The healthcare workers have been at the frontline of the COVID19 pandemic. They want their story to inspire others.
Love is a beautiful feeling that should be celebrated. When we have found the person we want to spend the rest of our life with, being able to tell them that and asking them to marry us are just the next steps. One nurse wanted to propose to his healthcare worker partner and couldn't find a better time than in the middle of his day job to do so.
Robby Vargas-Cortes, 31, a paramedic and EMS supervisor, was supposed to receive his vaccination on December 23, 2020, and he knew that his nurse boyfriend of five years was one of the people administering the vaccine at Sanford Canton-Inwood Medical Center. "I wanted for it to be a surprise," Robby was quoted as saying by KCTV5.
The vaccination appointment at the Canton, South Dakota hospital turned into a marriage proposal for this loving couple. Robby planned it so his boyfriend Eric Vanderlee, a registered nurse, would be the one administering the vaccine to him. Eric had no idea about the proposal. When Robby rolled up his sleeve, there was a tape on his arm.
Eric thought his boyfriend was joking and wanted to indicate where the vaccine should go. He thought it was supposed to be a "bulls-eye or something." Instead, there was a ring taped to his arm, and it took Eric a minute to register that.
"It just kind of dawned on me and I was like, 'absolutely, of course, yes.' It was just an amazing moment after I figured it out," the nurse said. After the proposal, which he accepted, he administered the vaccine to his new fiancé. "I wanted to crawl under a rock to be honest because I hate attention, but I was so surprised and so happy. It means we can start a new chapter in our life. Even though we have a pandemic going on, this shows that love does not go away," said Eric to Metro UK.
And Robby was out of the door within 10 minutes of getting engaged and vaccinated. He had to respond to a 911 call. The video was shared by Sanford Health on Facebook and it has become viral since then.
In the video, Robby shyly revolves his chair around as he holds the ring he bought for his boyfriend, who also accepts it with a blush on his face. The couple hugs while the others in the room cheer them on.
"I planned in for a week in advance, I thought it’d be a really memorable thing for us. I wanted it to mark us turning over a new leaf after a bad year. There were only two nurses doing the vaccinations so I made sure to jump in Eric’s line. I asked one of my co-workers to film it, but they were the only other person who knew," Robby told Metro UK.
Both of them have been on the frontline of the pandemic for many months now, and the stress of their jobs must have been hard. This new phase in their life will go a long way in making them happy.
They plan to get married in 2022. "I will cherish this moment for the rest of my life. I hope it will give other people hope, too, and make people smile. It would feel great if we can make a difference in people’s lives with our story," added Eric.