We’re getting married tomorrow, when Civil Partnerships can FINALLY become marriages in the UK.

For this I thank :
The campaigners, of every sexuality and none, the gay the straight the bi the queer the trans the questioning the undecided the never-deciding.
Stonewall and the politicians on our side.
The friends of faith who have sorrowed when their faiths campaigned against us legally calling our relationship a marriage.
My parents for their support and love, which I feel despite them being long gone, support which they gave willingly and lovingly, support which they gave when it was hard to do so and when my life was never likely to grant me marriage and a wife.
My parents-in-law, who took longer, and were generous and loving in their kindness to me from the moment they were able.
My siblings who have always given me, their odd little sister, weird little sister, different little sister, their generous love and support and kindness, and who welcomed Shelley from the first.
My sister-in-law Leah, another no longer here, who also took a while to come round and when she did so, did so beautifully.
My cousins and Shelley’s cousins who have given meals and beds and warmth and love (and, yes, Tony, the same teasing that dates back to 1968).
Our 18 nieces and nephews and their partners, our 24 great-nieces and great-nephews, for all the years and for growing up knowing who and how we were – and for welcoming us, as ourselves, open, honest.
Our friends who have been there for us through two cancers, many deaths, too much heartache, and also such great joys and the huge good fortune of having found each other 24 years ago, and who have supported us and loved us through all this, and allowed us to love and support them.
Our godchildren who are a privilege to have in our lives.
I also thank all those many LGBTQ people who cannot yet publicly acknowledge their love, who have to hide, to pretend, who fear for their lives to declare their own truth. We know you exist, we hope you take heart from the changes our societies have made, and know that honesty and openness can happen for you too.
I remember those for whom this came too late – the loving couples where one half died before the legal recognition of their love could be a reality – the lack of title for their relationship makes them no less real, their relationships no less important.
And I thank my wife, the brilliant Shelley Silas, who has been my wife – partner, helpmeet, soul mate – for so long. Tomorrow I will be I proud to be her wife and proud to call her mine.

Whenever I have cancer diagnosed in January, I like to get married on December 10th.
But I think our four marriages (home-made, Civil Registration, Civil Partnership, now marriage) is plenty. (And I’ve done enough of the cancer, so this is it.)
We don’t need witnesses, and we already had the huge party and emotional speeches for our CP.
Tomorrow it will be just us, and a small – huge – legal moment.

Whither thou goest, my darling.

our Civil Partnership shoes, by Sue Ridge
our Civil Partnership shoes, by Sue Ridge