Monday, October 21, 2013

Anniversary: What's In a name.

According to Lord Covington:

   Today marks two years of being officially married.  When reflecting on the times past, it sometime is difficult to establish the significance.  We originally were waiting until our country stood behind marriage equality; which, while improvements have certainly been made, we do not yet recognize love and commitment of all citizens.  So you can imagine my dumbfounded shock when Lady Covington proposed to me at a restaurant one day.
           We were eating at a Greek/ Middle eastern restaurant in Corpus Christi.  We were talking about any number of revolving topics that filtered past us every day. She was talking and I felt a weird tension in the air, and wondered if I had done something wrong.  The next part takes on a dream like quality.  I feel like she moved aside from where she was sitting, and there, in the setting sun, was her proposal, just outside the window of the restaurant.  Lights seemingly written in the air said simply "Will you marry me ?".  I was flabbergasted and more than a bit confused.  I had plans of my own to try to convince her that our union was a good idea, and here she was out ahead of me.  I'm quite sure I blushed, as my face seemed roughly 30 degrees warmer than the rest of my body. Obviously I said yes.
          When we used to argue about getting married officially or not, her idea was that marriage would be a celebration of our life together, rather than the institution itself somehow raising the status of our love and commitment. We have been living together since 2003, and were basically married in all but legality.

           I used to criticize weddings and marriages in that they were simply declaring your union before the eyes of humans, and that God had nothing to do with it.  However, in declaring your love before people, for a moment, they get to share in the unique joy that is before and after yours and yours alone.  That in and of itself is pretty significant.  That might just be enough for me.

According to Lady Covington:

What Mr. Covington doesn't know is that the transition from being absurdly anti-matrimony to pro-proposing was not as sudden as it would seem from his point of view.

A large part of me still thinks that marriage is a patriarchal scam, while also believing everyone ought to have the legal right and support of their country to partake in the same, and this part was extremely outspoken in my teenage years. However, there was always another part that was a closet romantic. C. would try to convince me in the early years of being together that we could get married and if I didn't like it we could always get divorced. I told him that that was not an option; if I did get married it would be the " 'til death do us part" type. I would consider marriage in general, but my disdain for the institution of it (and lack of federal marriage equality) would make me quickly suppress any interest as fluffy princess crap I didn't need to care about.

But I did occasionally partake in caring. In the beginning I thought "If we got married before I finish my degree, he might finish at the same time and we could have the same name and walk across the stage together" "We're coming up on five years together, that's the minimum I told Bibi I'd have to be with someone before I considered marrying them." (During a busy wedding time at the hotel we worked at then, I realized it was because there was a rush of 07.07.07 weddings.) "Oh, that's cute. I'd prefer 08.08.08, it's like triple infinity!"  I think I was going to bring this up on the vacation where we got into the major wreck, I lost some of my memories of the time just before the wreck, but I do remember that in the first 24 hours after waking up I did have the thought "Well we couldn't possibly get married on 8/8/8 now, I probably wouldn't even be able to walk down the aisle then!"

I continued pushing these thoughts away, until I tried doing some research for my niece for her upcoming wedding. She wanted to do things a bit differently, and she wanted to wear a green dress.  I started doing a quick Google search for 'green dress' and stumbled across Offbeat Bride.  Little epiphany light bulbs danced over my head.

I could do things Differently?! The scope of ways to challenge the normal mode of weddings was immense an appealing. 
So you think you'd like to be married, but you can't stomach the idea of your guy asking for your hand in marriage? You do the proposing. (I can do that!)
You want to get married but also want to show your support for marriage equality? Here are some ways to do that! (I can do that!)
So you don't like alcohol or drunk people? Don't serve alcohol!  (Done and Done!)
You don't like the standard theme and colors of a wedding? Make up your own! (OMG, the possibilities!)
Pick your own songs! Write your own vows! Do whatever the heck you want because it is about you guys!

We watched my niece get married in  January 2010. She was young and it was an ill-fated match, but it was beautiful and their love could be seen shining from across the room. I cried. I'm crying now thinking about it, and I'm yelling at the little voice in my head that is currently telling me not to like this stupid lovey dove crap. 

This cemented it for me. I would be doing this.  I had already been looking at rings. "Well, if I were to propose, I'd want to find this exact ring for him."  (Found and purchased!)  I planned several different proposal techniques, some ended up being undo-able. I made a giant light up 'Will you marry me?' sign. I carried the ring around for months afraid he'd find it. I knew that it would be a surprise, coming from someone who had been telling him for 7 years that I didn't want to get married. My proposal ended up explaining myself along those lines, and I'll admit it wasn't that romantic. It did get the desired response, however!

We planned and crafted for two years before the wedding date, and we have reminisced about it for two years since. It was a celebration of ourselves, our craftiness, our creativity, our love, our tribe and community, and most of all, our future. We will leave you with a slideshow of the wedding, and tell you a bit more about it later this week!

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