Joanna & Diana – a Love Story from Massachussets
We've been together for about three years and we honestly don’t remember how we met. We had many mutual friends and were often in the same spaces at the same times, and we were friends for a few years before we started dating. On our first date, Joanna was supposed to teach Diana how to drive stick shift, but her clutch went out 2 hours before the date. Diana still doesn't know how to drive a manual.
We like adventures and travel, as much as we can squeeze in to our budget and limited vacation days: weekends in the woods, escaping New England winters on cheap flights to somewhere warm, and grander adventures when we can swing it. Closer to home, we love to cook together and for friends, sing goofy made-up songs to our cats, and plot the overthrow of heteropatriarchy.
"Joanna was born and raised in Encinitas, CA, the older sister of twin brothers. There is debate as to whether her first word was "horsey" or "oh shit." As a young person, she was an avid equestrienne, thespian, and rabble rouser for social justice. She made the oft-questioned decision to leave Sunny San Diego, and spent her college years wandering from Olympia, WA to Yellow Springs, OH by way of Israel and Western Europe. She graduated from Antioch College in 2008, and moved to Boston on a whim, because it seemed as good a place as any to go next. She is a queer femme with a penchant for power tools, heeled boots, travel, adventure, and poetry. If given a choice between the power of invisibility or flight, she would always choose to fly."- Diana
"Joanna is my perfect. I look at her at least once every day and feel as if I've won the lottery because this person – this incredibly brilliant, funny, generous, loving, gorgeous person – chose to spend her life with me. I could ask for nothing more." – Diana
Diana was born in Jonesboro, AR, and grew up across the mid-South, in Jonesboro; Tupelo, MS; and Cassville, MO. As a young person, she loved collecting rocks, studying clouds, traveling across the midwest and the south following lady songwriters, and dominating in Lincoln-Douglas Debate. She journeyed to the cold and windy north for college, graduating from the University of Chicago in 2002 before moving to Boston in 2006 for business school at Boston University. She loves boats, archaeology, vegetables, adventure, and lichen. If given a choice between the power of invisibility or flight, she would also choose to fly – but she'd be much more nervous before first take off than Joanna.
"Our officiant picked up on one of the words we both use to describe each other: magic. Diana is someone who pays attention to tiny wonders in the world, and sees magic wherever she goes. She is deeply kind, loving, incredibly smart, and quietly hilarious. She is bookish and nerdy in all of my favorite ways." – Joanna
By early 2015, we knew that we wanted to get married, but, both of us being romantics at heart, Joanna told Diana that she had to "do a thing" to make it official. By April, Diana had an engagement ring but was house-bound with a broken ankle. We went on a New England road trip vacation in July, and Diana had grand plans to propose, all of which were thwarted by aforementioned ankle and an insistence on proposing near a waterfall. By August, Diana had come up with a new plan not dependent on hiking. She recreated one of their early dates with dinner at a favorite seafood restaurant in Boston's North End, and a walk to a dock on the Boston Harbor, where she proposed. Joanna said yes, obvi.
Planning the logistical components of the wedding was sometimes more stressful, but we tried to strike a balance between DIY where we could and hiring/asking for help where we needed to.
The most important thing to us was that the wedding reflected who we are as people – our values and character – and our aspirations for our life together, in terms both philosophical and concrete. Beyond that – good people, good food, good wine, good music.
Any advice we would give to a couple planning a wedding?
– We started, right after we got engaged, by having a lengthy conversation about the things that were important to each of us. We noted where we had overlap, and where we didn't, and as a result we knew up front a lot of places where we'd have to compromise or work through to get to a decision, versus the places where the decisions were more straightforward.
– Make sure you are putting yourselves into the ceremony. There's so much out there about what wedding ceremonies "should" look like, how long they should be, what you should and shouldn't do. Throw all of that out if it doesn't serve you, and remember that the ritual holds the intention for the rest of your lives. Our ceremony was long, by average wedding standards, but guest after guest told us that it was incredibly meaningful – for some, the most meaningful ceremony they'd ever witnessed – and many guests who were already married shared that it reminded them of why they'd married their spouse. Most importantly, it was exactly what we wanted.
– Hire a day-of-coordinator. You can't do it all yourself, and you want your close people available to you, not dealing with chair deliveries or the caterers or whatever else.