This week I interviewed an absolute gem of a couple, Maple and Sloane.
These two have been through SO much together and you can tell that their love is SO real. Here, they discuss not only their relationship story, but dive deep into what their elopement experience was like and discuss why it could be a really great option for other queer couples.
The intro and all instrumentals were written, sung and recorded by @JaynaDavisMusic
All right. Clearly, beloved, welcome. We are here today with Maple and Sloan, and I am Anna, your host, and I'm super excited to have these two these two modeled for me at a workshop I did last May. And they were, by far everyone's favorite couple, like people could not stop talking about this little picnic setup we did with them. And Sloan brought a sword. To the shoot, which was so epic and yeah. Yeah. So these two are amazing and I'm really excited and grateful to have you to hear. So if you wouldn't mind introducing yourself, sharing your pronouns, any identities that are important to you, that'd be awesome. You want me to go first? Go ahead. Yeah. All right. I am maple maple, like the tree. I always have to like, make sure people understand that. I use she her pronouns. I think the other only other like identity that I feel really strongly about, I do feel really strongly about like my identity as a lesbian and how much comfort, like having that identity has brought me. Yeah. My name is Sloan. I use they them pronouns and same, I think I have pretty much landed in lesbian as a gendered lesbian as a sexuality. So love that intersection of. Of that kind of experience. Yeah. That's awesome. Just a bunch of lesbians hanging out. Yeah. Yeah. The best kind of listening material. Yeah. Oh, awesome. I was wondering if you, I know you shared some with me last May, but of course we're trying to get everybody to get to know you two a little bit more. So could you share a little bit about how you met and that first part of your story? You're never gonna believe it. it was really at the root of things on Tumblr, our Lord and Savior Tumblr. But really the crux of it was that we both played a d and d game on a multi continental group. Yeah. We had people from all over, like surrounding one person's like friend group. Cuz we weren't, we didn't each, we didn't know each other at all at the time, but we both wanted to play this d and d game. And so literally the first time we met was introducing our characters and as d and d games go, The actual campaign fell off after two sessions because just it was, we just couldn't get everyone back together again. But me and you just kept talking. We were like, what if our characters were in love? What if our characters dated, oh, What if we played with our Barbies and made them kiss? What if, do you think this is romantic? I think it's romantic. It was very much yeah, we would stay up until 5:00 AM just like talking about these characters in different situations. And then also like of course about each other. And we got like very close. Very quickly. Yeah, and it like I was in Minnesota, the United States. And you were in Ontario, Canada. Yeah, I was in Ontario, Canada. So not a huge time difference either. I think we had an hour. Big land difference, not a big time difference. Yeah. And then, yeah, we dated for long distance for five years. No. Okay. We can't go through this because we just had to put our relationship on a timeline for our immigration purposes. And we have a whiteboard that was like laid out with but when did we do this? Was it two, 2016? Because I don't, when did I take the train to see you? Very much. Charlie, Kelly, like the Pepe. Sylvia, like trying to lay out when all these things happen. Bloodshot eyes. Yeah. We're pulling up photos on Instagram, trying to use the geotags to figure out where we were. That's actually insane because it's like sometimes I literally can't remember like what? Had for breakfast, let alone like trying to remember something I did with my partner two weeks ago. Yeah, like it was so difficult putting it all in a timeline. Cause like I remember events, but you had years completely off Exactly like I had years like just com switched. I knew that like we vaguely would see each other two times a year. Usually one in the summer and one in the winter. And for about a week. For about a week. And trying to put all of the events I had remembered in those timelines. in the correct order. was so difficult. Yeah. I literally had to look up like very old accounts that I have not used in five years to try to find pictures. Yeah. Dang. That's so sad too though. Like only a week, twice a year. That's right. Both very sad, but also like very awesome that you two, were so in love that you made it through that time. And I think like it wasn't as difficult as people who start in a close, like physically close relationship and then have to go long distance because we just genuinely enjoyed each other's text conversations so much that we like, this is fantastic. I love this and I want this to continue. And then being in person was just like another level up. That was, it was a special treat. Yeah. Our in-person time was special treat, but because it all started online, it was a, it was like a lot easier to deal with because that was just the norm. I didn't have any kind of sense of loss of moving away from somebody. And then we just got closer and closer as we