NewsPositively San Diego


Marriage is tough enough: How this Valentine's Day couple survived the pandemic

Paola and Jose at their summer gender reveal
Posted at 4:22 PM, Feb 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-12 23:01:30-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - A year ago, the San Diego County Administration building was home to the extravaganza that is Valentine's Day.

Close to 500 couples chose the special day to say, "I do." But of course, this Valentine's Day will be very different because of COVID-19 restrictions. ABC 10News decided to find one of the couples we profiled on Valentine's Day 2020 to find out how they survived year one during the pandemic. How unusual was it? Were they even still married? We were pleasantly surprised to find out they are Positively San Diego.

"Valentines Day is our favorite holiday. So, we wanted to make it official," said Paola Jimenez shortly after she tied the knot with husband Jose a year ago on Valentine's Day.

Fast forward a year later, and we're happy to find the young couple is still together despite what was a very challenging year. Thinking back, Paola and Jose now realize how different times were on their wedding day a year ago.

"It just felt special because we were sharing that same occasion with a lot of people," says Jose Jimenez.

That was back when large groups of people could gather together, and no one thought twice about it.

"My grandmother was able to be part of it," adds Paola. "We were able to have every single family member there."

How did this young couple make it through such a challenging year? A baby tends to keep you preoccupied.

"We have our baby girl Camila," says Paola holding her two-month-old baby. "We named her Joy because we want her to know that she was the joy of our lives waiting for her through this Covid year."

Camila Joy, born in mid-December, is what made 2020 so special for these newlyweds. She is the light of their lives. But 2020 also presented a few obstacles for pregnant couples.

"Her first heartbeat, the ultrasound, I was actually FaceTiming her I was in my car," says Jose. "Same thing with all the prenatal care she was by herself. I was just in the car waiting for her."

"It was pretty challenging," adds Paola. But, we made it through, and he was able to be there for the delivery, which was the more scary part for me."

Of course, they had to adapt during their summer gender reveal as well. It was a drive-thru event complete with social distancing, face masks, and lots of honking cars—the theme, touchdowns, or tutus. Even with Covid restrictions, it was still a big success.

"I was happy because I wanted a girl, adds Jose beaming with pride. "I always wanted to be a 'girl dad,' so when I saw pink, I think maybe I had some tears, but I was happy."

Like so many others, Paola and Jose also faced tragedy during the pandemic. Several family members were sickened by Covid, and they even lost grandparents to the deadly virus. Despite that, 2020 and their first year of marriage will always be about overcoming obstacles and new beginnings for this little family.

"It all was worth it seeing her," says Paola. "And our family members seeing her after all the hardships, the tough moments that we had. She was the light at the end of the tunnel, or 2020."