I remember “Rain” came home for lunch that day. The June summer sun was flooding in the windows of my home office and the talking head on CNN was droning otherworldly. “The Supreme Court has ruled in a landmark case, five to four that the fundamental right to marry is guaranteed to same sex couples.”
It felt like all of the air left the room. The shock and the tears and the joy, we stood holding each other for a very long time heaving out the worry that had been mostly unspoken for months. We were married, really married and our state was forced to recognize our marriage whether they liked it or not.
I mean Vermont is lovely but we have a home here, one kid in college and one in high school. We struggle with our budget on home repairs, unexpected kid stuff and life’s ups and down just like any other married couple.
We work and we save and we consume and we love. I’m sure there’s some great poet to quote here and plenty of bad poetry of my own but I have never loved anyone the way that I love Rain. I am overwhelmed with the idea of making her happy. There is just no way in creation that this joy, this passion, this destiny is some sort of abomination, some mental abnormality to be cured.
I wondered what insight I must hold being forced to wait to marry until I was in my fifties. I wondered how past relationships may have been different had we been offered the right. I could write volumes and possibly will about being denied legal action against a partner whose name is on the lease or mortgage.
While there is something psychological about a relationship that you can walk away from more easily versus a marriage feeling solid there are some very real laws and protections offered that insure you don’t lose everything like I have in the past.
So I wonder. Could Mike Pence spend an afternoon with Rain and me, maybe go fishing or have a few beers and watch some football? I mean, I’m sure it would be uncomfortable and I’d probably make some inappropriate jokes. Rain would be all Julia Sugerbaker smiling and preparing the arsenal if he misspoke. Would he feel superior maybe throw the alpha male thing at us or be a total weasel acting like we’re great fun and then joking to Trump later on that he’d rather fuck Bart Simpson’s aunts?
Guaranteed we’d get the “My good friend in college had a gay brother who I loved.” Or, “Love the sinner hate the sin.” Maybe we’d spar over a few bible verses and quote some shell fish abominations. Maybe he’d get drunk and admit to some mutual masturbation with some Boy Scout troop. Or whisper, “You know the lesbian thing doesn’t bother me at all it’s the gay men that I can’t get past.”
Could Mike Pence look me and Rain in the eye and tell us we should go to jail for wanting a marriage license?