Marriage Equality became the law of the land on June 26, 2015! Now, finally, we all are able to have our cake and eat it too!
I’ll take you through the history of our marriages leading up to this landmark date.
Col.Pat and I experienced our first wedding on March 10, 2004 in the majestic San Francisco City Hall. She was 71 and I was 51 years old. We had been in a committed relationship for 20 years. A rather long “engagement”.
As we stood in front of Mayor Gavin Newsom’s office and repeated the words of the almost angelic officiant, we were both brought to tears. This simple ceremony and act of commitment was beyond our imagination until Mayor Newsom opened the city and county of San Francisco to marriage equality for the LGBTQ community. This was the first occasion of official same sex marriages and happened about two months before Massachusetts made marriage equality legal on May 17, 2004.
The San Francisco weddings lasted only a month but it put the fire in our bellies to work even harder for the rights we knew we deserved. 4000 couples flocked to the city to participate in this monumental event. Our participation in these first bold steps on the long road to Marriage Equality will always hold a red letter place in our lives.
Our California sanctioned marriage took place on September 29, 2008. Marriage Equality had arrived to our state and we knew the threat of Proposition 8 could remove it in the coming November election. Our fear of the potential loss of our rights moved us to action in a rather short window of time. We, and over 18,000 other same sex couples did not have the luxury of long term wedding planning. No matter–it was glorious!
My mother and her significant other, Jack, witnessed this remarkable milestone as they accompanied us to the County Clerk’s office in Auburn, California. A divine backyard reception followed. The well wishing group of friends and family enjoyed the delectable cake, pictured above, made by my sister Phyllis. Champagne flowed and a rainbow painted the evening sky! But a thunder cloud lurked in the distance