Not the way you might think; not in a family pleasing way - in a more 'what's the best move for us both together, with the least amount of hassle now for us, or in the future, to us?'
It's a long story, in leaps and bounds, but it comes to mind this week as we watch a Nation decide if we truly care about individuals, their rights, and our 'exceptionalism', or if we will continue to live in the 21st Century while emulating the 17th. Big days, important hours, exciting times we are living in. No reason not to be bold, and to love.
But, I digress, so let me regress - Susannah and I were set up on a blind date. Truly. Neither one of us really wanted anything to do with it, but we had a then-frustrating and now-blessed friend who wouldn't let go of it. I had had about 5 of the same, shitty, dramatic relationships with some fabulous Goth chicks, but was DONE... as in, done.
Not interested in a relationship, invested in a great group of friends, having a blast, living alone and being fine. Susannah was in her world in the same place through her own experiences. We were done with drama, done with bullshit.
I never wanted to be married - ok, this is going to jump around, I'm just thinking aloud here. As a kid, I had dreams of having a really cool van, all decked out and plush (born in '65, so this is the 70s talking), and maybe a dog or two, but I never saw a spouse, or a house, or any of that. Even when I was an 'adult' and dating, while I was always 'auditioning' my girlfriends for the role of long-term companion, it wasn't about marriage. Just never an important thought for me. Actually, a little sickening.
And, definitely not on my mind when I was in the 'over the relationship thing'... But, after a few accidental meet-ups, and an invite to see one of their shows (they were both in a band, Susannah and her friend) and the audience was safe, so I checked it out.
We finally gave in, and were set up on kind of a pre-date. Really, I was hosting 'game night' at my house, happened every couple of weeks, and our friend told Susannah a lot of folks were coming, but really only she was coming, so that was that. We joked, and played the game of LIFE, and she chose the blue car and two blue pegs - I chose the pink car and two pink pegs. That was good.
We joked about going to see Molly Hatchet on their reunion tour - this was the era of every shitty 70s power band trying to make a comeback, mostly then in ATX at the Back Room - can I get a holla?! We didn't make it, but we went to a movie.
I won't get personal, more than this... suffice to say, we liked each other and kept hanging out.
“We are all a little weird and life’s a little weird, and when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall in mutual weirdness and call it love.”
Theodor Seuss Geisel
American writer, poet, and cartoonist Dr. Seuss.
So, these two folks, both coming from being over it, are into it, and ready to do something about it. She buys a house, I start paying with her. We go to WFM where we go upstairs and raise our right hands and tell the Shift Manager that we consider ourselves bound by the 'Common Law of the State of Texas' and therefore as a union, get her my discount at WFM. The first step.
UT's gonna be a bit harder. Therefore, we go to the Courthouse, and file for a Certificate of Informal Marriage - no Bible, no Justice of the Peace. But, this is Texas - we did have to raise our right hands and affirm, to the best of our knowledge, that we weren't first cousins. God Bless Tejas!
Like I said, that was 20 plus years ago. I've been married 4 times longer than my all of my brother's marriages combined (and if you want to be shocked, I used the apostrophe correctly). For a guy who never planned on it, I'm coming up on half of my life within it. And, it's the single greatest series of events to ever have involved me.
We never had a ceremony; we've never taken vows. We don't have pictures or a dress or a scrapbook... we have each other. We did have a party for our 5th anniversary, for friends and family - kinda like they just paused a long time between the ceremony they missed and the reception we finally had.
I love being in love, loving Susannah and being loved by her. It's the best yoga I've ever experienced.
It sickens me that there are those who only imagine one way to love - one path to union - one 'right way to be'. These are troubling times, when the prejudices of our friends, our families and our neighbors will come to light. When those who believe in "Liberty and Justice For All" will be called forth to overcome those who believe that only means White, Straight, Christian folks.
You see, we are also the anathema - we don't intend to procreate, we aren't going to pro-generate, we're going to be, by choice, childless. Therefore, by the logic, our union is evil since it does not honor that 'god's' plan of man and woman procreating and furthering the species. We're screwing that plan, so to speak.
This brings me a level of happiness, as I support and tribe with those sinners who defy 'traditional marriage values'; and in the long run, I favor expanding into love rather than contracting into fear.
I urge you, don't just change your profile pic on FB - do something real. Engage in a direct, but not aggressive conversation with folks who oppose equality. Find out what they are fearing and speak with love towards it.
Give your love, show your compassion, model the behavior you'd like to see - but always stand up to and confront (respectfully and non-violently) intolerance, hatred and ignorance. We must be the ones to lift them from darkness to light.
For my love, for my life, for the love of my life - I give thanks and praise!