grew our lives closer together. So cute. Thank you. Yeah. Can you share a little bit about that first time you met each other in person? Cuz I had to imagine like that first time was a little bit different than the rest. It was, I, it was the first time that I ever crossed an international border. because Sloan came to visit me in my hometown in Canada. Cause I think my parents were away for the week, so we would've had the house to ourselves and I wasn't completely out to my parents at that time and I definitely didn't tell them I was dating you. How old were we at that point? How old were we father? We were at least, I think I was at least 20. Yeah, you were at least 20, so I would've been like 23. Yeah. Does that sound right? That seems right. Yeah. And I had crossed the border so stressful immediately after I crossed the border, torrential rain, couldn't see anything on the road. And then I finally, we got there and I was so excited that I'd picked you up and spun you around and then had to like, run around the yard real quick and then come back and be like, hi, We were like super, super excited. Yeah. I remember just like standing in my backyard and being like, I just re I really wanna show you like my garden. Yeah. I don't know. I was really obsessed with that fact of showing you like my garden in person. before we went inside, before we kissed, like all that stress, I was like, I need to show you my garden. Look at this and tell me it's cute. I grew these. Do you like them? I was like, yes. I like them. That's so wholesome. Picking me up and spinning me a lot. I think just the being able to physically touch you was just like revolutionary. Yeah. I don't think we like stopped touching each other. Like the whole, yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Were you too nervous at all or was it all just like excited butterflies? I was definitely nervous. I was mostly nervous that something would go wrong. And delay it even more cuz that was so immensely frustrating. Trying to just get all the details in order. But I also have a lot of internet. Personal safety guidelines for myself. So I was like, I know she's real. I know that I have an out If something goes horribly wrong. Yeah. I've got the safety plan. Just in case you had a safety plan, did you think I was gonna murder you? No. Cause I was like, I know you're like a hundred pounds. I'll just lift you up and throw you in the river if have you like threatened me or something. But I was like, I have a car. I can just, oh, we gotta add something new to the timeline. This is something that Maple didn't know. I didn't know that. I didn't know that you had an out plan. It wasn't like fully for No, I know. I'm kidding. I'm kidding. It is a good internet safety thing whenever you are meeting someone to have an outlet. Yeah. I didn't think about that at all. Oh, I was just excited to see you. Yeah, I think, at that point we were we had confirmed identities in so many ways that it wasn't really because I, we started. Dating officially. We met in like August of a year. Yeah. And then we were like dating in April of the next year. And then we met in August. Yeah. Ish. August. Yes. August seems right. Yeah. We had a good year, about a year to get to know each other. Yeah, that is so I can't even be asking you questions about this cuz my current partner, we met on an app and I was not out remotely. So I met her in the middle of nowhere, essentially and didn't tell anyone where I was. So you two definitely had the right protocol? yeah. I did like to my family. I was like, I'm visiting a friend Just cause ok. I think it would be really hard for them to not suspect, but I'm like, I'm still very that's none of your business. If I happen to mention it, that's fine. But yeah, that's a privilege, not a right to know who I'm married to. Yeah. Cool. So Maple, you said you weren't out and you were at your parents' place. Yes. Is that like how did that go? My parents were actually away for the week. Oh. So I timed it perfectly because also my house is PR was pretty small, so just having more people in the house was always really difficult. And it wasn't like I was always pretty sure my parents would be accepting and all that sort of stuff. It was just a conversation that. Wasn't really ready to have with them because you also came to terms with that like much later than other people. Yeah. Not obviously there's lots of people who realize in their fifties and sixties, but yeah, it took like a long time just to feel comfortable in my identity and I was still really just figuring things out and yeah. I, for some reason did not feel like I wanted to have that conversation until I was like completely comfortable in where I was at that time. So I think, yeah, like for the first two years you had very like passing interactions with my family. like they knew that you were someone important to me and my Oh, did I ever tell you My dad was just like, Hey, we like Sloan. Whatever you wanna do is okay. Really Yeah. Oh, that's so good. Yay. Yeah. And. So yeah. You really didn't have any full interactions with them. For a long time. They just knew you in passing. Because every time either, if I was coming to Canada, it was usually lining up with, like you said, other people being out of the house. so that we weren't all underfoot of each other. Or we would rent a place. Yeah. And we rented a few places so that we could Yeah. Just to have like space to ourselves. Too. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. And then what about for you Sloan? What was, did people know you were going to visit a partner or I think I am. in a pretty classic, like Lutheran, we don't talk about things that I like. It's not like repressive, but it's very repressed. yeah. So I'm also just more of a private person about that because of my own relationship with it. Trying to explain my relationship with my own gender and sexuality to somebody who doesn't even have the basics to understand that there are nuances would be exhausting. Mostly I keep it to like, at that time it was really just, The way I explained it was that I was visiting somebody who was really important to me and we met online and I knew that she was safe and we were really good friends and we had the chance to go on vacation. Cuz it was always like, yeah, I'm going on vacation cause I have somebody to stay with. And then like to somebody who I trusted more, I'd be like, and also we're dating and it wasn't like I was scared other people found out or anything, but it was really just a yeah. And like sometimes you just have to weigh the cost benefit of having that conversation with someone you don't really care about. Like the emotional labor of going through it over and over again. And have that conversation when I'm just like, in passing to this person. Them just being like, oh, you two are such cute friends or something. And you having to be like all the time. All right. Even within the last month? Yes. Our, so I don't know what it is with our apartment, they do inspections on our apartment every six months. And so one time you were, I think you were working from home, so you like came and saw like our landlord lady and I was like walking with her to do the inspection and there are so many photos of us on the wall kissing in wedding outfits. Like we have a painted portrait of us. Yeah. like we've got all this sort of stuff. There's photos, there's paintings of naked women. It's Oh yeah. When you look at it, we have a wall of occult iconography in the entryway. Like it is a gay house. Yeah. Yeah. But my. Our like property manager, whatever she is. When she was saying like, goodbye, she's until your roommate, I said, bye. I was like, you saw the one bed you know there's a king size bed. You're standing facing a picture of us kissing Hey, sh if we're, yeah. At that point I was like, I'm just not gonna have that conversation with you cause I want you out of my apartment for you to leave That's so bad. I don't at that point wish she just may be like, oh, I don't wanna make them feel uncomfortable. It's also like you are very clear, very comfortable Yeah. To give her like the most benefit of a doubt possible. Sh maybe she didn't want to assume, but based on the data available, it's a pretty easy assumption. Yeah. It's different if you're like out in public versus in someone's home where you can see oh gosh. Yeah. Very easy. Like whenever we need just to especially with safety as a thing or not wanting to put in the effort, we can just be like yeah. We're very privileged in that because it's, I feel like you don't read as no, like people don't tend to assume that you're some kind of dyke even though you really give off gay vibes to the right people. Yeah. But to straight people, they very much think that I am Right. Just a straight person. because, yeah, I don't, especially with the rise of the E girl phenomenon, since you have like more unique hair that's associated with that. you're, it's fallen off. No, I mean you, it's definitely not as popular anymore, but I think that gave this cultural idea that is not quite as associated with ok. Non straightness. You straightness? Yeah. It's a, oh, go ahead. Oh no I just said I very much like two straight people. They assume I am straight. Oh. And I, yeah. It's a confirmation bias of people see what they wanna see. So if they're not used to seeing gay people, they see a straight person That's a very good way to put it. Cuz I was just gonna say it is, a privilege in some regards, but also it's the amount of weddings that like I've been to in shot where Two groomsmen, just assume that I'm straight and won't stop hitting on me. It's no, that's not in that Then that scenario this is not a privilege at all. Get away from me. Yeah. I am not for you, Yeah. This is the wrong audience. Okay. Awesome. So you two your intricacies. Yes. Yeah. So you two did long distance for quite some time. Let's kind of transition into you started to realize a little bit more serious. Tell us about the proposal situ. drawn out. very drawn out. So I think we had many conversations very early on, even when we were still long distance that we wanted to be together, we did a lot of long term, we did a lot of life planning and like what would you like? What would I like? Are these gonna mesh? And when we started developing like a five year life plan of what we wanted we were like, okay, we need to cohabitate for a little bit and live together to make sure that we can handle living too together. Yeah. Because it's a very different thing. And if you went through all the work to come to the United States for an amount of time, and it turned out that we didn't like each other, we both were like, I don't want that for any of, for either of. we would've understand what was going on. Yeah. Because