Note: This is a muiltipart story that focuses in the early part on character development, before it gets to the sexier parts. Bear with it, however, and I promise you will be rewarded in the end.
The sound of breaking glass was muffled by the heavy linen napkins wrapped around each of the wine glasses. As the couple embraced and kissed following their two-glass ceremony, shouts of “Mazel Tov!” were heard around the room. Amanda smiled, and a tear formed in the corner of her eye and rolled down her cheek as she watched them kissing just a few feet away. Before she could dab it with the tissue she had ready in her hand, the tear rolled off her cheek and on to her matron of honor dress.
Amanda had known Ellyn for over 30 years, having grown up with her in a small town in New England. She was about the only person from her childhood that Amanda had stayed in touch with over the years, through college — even though they attended colleges that were hundreds of miles apart — and later, as they became adults, and went out into the workforce. Others she had drifted apart from, but Ellyn had been a constant in her life. Even though they sometimes didn’t see each other for a couple of years, they were always in touch via regular letters and phone calls, and later, through email and IMing. She and Ellyn each would describe their relationship with the other using a term the young girls of today used, as “BFFs” — best friends forever. No topic was off limits, as they shared with each other their problems, questions, triumphs, and tribulations that arose at the various stages of life.
The couple pulled apart from each other and turned to face the audience, both of them smiling broadly. Some people started to clap, but others knew enough not to do so as it would be a serious breach of protocol in the synagogue. Amanda, who though not Jewish was fairly familiar with Jewish traditions because of her long friendship with Ellyn, had nonetheless been briefed by Ellyn’s mother at the rehearsal dinner the night before as to what the ceremony would entail and how she should act.
The couple started back down the aisle, trailed by Ellyn’s young niece and nephew who were performing the role of flower girl and ring bearer. Amanda and the best man followed next, walking slowly arm in arm. Amanda had met Josh for the first time at the rehearsal dinner; he seemed nice enough, a professor like her husband Phil.
When they were discussing the wedding plans, Phil had suggested that Amanda go to the wedding herself, volunteering to stay home with the girls so that Amanda could have a good time without worrying about them. The spring semester was over so it was easy for him to work from home and take care of them while she was gone. “Go ahead, it will be more fun for you,” he had said. After first putting up a fight, Amanda quickly backed down and realized he was right.
As she walked down the aisle, looking at Ellyn’s back, Amanda smiled to herself. She never thought she’d be doing this, seeing Ellyn get married, and she was so happy for her that she finally did. Ellyn had of course been the maid of honor at Amanda’s wedding ten years earlier, and it brought Amanda great pride and pleasure to be able to return the favor. Another tear of joy rolled down her cheek, Amanda quickly reaching up to catch it this time with the balled-up tissue she still had in her hand. As she dabbed at the tear, she glanced discreetly over her shoulder and saw the two sets of parents and the remaining members of the wedding party, the bridesmaids Sue and Angie, following along.
The wedding party climbed into their limos in order to make a beeline for the country club where the reception was to be held. When Ellyn had decided to get married, she had insisted on having a very traditional wedding, with — as she described it — “a big fucking, kick ass party.” She had waited long enough to get married and didn’t want to be denied any of the pleasures associated with the event. Amanda knew that they were rushing in order to have time for the formal wedding pictures to be taken by the photographer at the club. They didn’t want to leave the guests hanging around at the bar too long before the wedding party made their entrance into the club’s ballroom. Luckily it was a beautiful June day in Boston, and the outdoor pictures would likely come out beautifully.
Amanda was in a limo with Josh, Sue, and Angie for the short ride to the country club. She knew Sue, as she too was a childhood friend of Ellyn’s, though Amanda had never been very friendly with her and had only seen her once, at their tenth high school reunion, since their graduation. She was pleasant enough, though, and had seemed to have made a nice life for herself living in the suburbs of Boston with her husband and two young children.
