Well, Kelly is married.
The Straightest Girl in the World has been married off.
Ladies and gents, there will never be another one like her.
As I stood for the 7th straight hour in nude-colored spike heels, sinking into a lawn in the blinding July sun, holding a bouquet of white roses and wondering if wedding guests could see the sweat trickling down the backs of my knees, Kelly and Jason were married.
They read vows.
And my shriveled black ashclump of a heart cracked open just long enough to leak out a few tears.
She had done it.
Kelly was married.
This was the moment.
This was the culmination of every daydream; every Barbie and Ken acted-out ceremony where Barbie had a wedding dress made of toilet paper and Ken did dirty things to her molded plastic “area”; every Jason Mraz song Kelly had ever heard in the car and tilted her head thoughtfully towards, saying, “I think I’d like to have this played at my wedding.”
It had all been for this.
She’d wanted this since she was five.
It was beautiful.
I wept openly in the glaring sun.
Not because it was a wedding; not because I love my two friends and they make a great couple; not because I love love and they so obviously adore each other.
I wept for the sheer achievement of it all.
This must be how parents of Olympic gold-winning gymnasts feel.
Apart from maaaybe Kelly’s parents, I had been preparing for this moment, alongside Kelly, for most of my child and adult life.
Longer than anyone else in the crowd by far.
Every ripped out page from Martha Stewart Weddings; every time Kelly made me recite the four C’s of diamonds from memory as we trolled around department stores, trying on fake wedding rings; every episode of Say Yes to the Dress and The Bachelor; every color theme endlessly discussed.
Twenty-three years in the making.
This was my wedding, too.
Maybe as close as I’ll ever get.
Tramps, I don’t know how I feel about marriage, period.
I mean, obviously, I think anyone who wants to get married should be able to get married.
But people ask me and CJ if we’re going to get married all the time.
And I honestly have no idea.
We’ve talked about it.
And we always land on “meh.”
But sweating my ass off there in the sun, it occurred to me how beautiful it is when two people stand in front of everyone they love (or were forced to invite) and swear to always be there for one another.
Now, don’t get me wrong.
I’ve always hated weddings.
The drama. The relatives you don’t want to see. The expense. The self-involvement. The emphasis on your “perfect day.” The stress. The God language. The ring. The gross patriarchal customs. The way-out-of-whack expectations.
Horrible bachelorette parties where girls with very straight, highlighted hair throw fuzzy pink feather boas around their necks and shriek “OMIGOD ew!!” at perfectly respectable strippers while not tipping, ever.
Gag penis presents.
“Naughty” bedroom ideas.
My basic thought on weddings, in the past, has always been ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME WHY WOULD I WANT TO DO THAT EVER????
Now I don’t know.
Kelly and Jason both really looked like it was the happiest day of their lives.
And their wedding was wonderful.
The officiator used the word “partner” at every possible moment.
The word “obey” was never uttered.
The word “God” was never uttered.
Not even once.
But if there is a God, that shining hour felt like where God would be.
I think that’s why everyone cries.
I hobbled into bed with CJ that night, my eyes aglow with something that might have been love and something that might have been several splits of champagne.
Naked under the quilt, with the windows open to the chill night air of Seattle, we talked about the pros of getting married, which, to us, are:
1) Declaration of love.
2) A nice “fuck you” to Republicans and conservative Christians.
3) Presents. There is a Kitchen-Aid mixer with my name on it out there.
4) Families might, at some point in the distant future, begin to acknowledge relationship as “serious.” Maybe.
5) You would get to say “my wife” at parties.
6) A chance to torture friends with your demands.
We talked about the obvious cons:
1) Um, in this country, you’re ‘married’ in New York and ‘domestic partners’ when you cross the state line into Pennsylvania. And that’s fucked.
2) Weddings were created by and for straight people.
We like straight people. But we’re not straight people.
3) Weddings cost money. We don’t have any.
4) Gag gifts aren’t so shocking when a Saturday errand could easily involve shopping for a lightsaber-shaped glass dildo you can freeze and put in the microwave.
5) Hmm. That whole thing about being faithful. What would that exactly…entail? Do we have to do that?
And if we don’t, would that make us “swingers”?
6) You’re engaged in an institution that forever changes how others define you.
In the end, as the champagne wore off and I started to feel queasy, we decided to postpone the discussion while CJ pulled pants on in the dark.
She padded down three flights of stairs to get me a glass of water, bringing back an acidophilus capsule as well.
I sat up and drank the water.
It was a beautiful wedding, we decided, as I finished the water.
CJ led me, by the hand, back down the stairs.
Some women look graceful as swans on their wedding day, sailing sure towards their future, the way they knew they always would.
Some women barf gracefully as swans in the toilets of communal households at three in the morning after said weddings.
CJ was there to hold my hair, and that’s love, too, sluts.
Maybe one day.
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Krista Burton is brand-new to Chicago. An ex-Mormon from Minneapolis, she writes a blog called Effing Dykes (www.effingdykes.blogspot.com), which is about activating your lesbian gaydar. She spends most of her time staring longingly at enormous dogs, riding her shiny orange scooter around town, and trying to bake gluten-free cake that doesn’t taste like gluten-free cake. She’s a staff writer at Groupon, and loves girls, inappropriate footwear, and hip-hop songs with filthy lyrics.