Certified Coordinated Bride 
Ekene
Journal Entry Number 1

A Long Distance Love

Bride: Ekene OkpalaBride’s
Groom: Obinna Nnadozie
Wedding Date: March 23, 2019
Wedding Location: New York

Our love was unexpected. It was December of 2016, and I was a few months out of a former engagement. My family is Nigerian, and we try to go to Nigeria every year around Christmas time. Christmas of 2016 was no exception, and I met my fiancé Obi in early January of 2017.

Obi is a friend of one of my cousins, and my cousin brought him to an event that was taking place in my mom’s house in Nigeria. Obi told me that when he saw me, he asked his friend “Who is that girl?” and my cousin, in his true over-protective fashion, promptly told him to stay away! We bumped into each other a few more times during my stay in Nigeria, and the last time we found ourselves in the same place, he finally approached me. I had just graduated law school six months prior, and our first conversation centered on the legal field in Nigeria. He asked for my number with a promise to get me information on how to become qualified to practice in that jurisdiction. We haven’t gone a day without talking ever since, and to this moment I am still waiting on the “law school information” that he promised me!

While boarding my flight back to the states two days after we met, I told Obi that we would see each other again soon, and I meant it! Fast-forward to a couple months later, I visited Nigeria again and we spent one month together. We had our first date in our now favorite restaurant, 355 Steakhouse and Lounge in Abuja, Nigeria, and we spent Easter and my birthday with each other. In August of 2017, I visited Nigeria again and we took our first “baecay” together, visiting Dubai and Istanbul.When we are not physically with each other, we are either chatting non-stop on WhatsApp, video calling on Skype, or sending e-mails back and forth.

Our lives quickly became wrapped around each other in a way that it is hard to believe that we were in a long-distance relationship, since our constant communication always made us feel like we were right beside each other. In December of 2017, it was Obi’s turn to visit me in New York, where we spent the holidays together and he got to meet my family. He also took me on an impromptu, multi-country European vacation. We got to kiss on the London Eye, eat pasta in Italy, cruise the Amsterdam canals, and smell French bread baking while walking the streets of Paris! Something else happened in Paris too… he proposed!

One year to the day we met, in front of the Eiffel tower, with all of Trucadero Square watching! It was the most romantic gesture that anyone has ever done for me, and I felt like I was in a fairytale, even if just for a couple of hours.We set our date within a month of being engaged – we will be getting married in the Spring of 2019 in New York City. While we have accomplished a few main items, we still have quite a ways to go in our planning. The very first thing we did was to book our planner, Victoria from Victorious Events NYC. Next, we booked our gorgeous venue. Since then, I proposed to my bridesmaids (and he asked his guys too!), we have written our guest list, and sent out our save the dates. We have also booked our MC, videographer,  photographer, and got some gorgeous engagement photos taken in the cities where we were both born and raised in – Lagos, Nigeria for my fiancé, and Brooklyn, New York for me.

We are currently in the process of booking a DJ, picking out our floral and décor, and looking for a vendor to create our invites and other stationery. And oh, I almost forgot, my dress! It is being custom made, and I haven’t even started the process yet! It is so easy to feel overwhelmed -when I check one thing off of my to-do list, three other items appear! I have quickly come to realize that planning a wedding while working full time and merging your life with someone else’s can be challenging and requires a lot of organization, patience, and, permit me to say, coordination (pun-intended). But my fiancé and I keep reminding ourselves to ENJOY THE PROCESS! We only get to plan our wedding once, so we are trying to soak it all up – both the good and the not so good – and live in the moment.

I am looking forward to sharing this fun, hectic, and unpredictable journey with you all!

Until Next Time,
Ekene