Two years ago, on this date… well, not really because I’m about 17 hours behind or something, marriage equality was made law in Australia. Time sure does fly. I thought I’d reflect on that a little bit and share a little bit of a story with you about my marriage.
One of the things that my partner and I made clear is that we didn’t want to end up in something that would run its course in a month or two, then fade away. I told him that I was still a little jaded by a certain previous relationship and I think it would take some time for me to come to the realisation that I would ultimately want something long term. I still have an aching feeling of mistrust sometimes and it’s not because of who he is, but what I’ve gone through in that particular relationship.
When we first got together, it was great and I found myself to be pretty happy and wanting to be with or around this person all the time. One of the things we realised is that we attended the same university and so we’d sneak in lunches and things together when we could. I also told him that he’s welcome to stay with me on his early days because he was living about an hour and a half away from the university, whereas I was about 2 or 3 suburbs over from the university.
I guess things were pretty solid. Then, while I was here in the USA, I got a video of him proposing to me (on Valentine’s Day–too predictable if you ask me). I watched it and thought about it for a few days. I told my closest family members and my friends and I had to explain that it was about 8 months after we met and I am a little weirded out about getting married so early.
I eventually said yes, but to buy myself time, I said that we probably should wait a while and test the water a bit before we dive in. That wait ended up being a few years. Because…
I finally realised that I was getting older and who knows if this opportunity of a lifetime would happen again. I think that my family members probably didn’t want to see me alone and well, I didn’t want to be alone. Being single has it perks, but sometimes I just crave someone to lay my head on at night. I also told him that we’d go to New Zealand, where, at the time, same-sex marriage was legal. I started thinking that I don’t have an emotional attachment to NZ, so if I didn’t have to, I wouldn’t do it there. Then, I said we would do it when we go to the USA together. (I time my visits every 3 years now, so it would have been a wait, but at least I could get people to attend.) I know my partner was starting to get a little impatient and I think he was thinking that I was just going to disappear one day. Then, I finally said, let’s do it in Australia if and when it becomes legal. When it does, and we haven’t done it yet, we’ll get married in Australia.
Well, the debates were getting hot and it looked like it was going to happen. I had to have other people surveyed to see whether my relationship was valid enough to get married or not. Well, the Australian people spoke and said ‘yes’. A few months later, we were taking our wedding photos and planning for a very small ceremony in Melbourne.
In July 2017, it happened. And it’s been great. I am so incredibly happy and proud of the man I married and even happier because I got to do it in the country I love. (I love the USA too in its own way, don’t get me wrong, but my life had almost entirely shifted to Australia.)
And so, we’re going on two years of marriage now and about 5 years of being a couple. It’s been a great few years. My mental health is a lot better being with this guy who, strangely is a mental health warrior. Every day I feel so lucky being with someone who I don’t fully ‘get’ all the time, but he’s been an adorable, wonderful guy regardless. I freakin’ love him to bits and can’t wait until he’s here on US soil.
So yes, two years of it being law. I hope anybody who reads this who fought for the right to marry someone of the same sex in Australia knows how extremely thankful I am for the opportunity and for working so incredibly hard to make it happen.