The wedding as an afterthought

We got married. You were not invited. I’m sorry. We were invited, but barely.

Pam and I went on our first date in July of 1999, and it’s taken me at least that last 15 years to sort out enough of my feelings about marriage to actually decide to get married. And I’m still sorting. But there were finally enough reasons, and by that I mean enough benefits, to getting married that we did it.

weddingphoto

Marriage, in the most practical terms, affords certain protections and guarantees. If I sound like a lawyer, that’s intentional, because this is about the law. Our marriage, which took place on the last day in September, was conducted by a judge and approved by a courthouse clerk in Illinois. We didn’t have a wedding. And we barely told anyone about our plans, because I didn’t want people to feel left out. How ironic.

But the irony doesn’t end there. A week later, and four days after we returned home to Colorado, the media megaphone announced that the Supreme Court had refused to entertain any more cases banning gay marriage, because they have made up their mind on this topic: People of the same sex are allowed to get married and entitled to the same benefits, at least as far as they’re concerned. I was driving home from the dentist when Pam called to tell me.

“The AG is issuing marriage licenses in Colorado,” she said. Not one for time-wasters like “Hello” or “How is your day, sweetheart,” it took me a minute figure out who the AG was and what we were talking about.

“Should we have known this would happen?”

My worry is always that we’re not legitimate homosexuals, not because we don’t love each other and enjoy doing unsanctimonious acts to each other, but because we’re not following the gay causes closely enough.

“I don’t think so,” said Pam. “Do you regret getting married last week?”

“Of course not!” And I didn’t regret going to Chicago, either, because we’ve always wanted to eat at a Rick Bayless restaurant and see the Field Museum of Natural History. So, if you’re wondering about a honeymoon, that was it. It wasn’t the Seychelles, but it was lovely.

We might have a wedding. We want to get rings. And like all of our big life events, it’s coming to us slowly and in small parts. I like it this way, most of the time, because in spite of wanting to believe that change comes with iconic images and large bursts of joy, by now I understand that life is made up of small, sometimes almost unnoticeable acts.

It’s taken more than a hundred years for our collective democracy to decide that I could marry the person I love. And it feels like a consolation prize. It promises that I can ask for and should receive all of the monetary and legal benefits that marriage has bestowed on everyone else who has made this choice, but it doesn’t guarantee much else. It doesn’t feel like a gift as much as a necessity.

And now to decide if we will have a wedding. What do you think?

Tonight at 9

So, you all know that I’m a recovering journalist. Well, just like any recovering anything, I sometimes backslide. But this lapse was for good, not evil.

I interviewed the moms behind a modern-day civil rights movement for BlogHer this weekend. Check it out here. Read more of my thoughts on this excellent documentary here on Village Q to be super-prepared when you watch the movie The Case Against 8 on HBO. Tonight at 9. Seriously.

thecaseagainst801

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© Sarah Ann Gilbert and Seven Little Mexicans, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Sarah Ann Gilbert and Seven Little Mexicans with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

I wrote this. And it has math. And babies.

First comes love, then comes marriage… wait, no. Did we do the k-i-s-s-i-n-g-ing yet?

For our family, the order of operations wasn’t quite the same as the playground taunt. Luckily, there’s a Gallup poll graph that can help make sense of all this. I wrote about it over at VillageQ – – check it out. It has math and babies. As promised. Something for everyone.

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© Sarah Ann Gilbert and Seven Little Mexicans, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Sarah Ann Gilbert and Seven Little Mexicans with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Gay marriage passed in Illinois, but not without some confusion about driving cars

Illinois has passed a gay marriage law. (Yeah!) Maybe Pam and I will get married there. And Hawaii is now also an option. But I don’t want to get side-tracked. The law in Illinois was not passed without some important dialogue from both sides — the right side and the wrong side. And I’d like like to comment on something from the wrong side, before we move on.

This man – Apostle Paul David Rogers – told a radio station that “gay parents are like 5-year-olds who think they can drive cars.” I agree. And I don’t want that to get lost in all the other stuff that he was saying about God ordaining lions and chickens. Because, well, that would be crazy. Those are animals, and animals should not be leading churches or teaching the Bible, mostly because they can’t talk, but also because they probably won’t fit in those fancy robes properly.

So anyway, as a gay parent I would just like to say that I AM like a 5-year-old who thinks they can drive a car. I’m probably not as excited about driving my car as a five-year-old would be, but I’m probably just as bad at it. In fact, the other day I was just giving myself a pat on the back because I haven’t run into our newly painted garage with my car, and it’s been a whole three weeks since it was painted. And more evidence? Last weekend, I thought I could drive to the dog wash to wash the dog, and I got completely lost. I had to call Pam for help.

That said, I have no idea what this has to do with gay marriage, except that both driving and marriage require licenses. And gay people, including gay parents, can now get a license to be married in Illinois. But while you are there, please take the subway if you have kids. Because driving in Illinois or anywhere is a fantasy, for you, my friends. And also for me.

This probably what 5-year-old driving would look like. Which is scary, but not as scary as a lion in papal regalia.

This probably what a 5-year-old driving would look like. Which is scary, but not as scary as a lion in papal regalia.

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© Sarah Ann Gilbert and Seven Little Mexicans, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Sarah Ann Gilbert and Seven Little Mexicans with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Our irrational wedding, part 1: the dress

We are getting married. I have to keep saying it out loud. And not because I’m at a march on the Capitol and people are watching, but because otherwise it might not happen.

Here’s why: It’s irrational. At least it is according to Cardinal George from the Catholic Church. And I agree, if what he means is planning a wedding is irrational. But for now let’s focus on just one part of the whole irrational venture – the dress. Please help me understand why I would spend thousands of dollars on something lovely and uncomfortable that I will wear for a few hours on only one day of my life?

So here is what I’m thinking. I will get a dress made out of toilet paper. For real. It’s been done. This designer, Carol Touchstone, did it using 20 rolls of toilet paper. And think about how rational it is!!

Once you have the dress on you can't move, because it tears, which is totally fine because I can't move in heels anyway.

Once you have the dress on you can’t move, because it tears, which is totally fine because I can’t move in heels anyway.

1. The materials are inexpensive and freely available.

2. I could get even get recycled toilet paper to make it environmentally friendly, although that would double the price and halve the durability.

3. If (and by “if” I mean “when”) I start crying and sweating freely, I could discreetly blot my eyes, nose, armpits or what-have-you with my veil.

4. The guests could borrow some of my train if we run out TP in the bathrooms.

5. And my kids, who are both potty-trained now, would use up the dress in a matter of days after the wedding.

The only down side might be that if too much of the toilet paper gets “borrowed” while I’m at the actual wedding, I’ll be standing around with just a few squares left, which means I will need to select my underwear very wisely. But this is a lesbian wedding, so people will expect women to be running around in lingerie. Maybe not middle-aged women, but I can hire some catering staff who are older than me and who can also wear lingerie, so I won’t be so obvious. And I’m sure my kids will be perfectly happy to wear underwear and toilet paper, because that is pretty much a normal day around our house.

So, good. We have plan for the dress. And it’s rational. Let me make a quick call to Cardinal George so he can stop worrying about this. He will be so relieved!

badpose

Trying to look just like the model, but modeling is way harder than it looks! But this is probably what I’ll look like at the actual wedding.

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© Sarah Ann Gilbert and Seven Little Mexicans, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Sarah Ann Gilbert and Seven Little Mexicans with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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