Four years ago today, we put on gorgeous white dresses, walked down the aisle in front of our family and friends, spoke our vows and exchanged rings. But at that time we were not allowed to use the words “bride” or “wife” in our vows or refer to the commitment we were making as a “marriage”. Instead, we entered into a civil partnership, something which closely resembled civil marriage in all but name. Some people might have waited until full equality had been achieved before taking that step, but we were eager to start a family together and wanted to do so from a place of commitment publically declared and legally bound.
On 29th March 2014, the first same sex marriages finally took place in this country and then on 10th December 2014, it became legal to convert a civil partnership into a civil marriage.
We contemplated having a big party to celebrate finally being able to truly say we were married, but priorities change and – as I’m sure those who were there on the day will agree – nothing could ever begin to match the delight of our wedding day.
Instead, today we have visited our local Registry Office to fill out the paperwork and are headed back to our wedding venue for delicious food and relaxing spa treatments.
The four years we have been civil partnered have been amazing. We have continued to grow and learn about each other and ourselves. We have been through the struggles of raising newborn twins and enjoyed first steps, first words and watching our children’s personalities blossom. It hasn’t always been easy and it hasn’t always been sunshine and rainbows but I can definitely say that our relationship is stronger now than it has ever been, even whilst it has changed to accommodate the presence of two other people in our lives.
Marriage isn’t stationary; it’s a constantly moving and growing thing. It ebbs and flows, reaches pinnacles and nadirs. It is constantly teaching us more about each other and ourselves and I wouldn’t want it any other way. We are human, we fall, but I wouldn’t want anyone else there to pick me up again.
So, if you would like to, please raise a glass to us and our marriage – four years in the making!