Like Josh, Amanda had just met Angie at the rehearsal dinner, but she knew quite a bit about her. Angie and Ellyn bursa escort had been roommates freshman year in college, and had remained close friends ever since. Somehow, though, Amanda had never had a chance to meet her until this weekend. But Ellyn had told her all about Angie over the years. She was Ellyn’s “wild friend,” the one who took her on adventurous vacations, crazy bar-hopping excursions in Boston, or shopping trips to the funkiest shops in the city. Ellyn often joked about the contrast between Amanda and Angie, reminding Amanda on numerous occasions that “even though your names are so close in the alphabet, you couldn’t be more different — but I love you both!”
When Amanda first heard this, she was a little insulted. She certainly wouldn’t describe herself as “wild,” but she did like to think that she knew how to have a good time. She realized that in part Ellyn drew the contrast between the two of them because of the choices that Amanda had made. She had married Phil, who had been her college sweetheart, right after graduation and she had worked in advertising to support him as he attended graduate school. Toward the end of his doctoral studies they had their first daughter, and three months later, Amanda went back to work. A year later Phil gained a faculty job at a small college in the Midwest, and their second daughter followed two years after that. After this child, Amanda stopped working as they could afford to live in their small town on Phil’s salary alone. So Amanda settled into life as a faculty wife and mother, a role that she very much enjoyed.
Amanda didn’t miss working, focusing her life on supporting Phil and the girls. She didn’t neglect her own needs though, and made sure that she had friends in town with whom she could spend time. She also took vacations with her family, and even managed to get off on her own every now and then to come to Boston to visit Ellyn. But sitting back in the limo and glancing over at Angie, Amanda knew that Ellyn was absolutely right — there was no way you could compare her life with Angie’s.
The limos pulled up to the country club, and the wedding party piled out and assembled on the back lawn for their photographs. Thankfully, the weather was not too warm, nice enough that nobody was complaining as the photographer moved them to and fro in order to get the poses and groupings she wanted.
As she glanced at the other women in their fancy dresses she found herself a little envious. Unlike her, they all were single and even though in their mid-30s, had all maintained a fairly trim figure. She, on the other hand, showed the ravages of being a middle-aged woman who had given birth twice. She still considered herself attractive, but over the course of the two pregnancies had put on a fair amount of weight, some of which had not come off. She was what Ellyn liked to jokingly refer to as “zoftig” or “Rubenesque.” She had very nice curves, large breasts (they didn’t get much smaller after breastfeeding both girls) and a nice round ass, though she had managed to maintain a small waist. Even though she was short, just over five feet tall, she carried the weight pretty well, and she did notice every now and then when she’d get admiring glances from men who obviously appreciated curvy women. Nevertheless, she was still admiring of the thin figures the other women still had.
Everybody was laughing throughout as their pictures were taken, having a great time joking with each other. Just as the ring bearer and flower girl got tired and started pouting that they were hungry and tired of being outside, the photographer proclaimed that she had enough good shots, and the group made their way inside the country club where the rest of the guests had by then arrived and had settled in to enjoy the open bar and hors d’oeuvres.
Everybody but the wedding couple went into the ballroom to join the crowd. The band leader — Ellyn had insisted on a big, 10-piece band, “no stinking DJ at my wedding” she had declared — wrapped up the song they were playing and prepared to announce the newly-married couple to the group.
“Ladies and gentleman,” he began, “please join me in welcoming, for the first time, Ms. Ellyn Stern and Ms. Rachel Groton!” People broke out in applause as Ellyn and her bride made their way into the ballroom, smiles flashing wide, as the band started playing again. As Amanda looked at the two of them, she too smiled, ecstatic at how happy she knew Ellyn was. She chuckled to herself, thinking, “Well, Ellyn’s certainly getting that big Jewish wedding she always wanted, though probably not the one she thought it would be when she was little.”
Ellyn had come out to Amanda when they were in college. Like most girls when they were growing up, each of them had a succession of boyfriends in high school, attending proms and homecoming dances with boys, and doing all the things teenagers do during that stage of their lives. Ellyn never seemed to get very escort bursa serious with any of them, however, and as soon as a boy got serious about her, she’d drop him. Amanda didn’t think too much about it at the time. But later, after Ellyn had gone to college in Boston and discovered a world of sexuality not available to them in the small town in which they had grown up, she explained to her friend that she never really enjoyed being with the boys in high school. She went along, because that’s what everybody did to fit in. In college, though, she got involved in women’s organizations, and quickly realized that she was attracted to women. During her sophomore year she started dating one, and when Amanda visited her that spring, Ellyn introduced the woman to Amanda and came out as a lesbian.
