When pigs began to fly

Our winged ungulate

I’ve had a few of requests to re-post the video I made for PW last year when we celebrated our fifth wedding anniversary. While I’m at it, I’ll add some thoughts about the day itself, now that we’ve just celebrated our sixth wedding anniversary (and more than 11 years of being together.)

1) Thanks to PW for marrying me. We tell each other this at least once a day, but it’s one of those things where the words seem really puny in comparison to the depth and breadth of my enormous awe.

PW’s vows to GForce

2)  Thanks to Sheerah, Lulu, and GForce for continuing to hang in there while we take our wild ride through step-parenting. During the wedding ceremony, I made vows to Sheerah and Lulu, and PW made vows to GForce. These vows are every bit as important as the vows PW and I made to each other (PW’s and my vows to each other show up at the end of the video embedded below.) Like any vow, those words continue to be a challenge, a refuge, and a promise, all rolled into one.

Mendelssohn’s “Wedding March” played on kazoos

3) Thanks to our friends TK and G who conducted the ceremony with humor and abiding love for us and for our families. Thank you especially for helping us craft a ceremony that was perfect for us — politically, theologically, liturgically, and personally. The kazoo wedding march to close out the service was inspired!

4) Thanks to our brothers for their impeccable readings. My brother J read one of our all-time favorite e.e. cummings’ poems “i carry your heart with me(i carry it in my heart),” beautifully (and tear-jerkingly) capturing every nuance of that amazing poem.  PW’s brother S read the Dr. Seuss story, “The Sneetches.”  S had suggested “The Sneetches” as a reading early in our wedding planning process, and he was right:  it was sheer perfection.  Anyone out there who is working on putting together a gay marriage ceremony should seriously consider “The Sneetches” as one of your readings. If you don’t know the story, read it. If nothing else, it will give you a good laugh track for the anti-equal marriage arguments.

5) Thanks to PW’s sister J and my best friend M for being our “babes of honor.”  I never had attendants before in my whole life.  A girl could get used to that!

6) Thanks to my pal, then-officemate and wedding planner S for helping me stay sane while we navigated, and quickly abandoned, the wedding industrial complex and for keeping me laughing along the way.

Receiving the blessing

7) Thanks to the minstrels who blessed us with gifts of song. A and L, you assembled an amazing group of singers to set the mood at the beginning with an array of lovely tunes, particularly Bobby McFerrin’s setting of the 23rd Psalm. E, you provided a magical ending with the Aaronic blessing, sung in Hebrew, while everyone surrounded us and laid their hands on us. Everyone should be so lucky to have friends like you.

8) Thanks to our families and friends who have supported each of us along our long road toward finding each other. You are essential chapters in our book of love. Particular thanks to the family and friends who traveled so far — across miles, years, and in some cases political differences — to celebrate with us.  Special thanks to my dad and PW’s brother R for their hilarious and sweet toasts during the ice cream social reception.

9) Thanks to all the family, friends, friends of friends, and complete strangers who celebrated with us by having your own ice cream socials in our honor. We love looking at the pictures of those satellite celebrations. Knowing that we have such an enormous network of love and support makes the tough times more bearable and the good times more enduring.

10) Thanks to Chief Justice Margaret Marshall of the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, for these words in the landmark ruling that proclaimed equal marriage the law of the land in Massachusetts:  “Marriage…bestows enormous private and social advantages on those who choose to marry. Civil marriage is at once a deeply personal commitment to another human being and a highly public celebration of the ideals of mutuality, companionship, intimacy, fidelity, and family…Because it fulfills yearnings for security, safe haven, and connection that express our common humanity, civil marriage is an esteemed institution, and the decision whether and whom to marry is among life’s momentous acts of self-definition.” Those words are still a touchstone for us, and give us hope that one day equal marriage will be the law of the land in every state.

15 responses to “When pigs began to fly

  1. Richard Howard

    Nothin’ like tears and smiles of joy for our Watertown, MA family, celebrating 6/11 years of shared life in all its goodness and mutuality!
    Thanks for the memories, but most of all, for the hope you all spread around so extravagantly!

  2. Bill Bird Jr.

    You know how to make a guy cry! (literal interpretation: I’m a guy an tears ar falling). Love Bill.

  3. My heart is filled with such joy for you and Pam and the grrlllzzz. Your family has been my family’s rock more than you will probably ever know, and I am so grateful for your love. I expands my notion of what is possible.


  4. Happy Anniversary, ladies!

  5. barbara howard

    The memory of the sacramental event is still strong. How we love you all. Happy anniversary and thank you for being part of our lives. Blessings. Mom

  6. Joy, you rock! Your mother was kind enough to re-share your thoughts with me. And, she rocks too. Love you.

  7. Lovely video, pictures & text, happy anniversary. Marriage is truly wonderful when you find the right person.

  8. While looking and listening to this video, I was reminded of a favorite saying, “If there were no music, life would be a mistake.” My life is blessed through Dick and Barbara, and now through your story, I am blessed even more.

  9. I thoroughly enjoyed your story and your video. My life, too, is blessed through Barb and Dick, and although I’ve heard many stories about your family, I feel like I’m getting to know you better through your blog.


  10. Reblogged this on The Crooked Line and commented:

    This is what the United States Supreme Court will be ruling on today.

  11. And “one day” gets closer and closer!

  12. And now, we can really and truly know that so many other couples will enjoy the sacramental aspects of what your family has known. I am grateful our church made this decision last April. I am so grateful to have lived this long. Blessings and more blessings each coming day!

  13. ‘When pigs BEGAN to fly’ — Joy, you are a wordsmith par excellence!

  14. Marcia Bird-Werntz

    May you continue to bless each other’s lives and the lives of all of us who love you for a very long time!

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