it is even though we had a very solid relationship, all of our interactions were very condensed into two or three weeks. And they're usually obviously cov colored by like the euphoria of just seeing each other. Oh yeah. And because like we wouldn't be working those weeks, we would just be going out and having fun and it wasn't really a daily life kind of situation. So we really wanted to make sure that before I moved here, we could cohabitate and we could do that daily life together. Yeah. That we could be life partners instead of just like vacation partners. Yeah. which was what we were aiming towards. Yeah. So I came and stayed in the states. Four or five months, I think about four. Four months. Yeah. And during that time it, you were working and then we also moved into a new apartment together. So we speed run moving together. Yeah, we did. We were like, okay, what's the most stressful thing we can do? Moved into a character three floor apartment walkup in the heat of summer and it's also raining So we did that and afterwards I was like, okay, I still love you. Yeah. That was a very stressful situation and I'm still excited to be here with you And then I also didn't get to see you as much cuz you were working night shifts. I was working at that time, 12 hour shifts from six, that, at that Oh that was right when I, that was actually night shift, 10 hour shifts. So from two, from 2:00 PM No, 4:00 PM to 2:00 AM Oof. Yeah. On a manual labor job. So yeah. And then I adapted to your sleep schedule. So we like didn't Yeah, we didn't see the sun and it was just an insanely stressful situation. But at the end of it I was like, I don't wanna leave. I'm not ready to leave. Even though this four months objectively sucked, I You hate it could, it wasn't that bad. You played a lot of Sky. I played a lot of Sky Room. I had the Good Sky Room. perfect. I was still like very excited to be with you every day. Yeah. So it felt solid that I was actually gonna start taking the steps to move here and go to school here and all that. That's, yeah. Started looking at immigration stuff. Cause that's always the next thing. Yeah. So wow. That's just such a, oh, go ahead. Sorry. The question was about proposals. Oh yeah. I forgot. I think that we had a lot of Many casual proposals over several years actually, because it was never a pop the question type of thing. It was always an ongoing conversation for us. just because we talk about what we want so often. So I given you probably six or seven rings now. Yeah. Oh, because you keep getting excited to propose. Yeah. So I would come up with, that was really And one time I mailed you some, cause I was like, I think you'd like these Yeah. Oh, that's gonna be like a record of some kind. Like Summit proposal And the one time I like, we were like, oh, let's, because we both agreed, we were like, we both want to propose. like we both wanna do something for each other. And then I haven't gotten to do anything because you just keep proposing, you keep stealing all of them. That's on you. That's on you Yeah. Thanks. So I think like the official. Proposal, if we call it like the last one that has happened and the one that felt like official was the spring after I had moved to the states permanently. So 2021 for immigration purposes temporarily. Yes. Cause you're a non-immigrant. Officially. Temporarily. But yeah, for long term. For long term, I had been here long term and we had been living together long term and we knew that this was going to be, and we feasible. We had been talking about when we wanted to get married in the immediate future. So we, it was the spring and we. You said you didn't plan the day. No. You no, the rings arrived the day. Okay. You're getting ahead of yourself because this makes you look so bad No, I think it's so cute. We, I think you had just done either an exam or you had finished something. Yeah, I had finished, done something. You asked to do something to celebrate and to celebrate. We went out and volunteered with a tree planting organization. Oh, that is, is so awesome. So we planted a bunch of trees and then we got home and we were trying to figure out what to do next, and I had to sign for a package all of a sudden. and I was like, oh, okay, thanks. And I went to the bedroom trying to be very subtle and wasn't very subtle. You weren't very subtle at all. I think I straight up tried to tell you it was like a sex toy or something to throw you off the trail. But you went to the bedroom and opened this package and then immediately came in. I was like, let's go on a picnic. You should dress cute. I wanna take some pictures of you, I was too excited so discreet. We went so discreet. I was like, why are you asking me to get dressed up Cute all of a sudden. Okay. I as if I haven't done that before. That's true. You have But the getting the package Yeah. That I was not allowed to see. It was a very small package. You immediately went to the bedroom, came out, told me to get dressed. Cute. I should have took me to get my favorite food. And then we went to one of the state parks around here, Carley State Park, where because of the time of year, the blue bells were blooming and they really only bloomed for two or three weeks. Oh my God. And at Carley State Park, they just cover the forest floor, like they are just all over the place. So I think it's like the valley of the blue bells or something. Yeah, it's