Ms Sorsogon backs out of Ms Universe Philippines pageant

Photo from Galeria's Instagram account

SORSOGON CITY (Bicol Standard) -- Maria Isabela Galeria, Miss Universe Philippines Sorsogon 2020, has announced that she is no longer participating in the Miss Universe Philippines 2020 pageant.

"With a heavy heart, I believe now is not the right time to join the pageant. I still feel tired, and I don't think my body will allow me to participate in the activities of Miss Universe Philippines," Galeria posted on Instagram.

The Sorsogon beauty, who earlier tested positive for COVID-19, narrated on social media:

"I started to develop signs and symptoms on September 27, 2020, starting with nasal congestion and loss of sense of taste/smell. I occasionally felt like there was something heavy on my chest. Fortunately, it was bearable and didn't progress to a more severe level of DOB (Difficulty of Breathing). I then started to manifest rashes accompanied by extreme itchiness and dry skin. I woke up last October 3 with red, itchy, and teary eyes. I was under a handful of medications for more than two weeks to manage my symptoms.

Following the 14-day quarantine, I was supposed to be released on October 8. As per protocol, I needed to be asymptomatic for three days before discharge. Unfortunately, I was still manifesting some symptoms.

Last October 11, DOH declared my dad and me as COVID SURVIVORS. Praise be to God!!"

Despite the recovery, and even with a strong will to fight, [her] body is not well conditioned yet.

She thanked the people "who invested so much time and effort in helping me through this journey."

Among those who showed strong support for Galeria is Sorsogon first lady Heart Evangelista.

Evangelista commented: "I love you tabi! Always and always here to back you up! You know that ♥️ I believe in you so much because I know your heart ! Love you @mariaisabelagaleria ! Your story will only make you stronger :) the future is already shining for you."

Galeria previously made appearances on Evangelista's social media posts promoting Sorsogon tourism.