It’s been almost four years (February 22, 2009) that Ray walked into our lives. Miss ABBA and I were ready to leave the Quad Cities and were just waiting for the right job offer. The one in Idaho Falls, Idaho was not the one.
As fate would have it, if you believe in fate, I stayed for another reason. If you don’t believe in fate, then God had different plans for us.
I am so thrilled with the joy and happiness that Ray and Gretel brought to Miss ABBA’s final three years and I hope that Ray, Gretel, and I have many more years of bliss and happiness.
One year ago today, in the presence of Gretel, my sister, Tammy, my “Mom”, Betty, and Ray’s sister, Cindy, we said, “I do” and were married.
Here is a video of our life together leading up to that big day. And, you know what, we really are “so good together.”
And, if you’re still reading, here are the vows that I helped write for the ceremony:
“Loved ones, Ray and Anthony are honored with your presence to take part in this ceremony. We’re here to witness the close relationship of these two friends — who are already one.
Love is more than the thrill of romance and of being deeply in love. True love is looking in the same direction together and caring about your partner’s happiness as much as your own.
There is love at first sight, but happiness is not something that just happens. It must be created. It is remembering to say I love you. It is at no time taking the other for granted. It is standing together facing the world as one. It is speaking words of appreciation. This union is to appreciate the imperfections in each other and being patient and understanding and having the capacity to forgive and forget.
Ray, do you take Anthony to be your lawfully wedded life partner? Will you promise to love, honor and respect him? Share the good times and achievements as well as the hard times? Keep him in sickness and in sorrow and to be faithful to him always: If so, answer “I do.”
Anthony, do you take Ray to be your lawfully wedded life partner? Will you promise to love, honor and respect him? Share the good times and achievements as well as the hard times? Keep him in sickness and in sorrow and to be faithful to him always: If so, answer “I do.”
Ray, please repeat after me:
I, Raymond Patrick Forsythe, pledge to you, Anthony Gene Peoples, as my friend, my love, and my companion / to love, honor, and cherish / as long as we both shall live.
Anthony, please repeat after me:
I, Anthony Gene Peoples, pledge to you, Raymond Patrick Forsythe, as my friend, my love, and my companion / to love, honor, and cherish / as long as we both shall live.
Let these rings symbolize the devotion and commitment each holds for the other. These rings, given in love, are a testimony to all that bear witness that Ray and Anthony are truly joined together as life partners.
Ray, please place this ring on Anthony’s finger and repeat after me: Take this ring as a sign of my love / and as a symbol of all that we share / of my constant faith and abiding love.
Anthony, please place this ring on Ray’s finger and repeat after me: Take this ring as a sign of my love / and as a symbol of all that we share / of my constant faith and abiding love.
While you are two persons, there is only one life before you. A life not only for Ray & Anthony, but also for Gretel, ABBA, Jackie, & Tiger.
May beauty surround you both in the journey ahead and through all the years and may happiness be your companion and may you be “so good together”.
Inasmuch as you have consented together in marriage, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the laws of the State of Iowa, I now pronounce you life partners. You may now kiss.”
Those were the words we said to each other one year ago.
Ray, happy anniversary. I love you!