so pretty. We like had a little walk and then sat down and ate. And you started like setting up the camera being like, I just, I'm trying to like figure, figure this out. Like I need to get, can you just stand right there? Just so I can frame the camera right. And then you went over to the backpack and pretended to take a snack of something, but obviously we're hiding something in your hand. Oh, my And so I knew it was coming, but I was still super excited. I remember like feeling like my heart beating really fast and leaning against this cool fallen tree and realizing that you were absolutely like video recording on the camera. I remember like watching the video, all I'm saying is for real. This time for real. Oh, do you still have that? We do. Yeah. Yeah. It, I am some, I am very easily embarrassed by my own actions, so I can't watch it but it's there in case that ever changes. Yeah. So we had that and then we started actually wedding planning Yeah. After that. So that was probably the most, the final pre-wet proposal. There will probably be some post wedding proposals. Yeah. Some reaffirmation. Yeah. That's actually, I actually love that idea because ho there's that phrase that gets thrown around. I'll be like, it's about the wedding, not the marriage. And, similar things like, I feel like that's actually really important to remind each other that you're like, Hey, I'm still in it. I'm still committed. I really like that. Yeah. Yeah. Like we've talked about maybe doing like some recommitment ceremonies in the future. because we eloped the first year, right? Yeah. And then we had an actual wedding the year afterwards. It was a vow renewal. Vow renewal, And I think we've talked about maybe doing something similar like for each anniversary, but obviously smaller, so we don't have to keep putting in that money. We're also just a fan of like rituals of commitment. Yeah. We do those a lot anyways, so it's something that's really enjoyable for us. That's super sweet. Yeah. I wanna hear about your, I wanna hear about the elop itself, and then I'm curious too to hear about what those conversations were like as far as how you landed there. I think we really, honestly, part of it was stress around Maple's Insurance. Yeah. As a non-immigrant US living person, because I had some insurance that I had paid for out of pocket, but it was not very good. And then the first year we had an incident where I was injured. Sloan hurt. Sloan popped my kneecap off on my birthday It was literally, and so that a freak accident. It was such a freak accident type of thing. And every year you I am overcome with guilt. Yeah. Oh. And so obviously the bills for that were very scary. So that kind of flavored all of the conversations around like getting legally married, because I was like I really need the benefits of a legal marriage. to you. As much as I wish it was just about and I think that we had so many conversations about it that we Yeah. Got tired of having the conversations about it. So it was just time to do it. So we decided that we would actually get married before the end of the year, that year. So we didn't even make it six months, I think before we, between proposal and marriage. Yeah. We did proposal and then we got married October 15th. you said you've been to Rochester? We got married at Quarry Hill. Okay. The nature center there, we were actually going to rent like one of the areas, but I guess they don't rent the building that we wanted out. So literally one, we snuck in. Not into the building, but like into a certain part of the forest. Snuck is a strong word, Uck, but we didn't be strong word. We weren't secretive. It wasn't like, it wasn't against the rules or anything. We did not have permission though. There was no sort of asking first. It was definitely a ask for forgiveness. Not permission, but it's a public park. Yeah, it's a public park. And so I had one best friend fly out as a witness and you have your friend play played as a witness. And then we had my, our other friend get ordained or get ordained to officiate for us. And so we just had, yeah, the five of us, we didn't trust anybody who didn't know us personally to do. Yeah. Like the right. Kind of thing we were looking for. I was like, I don't want this to be a thing where we have to explain our, how we feel about each other. we wanted somebody who knew us personally, so we asked a friend to get ordained for us. They were able to do that and they, we snuck into Corey Hill in this public park. We found a location by this huge tree, huge oak tree. Really big oak tree. It's got a cleared circle around it with some benches. So we had like arch circle, arch that we had decorated with flowers and chiffon. And then we both had like nice clothes on. We had the area decorated a little bit just with some. One little handheld speaker for music. And it was never like we saw each other the day bef like the day getting ready. We got ready together. We got ready together. Yeah. We picked out our outfits together. You did my makeup, I did your makeup. Like it was all very, we were together for the whole day. Like everyone involved in the wedding was together for the whole day. Which I really, because it was five, I really liked that. Yeah. It was five people total. We all got in the same car to go. It felt like going to prom. It did. It felt like gonna prom. Cause we were all crowded into one