Let me tell you about my best year.
The first weekend in October, 2004 - at the Unofficial Gay Days at Disneyland - I got engaged. That night (which was incredible) marked the beginning of my best year.
In December of that year, I finished all my college classes and graduation paperwork. That spring Becca (who was now my fiancé) and I moved into our own place in Salt Lake City. In May I officially graduated from college - a mere 8 years since I had started my undergraduate adventure in 1997 - and I had the honor of being selected as the Outstanding Senior in Theatre (which meant I got to perform at the graduation ceremony.) That summer, I was cast in my first "professional" acting roll at the Neil Simon Festival. The part was small, and since I was still living and working full time in Salt Lake, the four hour commute was ridiculous, but I got to spend the weekends with one of my very best friends and mentors, and the fledgling company was a hoot to work with.
A couple of weeks before we were supposed to leave for the out-of-the-country wedding we'd been planning (mostly on our own with the help of the internet), Becca came to Cedar to see my show. The better part of the weekend consisted of me and my weekend roomie explaining to Becca what a stage manager does and why she'd be so great at it. By the time we got back to Salt Lake, she had decided that she wanted to go back to school. Three weeks before the wedding, in addition to all the other last minute planning and packing, we were making phone calls and filling out paperwork to get Becca re-admitted to SUU, arranging for financial aid, and looking for a place to live in Cedar City.
The week of the wedding, we moved to Cedar City (I use the term "moved" losely as we had not yet secured housing), and Becca attended the first three days of class before we left for the first leg of our wedding trip. When we got to Vancouver, all of our carefully printed MapQuest directions turned out to be almost completely useless after our wild goose chase to secure a wedding license. We had selected an outdoor spot at the Unitarian Church in Vancouver for our ceremony, and then the day of the wedding - it rained. (However, our Lay Chaplain did recommend a lovely place for dinner after the ceremony, which ended up being perfect.) Before we left the hotel to leave for the church, Becca's mom (who had elected, with the rest of her family, not to attend the ceremony) called to appologize because she felt she had made the wrong choice. The result of the conversation was that both of them were in tears by the end. My parents and brothers were nearly late to the wedding because of delays at the border crossing into Canada. Due to unforeseen circumstances, we spent our wedding night with our best man sleeping on the floor of our hotel room.
And, ya know something? None of that mattered. No small bump in the road (like moving and starting school the same week we got married in another country) could have perturbed my euphoria. Not even the fact that when we returned to Utah our marriage "wouldn't be recognized" (whatever THAT means) gave me a moments pause.
On September 3, 2005, I was legally married to the woman I'd been in love with for years. As far as I was concerned (and still am concerned) it was the perfect ending to the perfect year and the perfect beginning to the perfect rest of my life.