,” she explained.

Photo from Instagram (@JulesLed)

Recently, Assunta made the surprise announcement about her very first pregnancy on Instagram—16 years after her marriage with Jules. 

According to her, she already got past her first trimester, and she’s starting to experience more changes. 

“'Yung acidity ko parang nawala na, hindi completely nawala pero ang laki ng nabawas, pero I’m still losing appetite, hindi talaga ako makakain nang maayos. So I don’t know kung matatapos ‘'yung ganoong symptoms kasi some women, they feel bad hanggang manganak sila,” the actress elaborated.

Photo from Instagram (@assuntaledesma)

Assunta recalled, “I remember my Mom telling me, ‘Ay nako, lahat kayo ganyan,’ kasi she gave birth four times ‘di ba? 'Nako, lahat kayo ganiyan, masama pakiramdam ko hanggang manganak ako. Nakakakain lang ako nang maayos noong lumabas na kayo, gano’n,' and I noticed kasi pag tumitingin ako ng mga pictures namin, ganyan ‘pag pregnant siya, ang payat-payat niya talaga. Oo, mag-gogrow lang 'yung tummy niya pero everything else is really slim.”

Photo from Instagram (@JulesLed)

Her parents are currently both in Italy. She regularly talks to them, and her mother reassures her that what she’s going through is normal.

Photo from Instagram (@ermatsko)

Photo from Instagram (@ermatsko)

Looking back, Assunta narrated her journey to discovering her unexpected but much-awaited pregnancy. 

“Actually, what happened kasi kaya ko nalaman na buntis ako, I celebrated kasi my 37th birthday at Amanpulo.  ‘Di dumating ‘'yung period ko, so noong umuwi kami, I waited one more week pa bago magpacheck-up, then even him [Jules] was asking na. ‘Dumating na ba 'yung period mo?’. Sabi ko, wala pa. ‘Baka buntis ka na?’ Gumaganoon na 'yun,” she said. 

Assunta was hesitant at first since she and Jules tried in-vitro fertilization (IVF), a clinical  procedure of manually extracting and combining an egg and sperm in a laboratory, in late 2016. 

Unfortunately, it failed and caused her trauma. She also admitted that they were about to try it again this year, but things fell into place on its own. The next thing she knew, she was already pregnant—the natural way.

Photo from Instagram (@assuntaledesma)

“Ako talaga 'yung negative. ‘Ano ba ‘yan, ‘di naman siguro, baka ano lang ‘yan, baka stressed lang siguro ako.’ Maybe it’s age, sabi ko wala akong nararamdaman na symptoms eh.  Although sabi ko, not every woman is the same. Naghintay pa ako ng one more week. Pag wala pa rin ito tomorrow, I’ll go to the doctor. So nag-work pa talaga ako, and na-shock talaga ako. Talaga, positive? Oh, okay,’” she laughs.

Photo from Instagram (@assuntaledesma)

She also shared more of her initial reaction about the fact that she’s pregnant: “Nagulat talaga kami pare-pareho, even my family, parang, talaga? I just realized a week later when I first heard the heartbeat at six weeks kasi may soft heart beat na eh... 'yung parang na-ano lang ako, ‘Oh my God, this is real na talaga."

The first people who learned about Assunta’s pregnancy were her family and friends, although she was afraid to announce it. 

“I didn’t say it naman right away. Siguro I waited, I mean sa mga friends ko, sa mga barkada ko. I waited mga two more weeks pa.  And then sabi ko muna, ‘Uy ‘wag muna kayo maingay ahh. ‘Wag muna i-announce in public, kasi I’m also not announcing din. Masyado pang maaga, so I waited muna until my first trimester kasi 'yun 'yung pinaka crucial time,” she said.  

The first trimester (or 3 months) is an especially delicate time, as this is the period the baby first forms and settles in a mother's womb. 

Assunta can’t do much physically now. Her everyday routine is just basically resting. “Wala talaga akong pakinabang these days. All I do is eat and sleep, ayun nga, taking advantage of the quarantine,” the new mom described.

No preparations inside their home were made yet because of the quarantine, but she is hopeful that everything about the pandemic stop in time. 

“I’m really hoping talaga na everything would be normal in the coming months. Supposedly kasi, due date ko first week of November, so hopefully in the coming months I can buy some stuff already. Wala naman akong plano to have a bonggang nursery or 'yung mga ganyan. I just want essentials lang … hindi ko alam as of now kung paano ko mabibili lahat ng ‘yon.”

She also has her inevitable cravings in the most unexpected times. 

“I think the hardest part talaga was ‘'yung mas gising kasi ako sa gabi, at nagke-crave ako ng pagkain sa gabi. Ayoko manggising kasi it’s too early pa, at the same time hindi ako makalabas.  There’s nowhere to go, kasi may curfew, may quarantine. ‘Yung craving is torture talaga sa’kin.  Kasi my stomach is build up lang nang build up 'yung acidity. Gutom na gutom na’ko, ‘'yung asawa ko, magba-browse 'yun ng channel 'di ba, Food channel. Sabi ko tama na, ‘di ko na kaya, naguguton na ako,” Assunta shared.

Photo from Instagram (@JulesLed)

When asked which part of being a mother is her favorite so far, Assunta replied, “Your brain wants to enjoy it, but your body talaga can’t, na parang sorry, ito-torture muna kita ah,” she chuckles, also adding, "'Yung nagstart ako mag-download ng pang-baby, 'yung pregnancy monitor ba? Para mas nata-track ko. Hindi naman ako makapagpa-doctor eh so natatrack ko kung anong week na ako, kung gaano na kalaki supposed to be 'yung baby. It’s exciting din naman, it’s not all parang, 'Hay grabe, miserable na ako, gusto ko nang manganak, hindi ko na to kaya' or 'Ano ba ‘tong pinasok ko,' ‘di ba?”

Photo from Instagram (@JulesLed)

Meanwhile, her businessman husband Jules is adjusting to her needs. Assunta also shared that Jules is new to the changes she is experiencing. “Kaya minsan nag fi-freak out 'yun kapag nagrereklamo ako na masama 'yung pakiramdam ko, tapos sabi nya ‘Ano kailangan kong gawin?’ Actually wala, hayaan mong pagdaanan ko ‘to, you really can't do anything about it. basta support me na lang. Kasi sabi niya, ‘Naninibago ako’ kasi sa first marriage with his two kids, sabi niya, hindi daw ganoon,” Assunta said.

This quarantine, Assunta is focused on her pregnancy and the safety of her family. She shared some of the things she realized while staying home. “Everything talaga is temporary, 'di ba. All the things, all the money, darating ka sa point na wala rin pala siyang magagawa, like importante pa rin talaga na just give time for the family.”

“I always pray naman na sana maging normal lahat. I prayed that the pandemic will be eradicated. I pray also na makahanap ng cure or ng vaccine,” Assunta shared in a hopeful tone.

Assunta is aware that some women out there might be just like her, who are pregnant and having the same difficulties as her at the height of the pandemic. She knows it is not easy for them, too.

Photo from Instagram (@assuntaledesma)

She also wants to send a message to everyone affected by COVID-19: “It’s a war na mahirap talaga kalabanin, kasi hindi mo nakikita eh, unlike sa tunay na giyera ‘di ba? Alam mo kung sino 'yung kaaway mo. But siguro tibayan lang talaga din 'yung loob, that God is there. He will help us naman. You know napakadami nating talented scientists. Makakahanap at makakahanap pa rin ng cure yan.”