Sorry this has been such a low-volume week here at HitchDied. I blame post-nasal drip, and offer penance in the form of a useful (and bonus: easy for me!) post containing the full script of our wedding ceremony, including vows. I wrote most of this, minus some lines stolen from The Wedding Ceremony Planner (including our transliterations of the Hebrew prayers), some lines stolen from the posted ceremonies of various cyber bridesmaids (I defied my training by not tracking my sources, so if you recognize something here, speak up and I’ll link to you!), the aforepublished marriage equality statement by Scott Ginsberg, and obviously, Collin’s vows by Collin.
The HitchDied Wedding Ceremony, July 16, 2011.
SCOTT: Before we begin this wedding ceremony, please take a moment to silence anything on your person that might ring or buzz and embarrass you horribly. Thank you.
SCOTT: Good evening and welcome to this most awesome wedding of Robin Hitchcock and Collin Diedrich. I am Scott Ginsberg, Collin’s cousin. Robin and Collin have a self-uniting marriage license, which means I don’t really need to be here. All they need to get married is to say they are marrying each other in front of two witnesses. But Robin and Collin chose to be married surrounded by their family and friends, the people who taught them how to love, and why to seek it. Thank you all so much for being here today.
SCOTT: Now we will thank God and ask for blessing on this wedding.
[BECKY and CARRIE walk to table with Kiddush cup.]
Mi Adir el hakol
Mi Baruch el hakol
Mi Gaol el hakol
Hey’ varesh h’hatan v’kallah
Splendor is upon everything
Blessing is upon everything
Who is full of this abundance
Bless this Groom and Bride
[CARRIE brings Kiddush cup to ROBIN and COLLIN; JOHN and JUSTIN approach microphone]
SCOTT: Robin and Collin will now share this wine as their brothers bestow this blessing upon them.
Baruch Ata Adonai
Eloheyne Melech Ha-olam
Borey p’ree ha-gaffen.
Blessed are you, Lord our God
Your presence fills creation
Forming the fruit of the vine.
SCOTT: In addition to sharing this wine as a blessing, Robin and Collin will also be spilling a drop of wine in recognition of those couples who cannot marry. This act honors the couples whose love is true, whose commitment is real, but who are not given the same rights as people as fortunate as Robin and Collin. This is not just a drop of wine, but a drop of hope, that someday soon those couple too will be able to experience this kind of awesomeness.
[ROBIN and COLLIN spill drop of wine and drink cup of wine.]
SCOTT: Robin and Collin asked me to share with you the tale of how they came to this moment. To some of you, this story will be entirely new. Others will have heard it many times, but hopefully you agree it is worth repeating.
At the end of Robin and Collin’s second date, Collin cracked open the fortune cookie on his check tray. It read:
“An Unexpected Relationship Will Become Permanent”
This is unlike most fortune cookie messages, because a) it is actually a fortune instead of some poorly-translated observation and b) it turned out to be true.
Robin and Collin were not planning on meeting the person they would marry on the fateful night of August 23, 2008. Robin was hoping to celebrate Carrie’s birthday and get in one more night of fun before her second year of law school began. Collin was celebrating not only Carrie’s birthday, but his own, because that is how twins work. Embarrassingly, Robin wouldn’t realize that until after Collin had already bought her several drinks.
I’ll skip the other embarrassing parts of this story for the sake of the family in the audience and the dignity of the bride, and fast forward to Robin and Collin beginning a courtship and swiftly falling in love.
Robin told me, “I fell for Collin because he is so genuine; he lives so exuberantly, without any self-consciousness. He is 100% the person he is. And I stayed in love with him because that person is so fun and so kind and so passionate.”
And Collin shared with me these carefully-selected words expressing how Robin won his heart: “Robin is a smartypants, and she’s super sweet, and she makes me laugh all the time. And she puts up with how needy I am and lets me kiss her and squeeze her a lot. And she’s supercute and is the perfect size for spooning.”
Although they have only known each other for a few years, Robin and Collin now cannot imagine being apart. Because they want to spend the rest of their years together, as a family, they marry today.
SCOTT: Before they share their marriage vows, Robin and Collin wish to ask their family and friends to make a vow as well, to continue providing love and support for them in their marriage. Please join me in saying “we do” after I read this vow for Robin and Collin’s family and friends:
As part of the community that surrounds Robin and Collin
Do you promise to offer your love and support to strengthen their marriage
To stand beside them, never between them,
And bless this family created by their union?
ALL: We do!
SCOTT: Robin and Collin, this is the most personal and important time in your ceremony, when you speak directly to each other and make the promises that will guide you through the rest of your lives. Robin and Collin have written their vows to each other and will now share these special words.
ROBIN: Collin, I want to marry you because being in love with you you makes me love everything else in the whole world a little bit more. The joy you take from every second of your life, the total satisfaction you get out of tiny pleasures like kneading StuKitty like dough or sitting in your kitchen chair or waking up next to me. And you’ve been so amazingly, awesomely supportive of me through trials, and me freaking out over tiny little things that do not really count as trials.
