GIRL MEETS GIRL
Ikeita Cantu & Carmen Guzman | CANADA
Theirs is the stuff of fairy tales: the good ones; not the scary ones. Girl meets girl. Girl falls in love with girl. Girls live happily ever after.
To better understand their story, you should know that Ikeita Cantú and Carmen Guzmán are both big fans of Hillary Clinton. And so it is not surprising that they met through the Secretary at what one might describe as a DC "power lunch" but which they would describe as the happiest occurrence that would lead to their joy and laughter-filled lives together.
Ikeita, a University of Michigan trained attorney and social worker and Carmen, a University of Michigan grad, as well, found themselves in each other's company at a lunch for then-Senator Clinton and later, on their first date.
Now, what was special about that first date is not only that, in Carmen's eyes, Ikeita was strikingly beautiful, but that their first date occurred on the very birthday of Carmen's beloved departed brother Pedro. Ikeita was the greatest gift Carmen's brother could have ever sent. Ikeita for her part found Carmen to be charming, handsome, and absolutely hilarious!
Given their cultural affinity (Carmen is from Oaxaca, Mexico, and Ikeita is Black Mexican from Texas), their love of music, their intellectual and career parallels and that they both very much value family and faith, it was no surprise that they hit it off famously! Oh and did we mention mutual attraction?
After a wonderful 2 1/2 year courtship -- really a series of first dates (to this day they never dress in the same room in order to surprise one another with their date apparel) -- Ikeita and Carmen knew it was time to wed; to make the same commitment made by their fore bearers to live a devoted, monogamous, respectful and loving life as one.
As the climate in 2009 was very different than today, Ikeita and Carmen chose a venue that had never wavered in its respect for same-sex marriage: Canada, and specifically Nova Scotia.
What began as a ministerial act (marrying for a coveted license that could be used as necessary to visit one another in a hospital, check into hotels without both being present, as self-protection should one perish) blossomed into a meaningful and beautiful wedding.
Again, in order to surprise each other, they both did things to make their wedding day special: Ikeita ordered a broom; Carmen ordered a cake; Ikeita arranged for a religious ceremony; Carmen ordered a bouquet. So what began as two lawyers flying to Canada for a piece of paper became this (see photo):
Marriage made a huge difference to us as a couple. While we were already clearly in love and committed to one another, taking those vows before God, before our Canadian witnesses and that beautiful ocean mattered – it transformed us and our love for one another. We wish and want the transformative power of that ritual to be available to all who want it.
We are thankful for all we have been given. We laugh, love and live in joy daily. We want and seek nothing more than the gift of marriage -- true union and legal recognition of love to be afforded all couples, equally.