car. It felt like prom. Like we had a nice brunch and we went, did our ceremony like 20 minutes or so. Took a bunch of pictures and then went to cul. It. It started as a joke, but they had actually, it started as a joke to go to Culver's. They had announced a novelty burger based on cheese curds called the K burger. And the whole day we had all been joking that wouldn't it be funny if we got this? Wouldn't it be funny if we got it? And then we signed our marriage license while eating K Burger because which we were hungry, like we went in our wedding like dresses which I've prepared a photo of for our immigration documents with the caption, the couple eating a K burger, following their elopement, That's some real love right there. Like they can't argue with that No. And then for our vow renewal, we had Culvers after we did we Skype the workers at that location were absolutely like they were entranced by it. Yeah. Enchanted by our continued Culvers. Love Yeah. They're like, all right, you do you Uhhuh We got free. He gave us a custard. Yeah, we got free Culvers custard for that. That's there should Uhhuh There was like a lifetime employee there and he was so touched by our tail of Love Aw. Honestly, people should just wear their wedding attire out more oftens the amount of free stuff you get. Amazing. Yeah. Uhhuh. Yeah. For our vow renewal we went bigger with the vow renewal. It was important to me to have a. Event where I was able, like I am so private about so many things. I wanted to have this kind of event to formalize our relationship to anybody who managed to not know, and also, I am embarrassed about myself sometimes, but I really love Maple, so I wanted to A, show you off and B, make sure everybody knows that I love you a lot. that's really sweet. Yes. That was a little bit of a bigger gathering. Yeah. I think we had 40 people. Yeah. Big is big. Big. Yeah. Sure. Yeah. We rented we rented a nature center. as well, because I am not an event person. I had a lot of anxiety leading up to our vow renewal. Like I was just sure for whatever reason that something was gonna go wrong and it was going to be more work than was then like the joy I got out of it. And I think the entire time leading up to it, like the entire time leading up into the prep of it, I was dreading the whole thing. because I don't like events. And like we, there are conversations we had where I was like, but I know this is important to you. The dread I'm feeling is not more valuable than how important you feel this is. even though I was like, I was super scared about it. I was like, no and I, let's go. Like the conversation we had about them did always include, I was like, if you really can't, we can bail. it's just money. People will get over it. Yeah. And I think that gave you some of the comfort to be like, okay, if it really feels that bad, I can but you can, you wanted to work through it. I did. I really wanted to work through it and as soon as we started doing the actual prepping work, and I realized how many of the people around us were like, What do you need us to do? Like we are here. we are ready to put the work in for you. I think mentally you were ready to set up all the chairs, set up all the tables, like literally by yourself. I was like really thinking that we have to do it all by ourselves. All cuz we decided to cater it ourselves. We did all the decorating ourselves. We did everything we could do ourselves. We did ourselves. And in my head that meant me and you. Yeah. And then people started like gathering for it and all of a sudden we had a crew of like 20 people who were so excited to help us do this prep. And so I ended up having a really good time. Made me cry. Oh my gosh. Like I think I was also like, The sense of community that it gave me with even my own family usually feel was really powerful for me. Like when I think about the day, that is one of the first things I actually think about is I'm so thankful that I went through it because it really reaffirmed that we have a community that loves us and we're so excited to see us do this vow renewal. That's really sweet. Wow. Makes me very happy to And obviously you two had very different circumstances, with like your insurance and immigration and various factors. But having been through an elopement kind of like that, could you see like the appeal of potentially like why queer couples would be interested in that or share any perspectives on that? I think elopement should be considered by most people who are looking to get married. Just because of the amount of pressure it removes from the entire situation. Yeah. And like people who have grown up with expectations of what weddings should look like can find that very overwhelming when you start thinking about weddings. people with anxiety will definitely feel some pressure from having to to plan a large event. And I think elopement help people recenter that it really is about you and your partner. And everything else should be a bonus. Like it really, I love that. Yeah. It really scales back the important parts of the day where, when I think about our elop. I think about you and me. Yeah. Reading our vows. Not trying to get into a dress or arranging for Aunt, aunt Brenda to have a ride home or anything. Yeah. Because it was like everything that happened during the day, we ended up like we did together and when things went wrong, it was the five people