LOVE + MARRIAGE (AND RECOGNITION)

Wowza. Whoa. Holy Moly. (cue exploding confetti cannon) I’ll be processing the emotions I’ve experienced these past few weeks for a very long time. It’s absolutely magical that things unfolded the way they did, after all of these years of feeling, well… like a second-class citizen. When we moved to California in 2008, we experienced a tug-of-war with the government regarding the “allowance” of gay marriage. I remember marching down Market Street with my NOH8 sign after Prop 8 passed that November, winding up in the Castro surrounded by members and supporters of our community. I was so angry, hurt, confused and devastated that a group of people fought, and won, the ability to remove our right to marry. I decided to push those negative feelings aside, and instead to be fueled by the magnetic energy of those around me that day. I remained hopeful for a brighter future and my friends, that future is now! A few short months after we tied the knot in California, federal marriage equality belongs to all of us.

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We travelled back to Cincinnati in late June for a post-nuptial family celebration. We both come from large clans, so we kept it low-key, allowing us to spend quality time with our immediate family members who weren’t with us on our wedding day. It was everything we could have asked for and more, that after sixteen years of partnership + three months of marriage, our union was officially recognized in the state of Ohio WHILE WE WERE THERE TO CELEBRATE IT! SCOTUS could have handed down judgement on this case during one of their earlier session days, so it felt kismet that it happened while we were home, surrounded by the love of our incredible families.

Marriage is not something either one of us has taken lightly, and its been an amazing experience feeling our relationship grow and change with these new titles. Our wedding day was worth waiting for, and as we said “I Do” in San Francisco’s stunning City Hall, all felt right in our world. After our vows, we had a limo take us around the city to some favorite spots, while we sipped champagne and enjoyed one of the most beautiful days I’ve ever seen in this town. We invited a small group of friends to share pizza and beers on our balcony suite at the Fairmont, then lit giant sparklers and ate cupcakes as we all watched the city lights twinkle below.

On our first morning as Mrs. & Mrs., we enjoyed a gourmet brunch on our terrace, as we soaked in the city views for our final hours in what is likely the nicest hotel room we’ll ever set foot in. I am overjoyed that our marriage, and the unions of so many others, are now recognized by the federal government. We’re all protected regardless of which state we happen to be traveling through, and that brings a level of comfort I thought I’d never experience. Sometimes life delights and excites in ways that even in the deepest corners of our hearts + hopes, we still couldn’t image. So, hear, hear! and three cheers to love, marriage and recognition for all.

*Special thanks to Mr. Brian Leckrone for capturing these shots of our wedding day*

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