After multiple mental run-throughs of our various destination wedding ideas, I started to freak out. Was I cheating myself by simply having a pool-side cocktail party wedding? Was the original “no-stress” virtue of this plan actually a compromise in disguise, slyly cheating me out of my dream wedding? Was I giving up before I had even begun?
I never believed in marriage before Remi. But now, I know with every bone in my body that this marriage … it’s the real deal! A once in a lifetime thing! Our love story is pretty awesome, at least to us and the fact that we’re lesbians, living the American dream only makes it better! I’ve suddenly gone from a “let’s just elope” kind of girl to a “Let’s prove to the world that a lesbian wedding is every bit as important and special as a straight wedding” kind of girl!
I am the last one in my family to get married. Coming from a Mormon family, my youngest cousin who just turned 20, recently married her 19 year old Marine husband! My cousins that are my age have been married for over 10 years now and have children in school! I’ve never felt any competition to get married and I think my entire family gave up on the idea when I came out. Which is even more reason to make our wedding fabulous. I would be lying if I didn’t admit that part of me really wants to prove something with this. I want to show my family and friends (most of whom are heteros) that I haven’t “sacrificed” anything by being gay. I want to show them just how fun and cool it really is!
I know, I know … I shouldn’t get caught up in what others think about our wedding. But I do. I feel like we always have something to prove. I like it when my sister calls and I tell her how we’re doing on the house, or when I told her that Remi bought me my dream Mini, or show her my engagement ring. My sister, while supportive, still slips back into the Bible every once in a while. And I couldn’t help but notice that nothing seems to make it OK that I’m gay, faster then her hearing about our financial security. She’s come to realize that Remi can take care of her little sister every bit as well if not better then any man. I guess money really can buy acceptance, to a certain degree.
When I broke the news to her this was how the conversation went:
Me: “Hey sis, I’m getting married!”
Sis: “To who!? Remi??!!”
Me: “Well duh! Yes to Remi!!!!”
Sis: “Well how’s that going to work?” in a very flat, sarcastic tone.
Me: “Well domestic partnership to start with and if Prop8 gets overturned by then, then a full on legally recognized wedding.”
Sis: “Oh OK. Well … whatever makes you happy. It’s not my place to judge.”
Me: silence …. trying not to let her hear my disappointment through my voice over her reaction. She went on to tell me how, even though it’s wrong in the Bible, life is too short to be miserable and she supports me. She also went on about how much she likes Remi and what a “good, hard worker she is” and that she likes her a lot. My sister’s like this. She thinks it’s wrong that we’re gay, but she’s a “realist” and she knows that I’m better with Remi so she wants me to be happy. Even if it is a sin. She doesn’t judge me ….. haha. I love my sister.
Sis: “So where’s this thing gonna be anyways?” I could be wrong but it sounded to me like there was still a slight mocking tone in her voice. Not a mean one, the same one you might have when talking to a little child about their invisible tea party.
Me: “Oh we were thinking about the so-an-so.” (A pretty fabulous location, I will blog about next)
I hear my sister’s entire attitude about our wedding switch on a dime at hearing of a beautiful venue for our “gay wedding.”
Sis: “Ohhhhhhh!!!!! Reallllllllly?????? …… Wow ….. well …. well …. does this mean I have to wear some ugly taffeta dress or something? When is it going to be? I’ve got to lose some of this weight! I’ve already started a walking program. Oh my, well isn’t this exciting!”
All of a sudden my little invisible tea party got upgraded to a real, full blown wedding in her mind, at the mere mention of a “real venue.” Huh …. funny how that works. She was not alone in this.
One after another, we saw this exact evolution of reaction from our straight loved ones. From cordial smiles to big excitement at the news that our wedding might be held somewhere slightly luxurious or extravagant. Mind you, most weddings in my family are temple weddings with the reception being held in the church gym. I don’t think any of my cousins’ weddings cost more then a $1,000 if that. Mormon weddings are not fancy, they’re utilitarian and since the brides and grooms are usually just out of high school, they’re age appropriate too. So it wasn’t hard to impress them with a “fancy” location and a wedding budget that went beyond a couple hundred buckeroos.
To be honest, it wasn’t that important to impress people with our wedding, until we saw that they could be.
When we started seeing the look of surprise that we, two gay girls, might be throwing a pretty fun wedding that wouldn’t take place in our backyard or someplace else free ….. we liked it. We liked the sudden call to attention … the way it made people sit up and take notice …. the way people went from treating this like a “gay commitment ceremony” that they would merely tolerate in order to patronize the lesbians. To a full on wedding that they started to take seriously. As if to say, “Oh this is a real wedding …. maybe this gay thing isn’t just a phase … maybe Sasha didn’t throw her life away …. maybe …. maybe I should be excited for them …. I wonder if they’re registering anywhere?”
All of this made me start researching possible venues here in Los Angeles where we could throw a bigger wedding then our little desert idea. The Palm Springs thing is still a contender. But I’ve found someplace here in LA that might just work and if it does, then our guest list can double or even triple!
So now we’ve got our BIG FAT GAY WEDDING to plan.