who are gonna be in the wedding are here and also saw the thing go wrong. it doesn't matter anymore. And we all just were able to laugh it off. I think like elopement should probably be seen as just as valuable as a big wedding. I think sometimes elopement get the idea that they're like a cop out or like an alternative to a big traditional wedding instead of. Their own just as valuable thing. Yeah. I actually have managed to escape most cultural messaging about weddings just because I think I'm not paying attention to a lot of things so I didn't know that elopements had this kind of oh, so you are sneaking off feeling that some people which of course depends on like the culture that you grew up on or grew up in, but yeah, like elopement. I think it's possible that the, like larger society views it as, especially parents can view it as an experience feeling stolen from them. When of course the experience should be for the people who are having it. Yeah. Which I didn't have. Like my parents eloped themselves, so they got it. So they like pretty quickly. I told them pretty quickly, I was like, I we're probably going to elope. And my parents were like, yeah, like of course we did the same thing cuz we didn't wanna deal with it either. Oh They did it before it was cool. Yeah. Oh yeah. So I think my parents actually did it secretly. I think they got in trouble with it. I think they got in trouble a little bit. Yeah. Oh, okay. So they were like super excited regardless. Yeah. And I think honestly my. Sharing when I'm ready with my family. Primed them to accept that when I was like, oh yeah, we are probably gonna elope. And also we did elope. They were like, okay. Yeah. That tracks we're usually finding out about things a little later. Yeah. So we didn't have anybody who was super upset about it which was great because then we got to focus on what we enjoyed. And I think maybe especially for queer couples specifically, there is maybe like a bigger expectation placed on us to have this big wedding and reaffirm the like worthiness of the couple. and that can be super, super stressful if you're planning a big traditional wedding and finding like L G b LGBT friendly vendors is its own set of specific anxieties. Yeah. So I strongly recommend bypassing all of it. And then just got in the puppy afterwards. Yeah. Not a party afterwards. It's a lot cheaper to, and yeah. Raise money if it's not a wedding, automatic discount. True. That's very true. Wow. You two are coming in with all the hacks, Yeah. As long as you say it's a, an event, it's an anniversary party. It's an anniversary party slash event. Yeah. It is much cheaper for most like venue rentals and stuff like that because as soon as you put the word wedding in front of it, the price goes up like crazy. You know this Uhhuh, yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Oh, that's awesome. Yeah, I think. like my partner and I'll probably do something similar too, so it's nice to hear you, yes. Yeah, and I elope. It's good. Honestly, I think everyone should elop. Yeah. The current zeitgeist is that Covid has made it much more acceptable to have a legal marriage and then a either cultural or community, like celebration of that marriage, a significant amount of time later. Yeah. Which I hope sticks around cuz that l relaxing of kind of expectations of how marriage should be is better. there's no one size fits all for how you wanna celebrate your love. oh my god. That's the quote, that's the podcast quote right there. I love that. That like really. Because the elements are like you can really customize them. Yeah. Where it's if you're at a venue, you're at like the exact same spot doing the exact same thing and it's Right. 40 other couples before you. So I love that. Yeah. And just having the freedom of the day to decide what we wanted to do. Like I knew I wanted to eat beforehand. I knew that I wanted to have a nice little meal beforehand, like a nice brunch instead of having a fancy dinner afterwards. I don't know why that was in my head. Because you so much, you need to have good food before you enjoy something. So you're, you get your energy levels up because of your agonies. You're so Yeah. And I like we had the freedom to do that because there was none of this expectation that we weren't supposed to see each other on the day of, and. But I like you I wanna be with you. I wanna get ready with you. Like I value your opinion more than anyone else's. How can I not have you tell me? I need you to check my hair. I think I did your hair. I think you did my hair. Yeah. You definitely did my hair for Bow Renewal. Yeah. I think that's definitely gotta be at the top of the list of traditions. We can mix nay. Like people being like, you have to sleep in another bed the night before. It's what? No, you couldn't do. Yeah. Oh God, no. We're so terribly clingy with each other. I don't think we could manage it. Yeah. And if that's something that you wanna do That's correct. To dig the best thing about it a little bit, you can if you can still do that with a lo if you wanna do that. Yeah. you can sleep in another bed. Great. Yeah, Awesome. So I think to like wrap things up a little bit, Something that I've been asking everybody because it really relates back to the theme of the podcast and because I really enjoy hearing everybody's perspective is if I were to ask you why you think every wedding should be