Our 20 year anniversary is September 3.The tiny Republic of San Marino is the oldest surviving sovereign state and constitutional republic in the world, founded on 3 September 301. Although it would be fun to celebrate there on our actual anniversary, time slipped by, and we booked guests for that date and beyond. Fortunately, it is a former Fulbright scholar and her husband whom we are genuinely fond of, so it will not be a hardship at all.
During the course of events in the US with the Supreme Court decisions, it just seemed like it was time to take that final step into the realm of legality. The overwhelmingly heterosexual connotation associated with the word marriage makes it get stuck in my throat when trying to voice it in connection with gay couples (gay being sex inclusive) and their vows. Yet, when Ron and I started the dialogue, the concept has transformed from an annoying weed in the yard I wanted to ignore to a welcoming full-fledged botanical garden.
Just for the record, no one proposed to the other. It was just like 20 years ago when it went something like “Well what do you think about…?” It worked then, so why change now? Guess who raised the question both times!
Here are the tentative plans. If anyone attends the nuptials at all, chances are some attendees will be from Ron’s Iowa family. Same sex marriage is legal in Iowa. Iowa is centrally located making it travel accessible for others coming from other parts of the country, especially those from Michigan, Illinois, Wyoming, and Pennsylvania. This is not to say that regardless of where you live, you are not going to be invited and welcomed to attend. You are more than welcome to join us, but no pressure if you cannot travel. The location will be Des Moines, Iowa.
To fit into my school schedule and spring break, we are looking at Saturday, April 19th the day before Easter. Not that it was a conscience decision, but the timing seemed perfectly suited to the season of rebirth and renewal. Iowa being in the Midwest, it has some symbolic feel besides as it is in the middle of a divided country, yet it is a state leader in liberal thinking. The more I think about it, the closer to perfect it falls on the scale of best choices of venues. Here is hoping all goes well. There is a 3 day waiting period for the license. This may be tricky.
Then after realizing that spending six weeks in Panama and Nicaragua in December and January will severely be truncating our planning time; we had to speed it up. We are making calls to ministers in Episcopal, Unitarian, and other liberal churches in the Des Moines area. Interestingly, I found a list of 150 Iowan ministers who signed a petition supporting same-sex marriages. From this list, we were able to get other ideas for potential churches, but I favor Unitarian or Unity, but will flex enough to go with an Episcopalian. I wanted a 5 minute ceremony; Ron wants 30 minutes at least. After 20 years, we are still working on comprising. That never ends.
Keep us on your radar for the continuing saga and plans as they unfold.