Pandemic Chronicles: How I Met My “For-Lifer” Online
by Luisa Therese V. Singson
February truly is the month of love and hearts. I can recall back then how much I wanted a love like I always see in those cheesy rom-coms– the fast and sure kind of love; a love that meets you in front of the altar. I would often imagine myself being swept off my feet and getting lost in the bliss of simply having your person.
Being stuck in quarantine for over two years has certainly changed a lot of things, from finding work, virtual classes, home lockdowns, and long-distance friendships– even relationships. But the lingering question in my mind is “internet love– does it really work?” Well, for one member of our school staff in the SHS department, PM truly is the key.
Ms. Ermor Francisco (better known by her students as “Ms. Mor”) met her now-husband, Ryan, on Facebook wherein their internet love story began. Both knew each other through a mutual FB friend– Ryan’s ex-girlfriend who was Ms. Mor’s former churchmate and disciple. What started from a simple “hello” would soon blossom into something “more”.
“I was quite harsh with my replies to him!” Ms. Mor said. Admittedly, she had plenty of rules, and she had set her standards high– as she should. However, Ryan, being true to his words, remained consistent. Communication during a global pandemic is difficult as it is, but he made sure to always give her the attention she deserved. Though the daily Facebook messages greeting her “good morning” and asking if she has eaten yet were often met with “and so?” and “who cares?”, Ryan’s perseverance pushed through and Ms. Mor grew curious of him– fond, even. But she had to be sure of him first before anything serious.
“I gave myself and him a chance to know each other. Eventually, he confessed and asked for permission to court me. Since I was no longer a child and already at the right age, I allowed him– but with some conditions.” Respecting Ms. Mor’s standards was a must and courting her would also involve “courting”/working to gain the favor of her family, friends, and church.
Ms. Mor also had a list of required documents– her brother even commented that this was the first time he had seen a man make “ligaw” like he’s applying for a job. She recalls, “I told him that he should visit me at my house and bring documents like his PSA (to know his age), college diploma and TOR (to ensure he is a graduate or a degree holder), CENOMAR (to know if he is legally single), and many more. Actually, I was not serious about this. I just wanted to challenge him or make him hopeless. Surprisingly, he did what I said.”
Ryan went to their meeting place ready, even preparing everything ahead of time to make sure that the whole day would be hassle-free. He also brought food for the whole family to eat! After which, Ms. Mor and her family agreed and Ryan began practicing the traditional way of courtship. He was generous, giving gifts and extending an arm to help the people closest to her. But the most touching and sincere thing Ryan has done for Ms. Mor was when she had an emergency that she couldn’t attend to and he was the one who helped her without a second thought.
“He was working in Pasay and, despite his hectic schedule, he helped me bring my mother to the hospital. I was crying and I didn’t know what to do, so I messaged him and said that my mother needed to be hospitalized. Without another word, he went to Marikina just to aid us.” Ms. Mor says.
But his generosity did not stop there. Ms. Mor notes another memory where Ryan’s care for her and her family outshone all her doubts about him. “Another situation I won’t forget was during Typhoon Ulysses. Since my mother and I needed to evacuate, we went to our church to stay. Ryan, despite it being three in the morning and all the roads were flooded, went to Marikina to make sure we were safe. It took him a whole day to get to our church. It was November 12, 2020. Afterward, he helped us recover and rebuild our house which was struck badly by the typhoon. Even now, he is still with me, serving God and attending the church, even participating in different church activities. I have many more stories to share but in the end, he proved his unconditional, unfailing, and undoubtful love for me.”
They married shortly after with Ryan only waiting for her “yes” as soon as she agreed to let him court her. Since the day they met, he told her that he already knew that she was the one he was going to spend the rest of his life with. Much to his excitement, he was already planning for their future, even securing a home for them to live in after they get married. And sure enough, on April 30th of 2021, Ryan proposed to Ms. Mor.
I think you can also guess what happened next?
A love story like theirs is hard to come by, but love is out there– for everyone. To give us all more hope during this Valentine’s season, here are three (3) tips that Ms. Mor would like to impart to her students, co-teachers, and to anyone that comes across her wonderful journey to finding her “for-lifer”:
- Learn how to wait. Always try to be the best version that you can be, not only for your significant other but also for yourself.
- Know your priorities and be financially stable. Have secured diplomas and prioritize your mental health. There is no need to rush because love is sweeter when waited for and when you allow everything to fall into place.
- Have guidance. Always ask God first and place God in the middle of the relationship. This will help and make a good foundation that will make your relationship stable and strong. Also, ask your family and friends, for they know what is best for you. Do not ignore the advice they give.
With an immensely joyful blessing coming their way, both Ms. Mor and her husband are very excited. They are thankful to the Lord for blessing her with everything that she has, especially for the baby inside her womb.
Congratulations, Ms. Mor from the entire RAMpage team and we wish you more love this Valentine’s season!