Amanda had accepted the information from Ellyn without judgment. Even though she had attended a small college in a rural area, she had met a handful of women who were out as lesbians, and was perfectly comfortable with them. So it was easy for her to embrace Ellyn and her new lifestyle without it harming their friendship.
After learning this information, Amanda asked Ellyn if she had had a relationship with Angie. After all, they had been roommates freshman year, and Ellyn had told her in a letter early during that year that her roommate was pretty wild, and went on dates with both men and women. But Ellyn had told her, “no,” that while she and Angie were good friends, they had never had a sexual or romantic relationship. But Angie did help ease Ellyn’s transition into being a lesbian, introducing her to other people, organizations, and cultures with whom she would be comfortable connecting.
Throughout college and after, Ellyn had had a number of relationships with women, none lasting more than about six months, until she met Rachel about five years ago. After their first date, Ellyn came home and got on the computer to see if Amanda was online. She found her friend was there, and immediately IMed her:
EllynBos: “Hey, pal!”
MandaMom: “Hiya — how’d it go 2nite?”
EllynBos: “This is the one :)”
MandaMom: “WTF???? How can u tell so fast???”
EllynBos: “I can just tell, trust me”
Sure enough, Ellyn was right. She and Rachel quickly fell in love with each other, and the day that the Supreme Judicial Court in Massachusetts ruled that people of the same sex could legally marry in the state, Ellyn was on the phone to Amanda.
“One year from today,” she said as soon as Amanda answered the phone.
“Well hello to you too. One year from today, what? You goofball,” Amanda replied.
“Rachel and I are getting married, that’s what?”
“Oh my god, that’s great,” Amanda exclaimed, “I was just reading about the ruling online — I’m so happy for you!”
Ellyn responded, “Thanks sweetie, and I’m hoping you’ll be matron of honor.”
Before Amanda could respond in the affirmative, the two of them were crying, Amanda so happy that her friend was finally going to get to have the big wedding she wanted and Ellyn happy that her best friend of 30 years would be there to share it with her.
Amanda looked at Ellyn and Rachel as they shared their first dance. She guessed that many in the audience were probably thinking that “Come on Eileen,” that one-hit wonder by Dexy’s Midnight Runners, was a very strange choice as a first dance. But Amanda knew the two women had chosen it because it was the first song they had ever danced to on that first date five years earlier.
As Amanda laughed at the two women dancing in their dresses — Ellyn’s a more traditional wedding dress, and Rachel’s more of a regular party dress — she sensed someone coming up beside her. She glanced to her right and saw Angie there, also looking at the two women with the same stupid grin plastered on her face.
“Isn’t that a hoot,” Angie said.
Amanda laughed back. “Sure is,” she said, “I gotta admit it’s the first wedding I’ve been to with ‘Come on Eileen’ as the first dance.”
“Yeah,” Angie replied. “Boy, do I remember dancing to this song in the bars back in the 80s though, it was so fucking popular. And god, that video — talking about fucking hot!”
Amanda thought for a moment, trying to remember what the music video for the song was, but she drew a blank.
Angie saw the quizzical look on her face and said, “You don’t remember it? There was this adorable woman with spiky hair worn up in a band, she was wearing denim overalls with nothing on underneath. How could you not remember it? I don’t care if you’re queer or straight, that woman was so fucking hot.”
Amanda laughed. “Sorry, Angie, I just don’t remember it. But I’m sure she was very cute.”
“Well, I remember masturbating to the image of that girl for a long time after that video came out in the early 80s,” Angie said, smiling.
Amanda giggled a little uncomfortably. She wasn’t used to Angie’s “out there” attitude bursa escort bayan quite yet, and while not a prude, wasn’t accustomed to people talking to her about masturbation — especially people she had just met. While she and Ellyn had talked about their respective love lives over the years, they didn’t talk in detail about sex. It was a topic that she wasn’t comfortable talking to anybody about, even Phil. She certainly enjoyed sex and thought her sex life with Phil was pretty good, but she never saw the need to talk about it much.
