Scott De Buitléir writes a letter to his newly wed friends, and gets more than a little emotional …
Dublin, 10 September 2012
Tom & Eugene,
We were so excited as we gathered together to hear you announce in front of your friends, family and loved ones that you wanted to spend the rest of your lives together. Everyone was in the best of spirits, laughing and chatting and smiling as there was something of pure joy in the air. Some came from only down the road, while others came from as far as America and Germany to be with you.
Despite being late (typical!) you eventually made it and both walked up the aisle, each one with your mothers, as the string quartet played. We all burst into applause, and some burst into tears. It was like cheering athletes at the end of a marathon; you two have been together for so long, and have been through so much together. On that beautiful afternoon, you made it – you won that marathon and we were all there to celebrate your victory.
The ceremony was new to everyone, I think. Not only are we Irish used to Catholic weddings, but a Humanist ceremony for two men meant that no-one’s attention was lost. We were curious to the new symbols for the same good wishes, the vows for the same love and the speeches from the best men, showing the same friendship and support as any other wedding that would’ve been taking place that weekend. The best part – and the part you almost had me in tears – was when you lit a candle to represent your new life together, placed between two candles lit earlier to represent your families.
But your day wasn’t without its sad moments. Shortly after the ceremony, the photos and the rush to the bar, I watched you dance together as the quartet played Down By the Salley Gardens, remembering who couldn’t have been there that day. I’ve no doubt that somewhere, they were celebrating your big day out just as much as we were. If anything, it was probably them who made sure that it didn’t rain on the day (let’s face it, our weather is schizophrenic at the best of times) – so you two were definitely blessed.
After the dinner, drinks and speeches, we all danced together. The flower girls were spun around by two of your friends, who I think one day might just have kids of their own to look after – they’re ready to be fathers. Your family chatted and laughed, and even those who were others’ guests and you hadn’t met until that day quickly learned that although a bit uncommon in our country, what you did today was no different to what most of us are used to. Overall, you can rest assured that everyone who was had a brilliant time.
What you two did over the weekend was a milestone for you, but you have done something that is bigger than the two of you as well. You’ve shown those who came along that love overcomes all, and that is beyond inspiring. Thank you for that.
May you both live a long and happy life together, and may we be lucky enough to see and share that life with you.
PS: Thank God neither of you threw a bouquet. I would’ve embarrassed myself way too easily.