The world changed on June 24, 2011 for me and thousands of New Yorkers when the New York Legislature passed Marriage Equality in the state of New York and Governor Andrew Cuomo signed it into law the same day. The law took effect on July 24, 2011 and the flood of same-sex couples wishing to tie the knot was evident immediately. Watching the legislature pass this law on line from our Hells Kitchen apartment, my then partner of five years turned to me and said, “so you’re going to marry me, right?” Never thinking I would ever have the opportunity to marry the man I love, a rush of emotion overwhelmed me and the march to the alter began.
Many couples waited hours at City Hall to wed which was my now fiancé’s first thought but after being told that we were not worthy of marriage I was determined we have our wedding day. Friends and family gathered to celebrate our legal marriage was now a reality and we needed to show the world we were married. Even though I had been doing events for years I was working a full time corporate job as was my fiancé and he had far less time and interest in coordinating a wedding than I did. Luckily I had already secured a photographer, Jacklyn Greenberg from Jag Studios, www.jagstudios.net.
Jacklyn’s photos spoke to my heart and knew she was the photographer to document your wedding. Luckily Jack connected us with Erica Powel from Ambiance Luxe Weddings, http://ambianceluxe.com who was my right hand during this process. Everyone needs help with a wedding even a gay wedding planner.
It was the fastest fifteen weeks in history as far as I was concerned. Securing the venue, the cake, the food, the music, the invitations, the rings, the clothes and every detail of the reception and staying on budget can be daunting without a plan and a wedding planner to help filter through the thousands of options and vendors. As happens with many couples the “happiest day of your life” soon became the most stressful day of our lives. Several passionate discussions happen during those fifteen weeks. One of the most heated being when my fiancé booked a white limo. He thought white limo for wedding. I thought white limo for prom in the suburbs not Manhattan. Looking back now he was still wrong but if that is the biggest issue in our marriage we’re doing ok.
October 16 soon arrived and the day was amazing. The ceremony was held at Upstairs, the rooftop lounge of The Kimberly Hotel. It was the last warm day that year and everything was amazing. Two Broadway performers sang “Who Will Love Me As I Am” from the Broadway Musical Sideshow. The tears soon came and all I could do was look at my husband. Our family and friends gathered around us to support our union. The exchanging of rings and breaking of glasses now signified to everyone that we were now legally married.
Everyone should be able to know the joy of saying “I DO” and that is why I chose to focus on making sure everyone can have their special day with the person they love. To help people through the huddles and maze of decisions and options, to make it to the other side and have an event that reflects who they are and provides memories that last a lifetime. That is my mission as owner of I DO!