I took a recess from writing during this pandemic. My inspiration subsided, having left my last blog post unfinished in the draft box since April:
We decided to postpone our wedding. Maya and I recently made this decision together. We explored our options and chose the one we believed would be best given the current situation. Needless to say, there’s a pandemic going on. A pandemic that has changed lives left and ri…April 14, 2020 at 2:40pm
I didn’t finish the sentence. I stared at the words I just wrote. I was about to tell the world that we were postponing our wedding because of a pandemic. It was starting to sound like I was looking for sympathy. I thought, why would I write about this when the rest of the world is literally grappling with what tomorrow may look like? That afternoon, I closed my laptop and sat outside on the porch steps. Feeling unsettled, I looked along the unusually quiet city street. Moments passed by. Eventually, I reminded myself I hadn’t lost anything or done something selfish. I wasn’t at a crossroads. All I needed to say was, “A celebration can wait”. There is something that matters to me more than a wedding. I am with someone who loves me the way I love them. For that, I can be grateful. Maya and I would honor our commitment in another way.
So that we did. To catch you up to speed, Maya and I joined hands in marriage on June 26, 2020. As many of my returning readers know, this date is special to us for a couple of reasons. On the day I shared my vows and inserted a wedding band on Maya’s ring finger, exactly four years earlier I first laid my eyes on her. Little did I know our world would collide in one of the most intimate of ways. On the day I called Maya my wife for the first time, exactly five years earlier the U.S. Supreme Court struck down all state bans on same-sex marriage, legalizing it in all fifty states in the case Obergefell v. Hodges. For this privilege…to every last fierce activist, we are indebted to you.
Instead of our original plan of an outdoor garden wedding in the middle of the Pennsylvanian forests, we married right at our dining room table in Washington, DC. We chose to marry before our immediate family members via Zoom with two American Sign Language (ASL) interpreters present. We self-officiated by exchanging vows and rings. Following the signing of our DC marriage license, family members shared their best wishes through poetry, music, and stories. To conclude, we showed a video that substituted what would-have-been our first couple’s dance. Instead of dancing, we signed a rehearsed ASL translation of “All of Me” by John Legend.
After our Zoom wedding ceremony, we trotted off to the U.S. Supreme Court for our first snapshots as wife and wife, taken by a beloved friend.
A couple weeks later, like my sister Fiona said, “In a bizarre twist of fate, what started as a small and private joy, has extended into the public sphere with a beautiful recognition of our love and marriage in The New York Times“, titled A Bold Toast That Came True.
As John Legend may say, that’s our imperfectly perfect marriage story.
Have at it.