Last year, DPaul and I got married, because we could. In the September after the state supreme court struck Prop 22, we became one of some 18,000 same-sex couples to be legally wed. It was, if I may say so myself, a lovely affair at the home of our friends in Hillsborough on a lovely, typically San Franciscan Indian summer day. It was in every way perfect to me, right down to the darling cake topper made by my mother, shown above.
We had been “married” before. We first signed up as domestic partners in 1993 in the city of San Francisco, when that was the extent of what was available to us. In 2004, after domestic partnership became a statewide phenomenon, we signed papers anew. In all three cases we stuck to our original date to keep things simple.
Of course, barely six weeks after our wedding, Prop 8 passed, and California gained the dubious honor of being the home of the first-ever case of rights being taken away from American citizens. I was sick with rage; a pit hung in my stomach for weeks.
This year, our first, fifth and 16th anniversary was a little melancholy. If we wanted to reproduce last year’s event, we couldn’t. Not only couldn’t we marry legally anymore, but also our friends who hosted, one of whom presided over our wedding, had relocated to Malta. It all felt so ephemeral, like something had slipped away.
When the news of Maine’s passage of Prop 1 came yesterday, I had a familiar feeling. It didn’t hit as hard as last year. The rage and bewilderment were mitigated by the separation in both miles and months from last year’s affront. Rather, it was, once again, the feeling of something slipping away.