When the groom walked up to the bride at a mutual friend’s birthday and asked for a dance, she almost said no. Then she saw his pretty brown eyes and the rest, as they say, is history. See the photos (and the love) from their New York nuptials.
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Bride: Jameelah Joy Hayes-Paul, 40, Lawyer
Groom: Elijah Erasto Paul, 35, Teacher/Barber
The Big Day: November 10, 2016
Location: 26 Bridge Brooklyn, NY
Style/Theme: FALLing In Love
Planner : José Rolón Events
Caterer and Cake: Ms Dahlia’s Cafe
Venue : 26 Bridge
Draping: Shades of Grey
Lighting: Universal Light & Sound
DJ: Pigeon Whole Music
Hair: Hair by Sadiku
Makeup: Fairweather Faces
Photographer: Ross Oscar Knight Photography
Photobooth : We Love Photobooths
Officiant: Hon. Paul Grosvenor Bride & Groom's Hotel: NY Marriott at The Brooklyn Bridge
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"I don’t sleep the night before because I was so anxious," revealed Jameelah of her pre-bridal jitters. "I even worked out in the morning before my Glam Squad arrived. I thought the exercise would help with the anxiety. Not at all! I never dreamed of being a bride or what my perfect wedding would look like. I will say that it was one of the most stressful, exciting, crazed, and fun days of my entire life."
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"Being a groom was awesome!," said Elijah. "I didn’t do much through the wedding planning process, however, the day of was where it really started to hit me that I was getting married. I took special care and attention to detail. I wanted to make sure that she saw me at my VERY BEST that day. I never thought of what it would be like to be a groom or husband until I met Jameelah. And my thoughts have always been about being an amazing husband. Being a groom was just the vehicle to get to the prize."
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"My sister and friends woke up early one Saturday morning to go dress shopping. One of my friends said, ‘Jameelah, one says Ms. Hayes and the other says Mrs. Paul’ and that statement made me think. I came home and I asked Elijah, ‘on our wedding day when I walk down the aisle, do you want to see Mrs. Paul for the first time OR Ms. Hayes for the last time?’ He smiled and said he wanted to think about it. After a few days, he randomly sent me a text and said he wanted to see Ms. Hayes for the last time…that’s the dress I chose. And he LOVED IT! I felt like I was floating after I put my dress on."
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"He is a quiet storm," began Jameelah to describe her groom. "Elijah is a simple man that truly leads with love and laughter. He doesn’t require much to be happy and my daily expression of love always puts a smile on his face. He has a kindness that is so difficult to find in people. His energy provides a level of comfort and freedom that I had yet to experience. And now I am beyond blessed to experience it every day."
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To pull together her bridal look, Jameelah donned a three-panel veil that was simply beautiful.
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We love seeing a sister circle like this one.
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"I believe in love and have experienced true love but Elijah is true love with a twist. He planted his feet firmly in my life and made a decision that he wanted and needed to stay there…with me."
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"His beard and teeth!," said the bride of what she loves most about her groom. "Seriously Elijah has a level of patience and understanding that is unmatched. His willingness to square his shoulders and work hard for us is both sexy and simply beautiful to watch."
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"Jameelah kept taking pieces of my heart, as time progressed I was no longer able to envision any part of my future that did not include her," revealed Elijah of why he chose to make Jameelah hiss wife. "A friend of mine asked me if you broke up, would you be ok with seeing her with someone else. And I said no. That solidified my decision."
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"There were several occasions I can recall that revealed to me that she was the one; it was never one thing or one moment but a culmination of things. The first thing was her smile, no matter how many times I’ve seen it, it still feels like the first time," admitted the groom. "Then there was the time I went to her house, it had to be about 8:30pm. I got there about 15 minutes after she did. She was still in her work clothes. She looked at me said 'are you hungry?' then took off her blazer and prepared a meal. Her willingness and ability to nurture and care is like none that I have ever encountered."
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"He thinks of me when I don't think of myself. We are homies! His level of patience is unmatched! He danced, called, and texted his way in my life and never left! Elijah and I truly friends. We laugh, cry, argue, debated, etc but we always make it back to the friendship, love, and respect we have for each other. Besides we are meant for each other, we are the last two people in this hemisphere with blackberry phones! Matched made in heaven!"
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"My older brother walked me down the aisle because my father is deceased," said the bride.
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“I was happy and excited,” said the groom of being at the altar with his bride. “I smiled the ENTIRE time because I couldn’t believe that we made it to where we were. I loved the way she looked at me and hoped she would look at me that way all the time. I was also nervous but the happiness definitely outweighed the nerves.”
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"I didn’t think that I would find true love. When we met I barely believed in it," said Elijah. "I don’t think I found true love, I think true love found me. Our relationship wasn’t traditional. One day I woke up and I was already in love."
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Although the bride and groom didn't have a traditional ceremony, they did honor tradition by jumping the broom.
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"When Elijah would regularly tie my loose shoelaces or remove my shoes after a long day, I knew he was the one! I always say that Elijah is the one who never left. No matter the situation, he was always there to provide the support without me ever asking. #PersistenceBeatsResistance."
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"Jameelah is kind, loving and loyal to a T. She is supportive and she will always tell me the truth even when I don’t want to hear it," said Elijah of his bride. "She is smart, educated and successful but still very humble and willing to learn. Jameelah can steal a room with her energy and her smile will brighten a room. She is confident and shy at the same time. All of this and the bonus is that she is Beautiful inside and out."
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For their first dance as husband and wife, Elijah and Jameelah shared a moment to "Point Of It All" by Anthony Hamilton.
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"Our cake was cucumber coconut with butter-cream icing. The cake was decorated with fall color edible flowers." Yum!
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