June 2019: “Goodridge, Windsor, Obergefell, and All Their Friends”


“It was a stupid thing to ban but Massachusetts finally getting gay weddings in 2004 made a light go off in everyone’s heads here. Suddenly everyone has rainbow stickers and even our conservative synagogue’s new rabbi wanted to officially marry us.”

“And you say that like it’s a bad thing?”

“No, I don’t, thank Goodridge! I like this new world we all have.”

– Shoshanna and Lynn Morgenstern, married in 1994 and legally in 2006.

“Can this be about dinner parties?”

“Don’t be stupid, it totally can.”

“It used to stink being the only unmarried people in the group. I know that some people choose it, but we didn’t have a choice! There were whole conversations we missed out on until we could get married. And then you realize that every group of adults feels like that until you get married.”

“Though it’s funny that being gay married made us feel more at home at church.”

– Bernardo and Scott O’Rourke, married in 2004.

“Ha, you didn’t know me back in the 80’s. Not like I was the only guy to lose my partner, but it’s still the worst thing I had to go through. Then my niece said that it’s better than I didn’t marry Shawn, so we weren’t as close. Excuse me but honey, why? I loved him like a husband and that’s one memory we never got to have. I’m glad I lived to have a second chance at it. If we die in the next five years, there’s a wedding to die remembering. That’s great. I love being an old married man now.”

Marty and Glenn Ellis, married in 2018.

“My dad was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2013, and my heart sunk. We had to go back to Nebraska and I wondered how much of my life was going to be anchored there. What would happen to my marriage? What if I had to work there or take care of my mom afterwards? Nobody stays in one state now.”

– Patrick and Devin Heinz, married in 2012.

“We’re not married yet!”

“But we just saw Robyn and Jhene get married in Arkansas. In Arkansas! Not like we’re moving there but gay people get born in every state. I’m glad to get married now and not before…that court decision…”

“US v Windsor, babe.”

– Dominique Johnson and Cora Barret, to be married in 2020

“No, that one only repealed DOMA,” said Ms. Fields, wedding officiant extraordinaire. “Obergefell gave nationwide marriage rights.”

“Sounds like you know your job,” said Dominique. “Are you making a killing now?”

“Not much more than usual, but I’ve had an enlightening time talking to those I married.” In spite of marriage equality’s more recent legal status, Ms. Fields had been marrying gay couples for decades. It cost her a city clerk job but gained her a lucrative wedding planning and officiant career. And eventually, the tides shifted enough to get her back into City Hall to marry people. She even married many open-minded straight couples who heard about her services. Her weddings were considered inexpensive but heartfelt.

But she had never been married herself. When law was not an issue for it, then finding the right woman was. Even after she met Judy, the years ticked by and Ms. Fields passed 60…and then 65. Judy proposed and she said yes, but Ms. Fields still wasn’t immune to the mental hurdle of being married. She couldn’t even pinpoint why. Even after her tireless defense of same-sex marriage, did she think it was pointless? Maybe. She couldn’t see how her own life would change.

Off to the couples it was, then.

All her favorite couples had advice, and it was like a curtain was lifted. Marty and Glenn were the most right, though; getting married as two old grooms or brides was still worth it. There could be memories and cake. If Ms. Fields had all the legal rights she needed in the world, she still loved those two things too.

It was a warm June 26th, and the fourth anniversary of Obergefell v Hodges. That was a deliberate choice and close to her heart. Ms. Fields would have worn a suit if it wouldn’t make her look like the officiant again. Thankfully a dress kept her cooler for her summer wedding. Planning her own wedding was more difficult than planning for others, but most of the details fell into place.

Ms. Fields invited her favorite couples, who convinced her to join them. But when she saw her officiant–a complete stranger before planning–at the podium, it truly fell into place. In every way, she was no longer alone.


A/N:

Know your court cases! Goodridge v The Department of Public Health is what legalized same-sex marriage in my own state of Massachusetts (not like I remember any of it, I was 10). Your state or country might have a case to look up of their own.

Even better: you can grab my poses used in this story! Provided you’re a TS3 player of course.

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26 thoughts on “June 2019: “Goodridge, Windsor, Obergefell, and All Their Friends”

  1. Pingback: [TS3] Married Officially Poses | fat drunk and stupid is no way to go through life

  2. I loved the popcorning of moments in this story. Such a great way to commemorate what would often be considered boring (legal stuff = boring) but the results from that are awesome!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: Monthly Simlit Short Story Challenge – June 2019 Submissions & Vote – lisabeesims

  4. So profound and so profoundly moving. I’m in tears and shivers. This moved through the history that my life traversed, and I heard the words of friends and family and acquaintances. You nailed the dialogue! And the reference to the 80s and AIDS was chilling. Such an era. I also loved the conflict over the institution of marriage when so many of us in my generation in heterosexual lifetime partnerships, like me, have decided for political, cultural, and personal reasons not to get married. I’ve commented on this before regarding your writing, but you seem to understand and know the cultural tapestry of my generation even better than many of my generation do! This story is significant and significantly beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. But I still needed the young couple at the end so I could truly relate. 😛 Thank you so much Cathy. You ain’t even mad that I ran with the June 26th idea too. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Interesting. I’m afraid I don’t know the court cases in my area at all, but now I’m curious. I like your unique approach to writing this.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. You know… after I wrote my story, I was wondering, “Where did this idea come from?” And I remembered that you’d mentioned the significance of June for same-sex marriage in Lisabee’s thread–so I think, actually, I stole the idea from you! I almost didn’t post–but I figured, heck. It’s too great of a thing! We should all celebrate it! And I started thinking how awesome if all the stories submitted would deal with that same idea! 🙂 So glad that yours did, too.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. So lovely and interesting! I got a bit of a history lesson by reading this. I’m glad Ms. Fields had her special day and the other couples were great as well!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. It was a CHORE to make couples that existed in only two shots (I was NOT making anyone else for a wedding crowd lol) but writing the stories really made me happy when I was bored on vacation.

    Can’t wait to see you back in this contest btw!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I love the collection of vignettes, which I imagine are accounts or somehow connected to real life stories. I am getting familiar with your style over these months and I really do enjoy reading because there is always something completely unique about your approach.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. The interview snippets were wonderful. It felt like reading a transcript of a news special or documentary. Weaving history in and making it interesting isn’t easy, but you pulled it off flawlessly. I love Ms Fields! A lot of times the people who fight and give their all to improve other people’s lives don’t take care of themselves or accept that they deserve the same good things they give to everyone else. I’m glad she realized this and embraced what made her happy.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I loved reading this. I’ll admit it didn’t dawn on me how all these couples were connected and then when you brought it back to Ms. Fields… it was this beautiful tapestry of collective stories being the lamp that lights the way. LOVED it!

    Liked by 1 person

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