I talked with _dkg_ for quite some time; he's committed to being there with us, but he's politically un-enthused about the institution. At first, my conversation with him felt blocked, and I think it was because we were each trying to make the other feel comfortable: I was saying how great a party it would be, and he was saying how he was very happy for us.
I thought about it a bit and I realized that I really wanted him to be happy about the event and I wanted to check in with him about that. I called him back and told him. He told me about a friend of his (David) who does amazing social activist work: healing the sick [he's a doctor] in the inner city, standing for peace by joining peacekeeper teams in the Middle East (Iraq, even). David is a committed Christian, and would tell you that his actions that we both admire so much are rooted in his faith. But _dkg_ said [I paraphrase] "I am really proud of who David is, but I still have a hard time honoring Jesus for that." He made me present to the idea that I am asking him to do something similar: I want him to honor the partnership, and community that surrounds that partnership between me and boobirdsfly (yes, you out there in the listening can take a bow, you're part of that), and to honor our commitment to that partnership, and to celebrate in our event that joy and happiness. And _dkg_ is committed to joining all those celebrations. But just as David requests that we recognize his faith in Jesus as being at the root of who David is being in the world, I was -- and I am -- asking _dkg_ to honor our upcoming marriage as the recognition of the good thing that we have -- and that we are. The choice to be each others' partners lives at the root of who we are as a couple in this world.
_dkg_ has some excellent reasons to be disillusioned and frustrated with the institution of marriage: it is heteronormative, it is often held up as a one-size-fits-all template, it has historical roots in the treatment of women as property, and many people (especially certain "traditionalists") use it to bundle social contracts that should be negotiable separately. boobirdsfly and I are aware of those things, and we're choosing to create a marriage together anyway.
_dkg_ said "I think higher of marriage because you and boobirdsfly are doing it, not the other way around." I have never been more honored.
boobirdsfly and I spent some more time in planning our wedding, as well. We are really enjoying taking it easy, but spending an hour once or twice a week to be enthusiastic and plan-ful together starting now is a lot more fun than being head-over-heels crazy for the two months before the actual event (currently looks like it'll be early August 2007).
If you read through all this, and you still want the pretty announcement, please make sure I have your snail-mail address -- my email is [the obvious user name] at gmail.com . If you've already sent it to boobirdsfly, you're probably good; she's pretty organized!