The Brides Wore Dog Hair: A Shocking Look at a Wedding between Two WomenPosted: October 23, 2014
I used to say I knew how the biblical Jacob felt – working 14 years to marry the love of his life, Rachel. The truth is – he got to marry Rachel after seven, then work the last seven. So, I’ve waited longer. On October 21, 2014 – on the 14th anniversary of our original spiritual wedding, and 15 years after we started dating, my wife and I were legally married in Richmond, Virginia.
We didn’t have to wait because of some archaic law about the oldest daughter marrying first, or because one of our fathers was a con man trying to squeeze more work out of a drifter. We had to wait because a very loud group of biblical literalists led this country to believe that if two women married each other:
- Heterosexual marriage will spontaneously combust or lose all of its value.
- Moral society will crumble and fall.
- People will marry their pets, their furniture, or 12 people at a time.
- Children will become homosexual because it looks like so much fun.
- God will be unhappy and punish us (Earthquake? Collapsed economy? No McRib this year?)
If that happens, please know Cathy and I are truly sorry. We didn’t mean to ruin the world. We just wanted to see each other in the hospital, share insurance and social security benefits, file taxes without a hassle and get a family membership at the gym. We just wanted to be treated like everyone else, because we are ….well…just like everybody else.
In fact, we are probably not the best couple to be giving this expose on a same-sex wedding since being a lesbian couple is the least interesting thing about us.
- We just started a book on “mindful eating” to learn how to eat with gratitude. Thinking of all the people involved in supplying our food makes Cathy want to wash her hands repeatedly.
- Kellie is shopping a novel to literary agents and thinking of turning her rejection letters into origami cranes.
- Our dogs started a blog on Buddhist meditation and mindfulness called “The Beagle Way: Spiritual Bliss without Dogma.” They used to have a political blog but the current scene in Washington gave them indigestion.
So – you see – lesbianism – not that exciting.
But, just to show we are unlikely to trigger Marriage-pocalypse – here’s what it was like:
- Cathy got up crazy early, fed the dogs, read her email, and checked her vows.
- I slept until an hour before we had to get ready to leave, made tea, played on facebook.
- We put the dogs in their crates before we got dressed. Still, the fur was with us. “I see the dogs are coming to the wedding,” Cathy said, looking at the splotches of beagle hair on my black pants. “As it should be,” I affirmed.
- We were the last of the wedding party to get to church. No one was surprised.
- We stood outside in a beautiful natural sanctuary before a Celtic cross where an awesome and dedicated minister officiated the service. The weather was perfect, not one lightning bolt to be seen – not even when my phone went off and the Batman theme started playing during the homily.
- We prayed, thanking God for making us and this joining of hearts and home we call marriage.
- We affirmed out intention to love and cherish one another.
- We said vows. Cathy promised to weather the storms and dance through the joys of life with me. I promised to never part from her in life or death. We committed to be infinite together.
- We exchanged rings
- We listened to a beautiful homily about marriage, love, life and time. The pastor talked about our family of friends who uphold us, and the funny, faithful love that secures us.
- We were pronounced wife and wife.
- We kissed.
- We took pictures.
- We went to an after-wedding lunch given to us by my spiritual sister and dear friend.
- We ate, we drank, we laughed, we cooed at our 3 week old nephew, and shared recipe tips on grilling mushrooms.
- The manager of the restaurant came out and congratulated us. He told us with a beaming smile how happy we was for us and what a blessing that the world was changing. He sent out lemon cookies with 3 candles – one for our past, present and future.
- We hugged our friends and said we loved them.
- We went home, let the dogs out and fed the cat.
- Cathy read some nursing information and I attended a Buddhist seminar online.
- The next morning, we got up and went to work.
I’m not sure which step started the world-ending part – but when we got home from work the next day – it looked like all of our neighbors were still married. So far.
Turns out, we aren’t re-defining marriage at all. We are just living it. Day by day, step by step. We are doing the walk (not just the talk) of love. We aren’t perfect, but we are perfectly ready to keep trying. What a world it would be if all people, all religions, all laws could do the same.