Real Wedding: Jordan & Christina
We recently spoke with Virginia Grauman, an ordained minister based in central New Mexico, who specializes in secular and non-secular wedding celebrations for straight and same-sex couples. She shared her story of Jordan and Christina, whom she married at 9:10 am on 11/12/13 (for your numerology fans out there!).
What made the wedding special? As an officiant, each ceremony I perform is special. However, I would say that this one was exceptionally so because they had to travel from out of state to have a legal ceremony. The state of Texas would not allow them to legally marry. It was also incredibly special because of the many elements of surprise.
The couple had decided to fly out on a Monday, marry on Tuesday morning, and fly back that afternoon. Nothing flashy, just two of them and their witnesses, sealing the deal for which they’d waited several years. Jordan’s mother, Alexis, however, was not content with letting it be anything less than extraordinary. Her love of her daughter (and now daughter-in-law) was so profoundly apparent. I wish the parents of all gay children were so supportive and loving of their children!
In secrecy, Alexis and I plotted to surprise the couple with flowers, chocolates, wine, and a fruit platter. Rose petals were strewn all over the room, and a rose petal heart lay on the bed with the initials ‘J + C’ for Jordan and Christina.
The couple had driven to Albuquerque a month prior to obtain their wedding license. During the same trip, they had spent some time wandering in the foothills of the Sandia Mountains and found what they determined to be the most beautiful place for a ceremony. The morning of 11/12 at precisely 9:10am (9:10… 11/12/13) we revisited this location for their big day. It was a small hike to an elevated, flat surface, where we stood looking over all of Albuquerque, just beneath the Sandia Peak.
I brought with me a folding table, and Alexis brought with her a small bag full of decor to dress it up. Included was a photo of the bride’s late grandparents, beautiful bouquets for each bride, and a bottle of champagne to celebrate the occasion. Alexis also brought her iPad to play special song for the couple during the ceremony. The brides wore bright blue sunglasses (something blue), to add a touch of tradition.
Each of the brides had composed a special poem about their beloved, and we began the ceremony with the sharing of these. The deep love they shared for one another, evident in these very personal, very eloquently stated poems, touched each of us present, leaving not a dry eye amongst us (myself included).
They exchanged vows, exchanged rings, and finally, after years of waiting, I announced them spouses for life. To make light of the moment, I shared that Jordan recalled their first kiss as a couple and told me it was absolutely awful, drawing laughs from everyone. Then I offered them the chance for another first kiss. The first as spouses! It was truly a magical moment.
From here, the couple had to submit their license to the county clerk’s office, and they expected nothing more than that before heading to the airport for their flight home. But once more, mom had a surprise up her sleeve. She had secured the Apothecary Rooftop Lounge of the Hotel Parq Central, where the wedding cake awaited. I had baked the wedding cake myself, knowing that it would be impossible to plan for one otherwise. Her mother dressed it up with flowers and the cake topper. They cut their cake, shared a toast, and to symbolize the eternal commitment they had made, I performed a unity candle ceremony at this intimate reception.
About the author
Virginia Graumann is an ordained minister located in central New Mexico, specializing in secular and non-secular, straight and same-sex celebrations love.