Jarell and I got married June 17, 2017 at the Eldorado Country Club in McKinney.It was a day full of love, laughter, tears, and definitely sweat.
I woke up that morning with an air of calmness surrounding me. I didn’t experience that nervous, sweaty, need to vomit feeling that many brides talk about on their big day. I just remember feeling ready. Ready to meet my best friend and love of my life at the end of that altar. I hadn’t talked to him since the rehearsal dinner the night before.
Bemnet (my Maid of Honor and sister/friend for life)drove us to the venue to get ready. We were the first of the girls to arrive. I met my (frantic) mother there and gave her the biggest hugs as she, in a way that only she can, began orchestrating the decor for the big event.
As I was getting ready, the girls started trickling in and got the party started! I did my own hair and makeup for the day. I know that most prefer hiring someone to do these things, but I wanted to look and feel like myself and, believe it or not, it was pretty soothing for me.
Our photographer, Marscel HP showed up and started taking pics of us ladies getting ready, as well as individual shots for the girls. Then he moved onto the fellas. Marscel was such a joy to work with. He made getting ready so much fun, and turned our contrived laughs into real candids.
Then, everyone left me. It was time for the bridal party to line up and I had to stay sequestered so Jarell wouldn’t see me. My mom and I got to spend a few quiet moments with each other before I got the call that my dad was coming my way. I put my arm in his and we walked down the empty hall together, making our way to the ceremony.
As the doors opened to the ceremony, I looked at my dad and asked,
Are you ready?”. He said “Oh, yes. Are you ready?” And I said, “Oh yes. Let’s go.” And in walked. At that moment, nothing else mattered. I couldn’t see the cameras going off or hear the music playing. I couldn’t see anyone but my groom.
I practically ran down the aisle to him. I couldn’t wait to finally be doing THIS with him. To finally exchange our vows and commit our lives to each other. I was running into the next chapter of my life with my groom right by my side. He looked amazing. His vows were sheer poetry to me. I squeezed his hand the entire time we were at the altar together and never wanted to let it go. And before we knew it, it was all over.
We ran out to OutKast’s “Hey Ya!” super excited to finally be husband and wife. For the rest of the night, we couldn’t keep our eyes off of each other. We were in a trance. Under a spell. Then we took our photos and headed into the reception. The bridal party entered like an NBA announcement (#teamOdom) and we had a blast. We spent the rest of the night, eating, dancing, taking hundreds of pictures, and enjoying our friends and family.
When the night had ended, our guests sent us off beaming. We spent the rest of the night trying to make sense of the whirlwind of the day we had. It was amazing. It was surreal. We are still trying to wrap our heads around it, but the pictures sure do help.