She saw that Angie was still looking at her and smiling, as if she expected some reaction from her. Amanda didn’t know what to say, so just replied, “Oh.” After she did, she thought to herself, “That was pretty lame, she must think I’m such a dork.” She turned and looked back at Ellyn and Rachel dancing, hoping the moment would pass and Angie would change the subject.
Angie sensed Amanda’s discomfort, and dropped the line of discussion. She too watched the rest of the first dance, and after it was over, turned to Amanda and said, “Okay, maybe we can get some food now.”
Amanda replied, “Great idea, I’m famished!” The two women walked over to one of the large tables set up with canapés, cheeses, and other bite size treats, helped themselves to a small plate, and each piled it high.
“Whadya say we get ourselves a drink and find ourselves someplace to sit and eat this food,” Angie suggested.
“Okay,” Amanda replied, and followed Angie as she headed to the bar. They each got a drink — white wine for Amanda, and a margarita for Angie — and they walked over to a small café table with some chairs around it. The two women put their food and drinks down and sat.
After a few moments of eating, and what to Amanda was somewhat awkward silence, she asked Angie with a smile, “So, how about you — any wedding plans in your future now that it’s legal?”
Angie threw her head back and laughed out loud. “No, not me — I don’t think I’m the marrying type, hon. It was always convenient to be in relationships before, because you never had to deal with the wedding crap, but now it’s thrust upon us just like all the breeder couples out there. Even my mother, who initially wasn’t thrilled 15 years ago to learn her only daughter liked girls, is on my case about it.”
“Yeah, I can understand — if she’s like most mothers, she wants to see her daughter married. But why don’t you think you’re the ‘marrying type’?”
“I dunno,” Angie replied, “I just don’t see myself making that kind of lifelong commitment that marriage requires. I mean, don’t get me wrong — I’ve certainly been in love before, but I just never felt there was one person that I wanted to settle down with and forsake all others for the rest of my life.” She leaned in close to Amanda and said in a faux-conspiratorial tone with a wink, “I like a variety of experiences, if you know what I mean.”
Amanda laughed, and took another sip of her wine. “Well, I guess the important thing is to know what you want, right?”
“Yup, sure is. What about you — you’ve been married for how long now?”
“Phil and I have been married for just over a dozen years.”
“And don’t you ever think about what it might be like with other guys?” Angie asked.
Amanda didn’t have to hesitate in replying. While she was committed to Phil, like any healthy woman, she of course had had her fantasies, most of which involved men other than her husband. “Of course I think about it, Angie, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to act on it,” she said, just a little defensively.
Angie sensed her discomfort. “Okay, okay, I didn’t mean to imply that you were a slut or anything, I was just curious.”
Amanda quickly realized that she had must have come across the wrong way in answering Angie’s query. She softened her tone a bit, and in a lowered voice said to her, “Well, to be truthful, while I’ve never been with anyone else since I met Phil, I do admit that I have been just a bit jealous of the life that Ellyn has led.”
“What do you mean?”
“Well, you know — that she knows how to go out and have a good time, and while I know she’s been faithful to Rachel since they met, I know that she had plenty of changes to ‘sow her wild oats’ so to speak. And I also know that many of those experiences were when she was hanging out with you.”
Angie chuckled, “Yeah, I guess I can be a bad influence on people sometimes.” She shrugged her shoulders and went on, “What can I say? My philosophy in life is carpe diem — you know, like in that Robin Williams movie about the prep school teacher, what was it — oh yeah, the Dead Poets Society.”
Amanda smiled and said, “Yes, I remember that — he was trying to teach his students to ‘seize the day,’ as you never know when it will be your last, or something like that.”
Angie punched Amanda’s shoulder lightly and said, “That’s exactly it — you have to experience life today, don’t put it off until tomorrow.”
Amanda replied, “Well, I guess there is something to be said for that.” Before she could say anything else, the two women heard the band leader calling everyone to their tables to sit down for the meal. Angie said, “Let’s grab another drink before we sit down.”