Saturday, June 16, 2012

LGBT Love Story #3

Today's LGBT Love Story, by Kate from CatBirdCraft, is a traditional love story from across the pond...

Crow and I met online on a social network forum called GingerBeer. She contacted me after I had started a thread about Winter Solstice as I was having friends around to make candles; she was writing a short story about a candlemaker. Over two months we chatted online and learnt we had many things in common, especially our shared love of nature. We decided to meet. There was an exhibition about Women Explorers* at the National Portrait Gallery I had seen advertised and was getting a group together to meet up there and we thought it was probably sensible to arrange meeting in a casual setting. Before it happened I got nervous and nearly called it off, when a week before it there was a large meetup of Beeries at a pub near Kings Cross. I was going with some friends and she came with one of hers. The Queen’s Head was packed to the rafters of partying lesbians. I hadn’t even seen a photo of her but I had a mental image of what I thought she looked like. Neither of us wanted to believe we’d found a soulmate but when we did meet it was as if the crowd disappeared and there was only her and I.

She told me that night that one day she would marry me and do you know what? Her saying that didn’t frighten me. But I did laugh. Fast forward nearly a year later and I (had not long moved in) was the one on one knee in the kitchen asking her. Perhaps we would have taken it slower, but my parents had decided to visit the UK (my immediate family all live in Australia) the following summer. Not knowing if we would have the opportunity again for them to be there with us, we decided on a date.

We went to the registry office and the wonderful woman there helped us with arrangements. The place itself is an old Georgian property; we definitely wanted a ceremony to share with our friends. We decided we wanted our outfits along the lines of the Regency period, and as a nod to our Pagan beliefs we got tied on the 1st May and dressed in green. It was an amazing day, my dad proudly walked me down the aisle, and my mother walked just as proudly down with Crow. Our friends packed the room and two of our best friends did readings for us, one was an excerpt from a Gertrude Stein poem ‘21’ and Edward Lear’s magical ‘The Owl and the Pussycat’. Two more friends played Take That’s ‘Rule the World’ on guitar and mandolin for us while we signed the register. Afterwards we all piled back to our garden. One of our friends is Pagan High Priestess, and we had asked her to do a blessing for us. This was done under our rickety old arch, and after it we jumped over the bessom she had blessed. Neither of us could have ever dreamed of such a day, and to all intents and purposes what we had was a wedding. We consider ourselves married and I call Crow my wifebird. Whether or not the government ever recognises this will remain to be seen. I hope it will.

Civil Partnership in the UK is the equivalent of Civil Union and below is taken from Wikipedia about the difference between marriage and Civil Partnership.
“Many supporters of same-sex marriage state that the word 'marriage' matters and that the term 'civil union' (and its equivalents) do not convey the emotional meaning or bring the respect that comes with marriage.”
“In order to counter claims that this is instituting same-sex marriage, government spokespersons emphasised that civil partnership is quite separate from marriage. However, in September 2011, the UK Government announced that Same-Sex Civil Marriage would be legalised, by 2015 at the latest. The future status of civil partnerships is unclear.
Aside from the manner in which couples register and the non-use of the word "marriage", civil partnerships and civil marriages give exactly the same legal rights and operate under the same constrictions and it is not legal to be in both a civil partnership and a marriage at the same time. Nevertheless, some of those in favour of legal same-sex marriage object that civil partnerships fall short of granting equality. They see legal marriage and civil partnerships as artificially segregated institutions, and draw parallels with the racial segregation of the United States' past. Civil partnership ceremonies are prohibited by law from including religious readings, symbols or music, even if the church involved supports such use.”
*The Women Explorers exhibition consisted of one small room with about eight photographs of well-heeled women and a blurb even Wiki would be embarrassed about with so little information. These were surrounded by huge portraits of male explorers painted out on safari. Totally insulting and I’m still annoyed by this.


CrowbirdieBeads said...

Oh...BEAUTY! What a gorgeous photo of the two of you, too! I adore the term "wifebird".

Michelley said...

The tale of how you both met your destiny is incredibly sweet, but your wedding photo is worth thousands of words. You both are beautiful and it radiates most mightily. <3