Even though I’ve lived through some hard things in my life, I will never feel unfortunate, because I get to marry you. So I vow to love you faithfully for the rest of our lives, to try to support you as much as you support me, and I vow to live joyfully with you.
COLLIN: I’ve thought long and hard about what my vows to you will be and the more I thought about them the harder it was to condense them within our 200 word limit.
I call you more than 200 made up words like CLAMP, FRLINK, PaTINK and SORNT on a regular basis to express how crazy I am about you, so there is no way I can keep
my vows under 200 words. I could spend hours talking about how much I love you and all your little quirky ways but I think all that’s been said before and will be said a million more times over the course of our lives, let alone the next few hours!
The bottom line is this: You, Robin Hitchcock, make me happy! I love being with you. I wake up happy next to you, I’m happy when I come home from work and I
get to squeeze you. I’m happy sleeping next to you. I’m happy just being in the same room as you. You’re basically my happy drug that makes me the obnoxiously smiley
person that I am today. I hope that I can help make you as happy as you make me. I view these vows as my promise to you, and to us, to help us be the happiest couple
we can be over our lifetimes.
I VOW to always be there for you… no matter what! I vow to support you through the really hard times as well as the happy ones. I promise that you will always be
able to lean on me through your depression and your anxiety. I will never let up and we will beat them together. In doing so I vow to help you see what an amazing
person you are even when you are convinced otherwise. I vow to hug you when you need a good squeeze. I vow to kiss you when you need kisses. I vow to be your
mirror whenever you need it… NO MATTER WHAT! I PROMISE. You are my best friend. Cuuns for goods!
SCOTT: Robin and Collin will now exchange rings and say the magic words required by Pennsylvania law to seal their union as a married couple.
[Justin gives Collin rings]
ROBIN: Collin, with this ring, I take you as my husband.
[Robin slides the ring on Collin’s finger]
COLLIN: Robin, with this ring I take you as my wife.
[Collin slides the ring on Robin’s finger]
ROBIN: We’re married!
SCOTT: Following the Jewish tradition, we’ll end this wedding ceremony with the groom stepping on a glass. Collin has subbed in a beaker to represent his passion for science. Robin has made a KFC bet with Collin that he won’t break it.
As Collin steps on the glass, I invite you all to join me in wishing them good luck by shouting out… “Mazel Tov!”
[Justin places wrapped glass in front of Collin, Collin stomps on glass,
Robin or Collin gloats]
ALL: MAZEL TOV!
SCOTT: I now present to you the married couple, Collin Diedrich and Robin Hitchcock
October 7, 2011 at 6:40 pm
AwwwwwwwwwwWWWWWWWWWWWWW. What a great ceremony.
October 8, 2011 at 2:28 am
Robin, thanks for sharing this. It was a beautiful ceremony, funny, and personal, and full of love. I am there virtually raising my glass to you , I hope you always always stay this happy and make each other happy. Also, it was interesting for me to read it because I had never witnessed a jewish ceremony. I love that the community also takes part, with the community vow, and that story about the chinese cookie is amazing. I am big on signs and things like that. (Which totally contradicts my scientific background, but there you go… )
November 4, 2012 at 12:33 pm
I agree that this was a beautiful ceremony and very personal. Please know that this is a only a part of what a Jewish wedding is about. Even as a spiritual minister, I usually incorporate a great deal more.
October 8, 2011 at 7:33 pm
I follow you, but don’t comment often. That was beautiful, personal and traditional. An impressive mix. Very good job.
October 10, 2011 at 5:47 pm
Collin’s vows made me so teary that I am glad I had my office door closed while I ate my lunch.
Pingback: Commentary Track: Our Vows | HitchDied
October 11, 2011 at 12:09 pm
The telling of your story made me get teary. Awwww so much with the cutenesssss!!
July 3, 2013 at 4:52 pm
That was FANTASTIC! My fiance and I are both non-religious Jews who are going to create a self-uniting ceremony in October. Because we’ve never attended a similar ceremony, I appreciate being able to get a glimpse of yours to help me envision how it might go! Mazel tov!
November 25, 2015 at 9:24 am
Thank you for sharing the details of your ceremony! We had a self uniting wedding in Pennsylvania, and it was so helpful to read others’ ceremony recaps when we were in the planning phase. Self uniting was the perfect choice for us, and we were able to blend some traditional elements with some more unique ones. Several of our family members had readings, and it was all incredibly touching and VERY emotional (nearly everyone who read cried… except me, actually… I was too nervous!) In case anyone who reads this is considering self uniting, or could just use a few ideas for secular readings, I posted our full ceremony script on my blog. Feel free to use/tweak/whatever! http://thecraftyesquire.com/2015/11/19/our-self-uniting-wedding-ceremony-script/
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