Ashley and Fernando

Image 1 of Ashley and Fernando

How We Met

Fernando and I both met in Heavenly Vision Christian Center in the Bronx in 2009, although we never formally spoke until May 2013. In May 2013, Fernando initiated a conversation with me over Facebook Messenger. This conversation was what started off our friendship and with our endless talks on various topics and many laughs later, our friendship soon blossomed into what it is today. When Fernando and I initially started speaking (we were both single at the time) I just knew he was a guy from my church, and I had no idea why he wanted to talk to me but I couldn’t be rude so I continued in conversation with him. We talked about everything random. Everyday.There was a point in which Fernando and I moved on from always talking on Facebook Messenger, to always talking on the phone and eventually in person.

We would talk so much, that he would come to my retail job at 8 am just to see me and converse, I always told him to pretend that he was a customer and needed help with something, and we would just walk throughout the entire store, just talking about everything. This happened a lot, and we would always talk in church but we didn’t want anyone to know that we were interested in each-other. We didn’t want anyone to make a big deal of everything because we were just “really good friends”. So we were secretive in the best way that we possibly could be, and we would even use code words around each-other and gave each-other nicknames in our phones so no one would suspect a thing! Eventually people started catching on because my smile would go from ear to ear each time we spoke. (see picture below)

Image 2 of Ashley and Fernando

how they asked

Just as we met in church, he also proposed there on May 2, 2016. There was a meeting scheduled for that night, and I attended, but my fiancee did not because he was at a work thing with his boss. All of our friends were asking me for him (they already knew what was going on), but I didn’t know at what time he was going to show up. As the meeting went on, I continued to ask my fiancee what was his status in coming to the meeting but he just said that he was “stuck in traffic”. As I took a seat in the back area of the church for the meeting, one of my pastors, came up to me and told me that she needed help with something and that involved me sitting in the very first row of chairs. I don’t like to sit in the very first row (sorry pastor!) but I was willing to help, so I went to take a seat in the front. I was sitting in the first row, will all of the pastor’s kids (and they also knew what was going on).

One of them seemed very distracted which was making me suspicious as to why was he so antsy (turned out he was one of the photographer’s from our engagement), but I just let it go and continued to pay attention in the meeting. As the meeting was coming to an end, I realized that my fiancee still hadn’t gotten in, so I was wondering where he was because I didn’t think that he’d be this late. A few moments after, my pastor made an announcement that a video was going to play on the TV’s, and there were cameramen that were going to photograph everyone’s reactions. I was very focused on the video and didn’t suspect a thing (it was an interview video without peoples faces showing), but little did I know that the video I was watching was my engagement video. My fiancee put together a video of him speaking to each of my family members about the proposal and caught their reactions on camera, but of course everyone’s face was cut off so I couldn’t see anyone, which was what led to the element of surprise. The video ended with an engagement ring, and that’s when it hit me “IT WAS A PROPOSAL”, but I didn’t think it was mine.

Image 3 of Ashley and Fernando

I had many friends at the time who were in serious relationships already. After the video finished, my fiancee walked down the middle aisle of the church and stood in front of me, then I just began bawling because I realized that IT WAS MY PROPOSAL. Everyone was cheering with joy, and Ellie Goulding’s “How Long Will I Love You” was playing. Everything was so perfect.

Image 4 of Ashley and Fernando

After my fiancee finished asking the question, I was so at awe that I could barely speak, but I SAID YES! As he placed the ring on my finger, I realized that not only was my ring perfect and beautiful, but that I get to marry the love of my life! #soontobeconstanza

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