The architecture and city vibes were the perfect backdrop for this downtown Chicago engagement session.
Courtney and Devon were planning to get married this year but had to postpone to 2021 due to the COVID pandemic. “Our marriage is now our dream fairy tale. We pray that we will be able to celebrate with our loved ones in 2021 but more than anything we are praying God blesses our future marriage and continues to teach us how to be the best versions of ourselves for each other,” says Courtney.
Luckily, they were able to take some gorgeous engagement photos on the streets of downtown Chicago. When it comes to their love, Courtney and Devon say “Black love is important and should be displayed more often. We’re excited to grow old together and sit around with our grandchildren while telling them about our love story.” Scroll through to read more about their love story.
Let’s start at the beginning. How did you two first meet?
This is my favorite story! Devon and I have a mutual friend that Devon went to high school with. In our junior year, this friend was insistent on me meeting this guy that he thought would be a perfect fit for me. This carried on for a few weeks. I was extremely uninterested because at that time I had already met Devon via MySpace and really liked him but was scared to meet him in person. One day this friend made it a point to describe his friend to me and proceeded to set up a potential date. I told him no and that I was already interested in getting to know Devon and didn’t want to meet anyone else until I built up the courage to meet him in person. Low and behold, Devon was the guy he wanted me to meet all along. Devon and I officially met after that and it was love from there.
What makes your relationship special?
Our relationship is special for so many reasons. However, one thing that stands out is our willingness to choose each other everyday. We love to laugh and play. We have such a great time together. We also challenge each other and spend a lot of time trying to be better people for one another. The way to both our hearts is food so we try to cook a lot as well. What makes us unique is our journey and the understanding of how our relationship will be the foundation of generations after us. Black love is important and should be displayed more often. We’re excited to grow old together and sit around with our grandchildren while telling them about our love story. In hopes it will encourage them to go out and find the love they deserve and hopefully change the world because of it.
How did you know your partner was the one?
We knew our junior year of high school we would get married and were that special person for one another. I can distinctly remember a time when Devon and I broke up right before leaving for college. We were both sad but felt we needed time to focus on ourselves as individuals to ensure we did well in college. Well this break lasted for a year and a half and we both entered new relationships. I would say they were serious relationships. Although I was happy with my new partner I knew something was missing. I did not have the same feeling I had with Devon. I didn’t laugh the same and always missed him. We would both wonder about the other and talk from time to time but wanted to be respectful of our current relationships. One night I learned my partner was dishonest and stepped out on our relationship. By that time Devon was single was well. I was devastated and the only person I wanted to talk to was Devon. I called him around 2am and we talked until the sun came up. We knew at that point we were made for one another and being without each other was unnatural.
Give us all the details about the proposal. How and where did it happen? Was it a surprise? What was the planning process?
When I proposed to Courtney I was beyond ready, scared but ready. I bought the ring months in advance and had a few things I wanted to check off of my list before officially asking. One of those things was to ask her parents for her hand. After speaking with them and telling them my plans I was ready. I had, at minimum, 5 different ideas for the proposal. I enlisted help from her friends and family and everyone gave great advice but each idea was shot down because we all believed Courtney was on to us, which she was. I settled on a traditional approach. I took her dinner and called ahead to let the restaurant know what I was going to do. Halfway through dinner Courtney excused herself to go use the restroom. I signaled the waiter to grab my phone and record the moment. When Courtney came out I began my speech. She seemed surprised and I got down on one knee. I could feel all the eyes in the room staring at us. Another waiter came with the ring placed in a lite up cupcake and handed it to me. Courtney said yes and the rest was a blur. We finished our dinner and I had one more surprise for her. We got to her parent’s house where her best friends and family were there to help us celebrate. It was definitely a night to remember.
We’re all about the bling… Tell us all about that ring!
I went through a lot of designs with Courtney’s friends. She really wanted a cushion cut design and I had no idea what that meant lol. However, I found something that I thought she would love and she did. A year later, I wanted to go a step further. She now has a Halo oval-shaped diamond ring. I think she likes this one even better :)
What are you most excited about when it comes to your wedding planning?
I am excited to see all of our hard work come to life. As a young girl, I never dreamed of a fairy tale wedding. I dreamed of a fairy tale husband. Devon and I were set to get married May 24, 2020, and due to the pandemic had to postpone until next year. We worked hard to create a wedding that would be more of an experience for ourselves and our guests. It was devastating to know we wouldn’t be able to see it through. We learned a lot because of this experience. Our marriage is now our dream fairy tale. We pray that we will be able to celebrate with our loved ones in 2021 but more than anything we are praying God blesses our future marriage and continues to teach us how to be the best versions of ourselves for each other.
- Makeup Artist: Diamond Beauty
- Other Location: University of Chicago
- Photographer: Janelle Jaqueline Photography