I performed my first gay marriage ceremony last night, and I feel really stupid for writing that sentence. What I actually did last night was perform my 33rd wedding ceremony, because there shouldn’t have been any real difference between last night’s wedding and the dozens I’ve officiated in the past. Sadly though, there was, but not in the way that some people might think.
For me, last night’s wedding was everything that I love about a marriage ceremony. There were all the usual jitters and quirks on the part of the not quite married; shaking hands, tears during the vows, nervous laughter, and genuine emotion. There were friends and family anxiously milling about, eager to lend a hand or a bit of of technical expertise. In many ways it was ordinary, yet like most weddings I’ve participated in filled with extraordinary people, which made it all the more endearing to me.
I find wedding energy to be instantly recognizable and always comforting. If a gay wedding was somehow “different” that energy would be too. If anything, the usual wedding energy was even more joyous than it usually is. When you are finally allowed to do what you should have always been allowed to do maybe you are just more appreciative of it? I’ll admit that I very much felt that way we all wandered up to the altar and got things started.
Perhaps it’s a bit naive, but all I really want for most people in the world is for them to be happy. When I see other people finally finding real joy I embrace that. Even people who have been giant assholes to me . . . . well I hope they find their happiness somewhere in their eternal complaining. Life is too short to simply focus on the negative, or to live your life consumed by it. This applies to just about anything, as long as someone’s bliss isn’t harming anyone else, enjoy the sunshine they are sending your way.
I say this because one half of our happy couple’s immediate family chose not to show up or bless their son’s marriage ceremony. That was the thing that made last night’s ceremony different, and really nothing else. There was dancing, cake, clinking glasses, awful music (and I cop to being the DJ), and all the other tropes that make up the wedding experience in the United States. I wasn’t expecting last night’s wedding to be anything different than what it was, I remain baffled why anyone would run away from such simple pleasures.
I’ve never understood any of the so-called objections to gay marriage. Don’t like them? Don’t have one. Think it undermines your god? Well if that’s the case I think your god is weak, and mean, and not just a jackass, but an asshole. Love is love, and one of the greatest mysteries of it is that we don’t always understand it. Don’t quite “get” a particular coupling? You don’t have to, it’s none of your damn business anyways. Just enjoy the happiness.
I don’t often tear up at weddings but last night’s vows got to me. The love at first sight, the light in the darkness, the wholeness that for some of us only truly comes when we join our heart with that of another . . . . I didn’t perform a gay wedding last night I simply officiated a wedding. Love is love, and if some people have trouble accepting that, I hope they are at least able to find the joy that comes with the happiness of others.
(Thank you my friends for letting me be a small part of your special day, I will always cherish the memory, and the unexpectedness of the whole thing.)
And I absolutely despise the title of this article, but I was at a loss as to what call it.