a little bit queer, what would you say? I think if you take queering and like using queer as a descriptor for subverting some kind of norm, then everybody could be a little, like a little, just more catered to the couple and not surrounding like all the, especially like even for straight couples, like you don't have to do the gender norms with it. I know there's Some starting where like you're only supposed to have bridesmaids and only supposed to have groomsmen. But if you have friends of another gender, then they should be the ones to stand up next to you. Love that. So true. I think that a lot of people could benefit from looking at other kinds of love. especially like couples who may not have considered it before. So looking at what other people have done for their weddings could give you ideas that you never thought you'd have before. And seeing how like a straight couple, looking at how a gay couple did a wedding or a gay couple looking at the way that a wedding and their, like cultural heritage has been done. Every wedding should be a little bit queer cuz it should be something new. So let's make something new. That's just for us is a good way to think about it. Yeah. I like almost guarantee no other couple has celebrated their wedding with a K burger And then we have charcuterie boards at our, yeah, at our renewal. We love the charcuterie board. Loved it. there's a grazing table. The whole table is just for food. Sloan, have you ever thought about being like an author or like a poet or something? I feel like you just put things in like these amazing sentences that are just like, yep, thank you. I haven't actually written in a while, but I love to do a little creative writing. someone loves to. Books as well. Oh yeah. I did a lot of book binding writing. They wrote a really good, genuine book about our characters from Yeah. and then Mound, the book themselves. Aww. Created the book from scratch. Yeah. I wrote I think it's ended up being like 205 pages and then found it into a book and gifted it to you as a present. It was really nice. Really just like a physical object of our connection and love That is so cute. Oh my gosh. I love you too, Aw. Okay, it's wrap everything up. I have a fun little lightning round. I just think they're so fun. Yeah. We can't go off on tangents. We have to be so succinct. One sentence, But before I do that, is there anything that you two really want to share with the world? Do our little lightning room. I think one specific thing that people should keep in mind when doing elopement or wedding planning or event planning at all is that the colors of things don't matter and you should try and let go of that A theme is nice, but the colors matching is something that I got hung up on a lot. So try to keep your heart open for other shades of Saru and indigo Wow. colors out the window. They say, yeah. I was just gonna say, if you are not having like hard conversations leading up to your wedding, you're probably doing something wrong, right? Like nothing after a marriage should be a surprise. Yes, a hun. Yeah. I really agree with that. Yeah. There are so many resources out there. where you can before you get married, you need to talk about finances. Potential children, raising how you talk, how your religious beliefs are gonna work, if you have any, and then how your extended families are gonna work and end of life care. I think that's something that a lot of people don't talk about. Oh yeah. Wow. You should think, you should have these conversations. Like you should exhaust every really hard conversation before you join your lives together, because then the rest of your life is gonna be, you've already set up the groundwork for a lot of those hard conversations, because if you're getting married and you are going into this relationship with the intent that it will be for the rest of your lives, you should think about what the rest of your lives look like. And how your lives will end together too. Yeah. And make sure that they're gonna be good the whole time. Wow. Wow. That's great because you already answered one of the lightning round questions, Oh. So we actually have specifically different things that we prefer. Yeah. We were looking over the list you sent us earlier and I was like, you need to tell me what you're saying because I have a feeling we're gonna say the same thing. And we were gonna say the same thing. Oh. So we switched it for the advice. We've got more advice. We like to talk. Yeah. Oh, and I'm, I like to give advice, which is really bad at following it sometimes. But I love to work through a situation. No, I am getting really wise vibes from both of you, so I think it's okay. Okay. Are you two ready? Yes. Slightly round. All right. I go. Do you remember who or what character was your gay awakening? The hex girls from Scooby-Doo. Princess Manke and Sophie from House Moving Castle. Okay. I powerful women. Yeah. Yeah. We love that. We love that. Do you two have any favorite queer icons? I you go, sorry. I do not follow celebrities that much, so I will have to go like a literary queer icon and say Gideon Nav. Damn it. That was what I was gonna say. shit. Okay. Hold on. Gideon Nav from the Locked Tomb Trilogy by Tamson Mirror. Okay, so it's a book. It's a book, yes. Okay. She's just such a strong. Queer butch woman and I'm obsessed with her Hey, I didn't, we should have talked about that one first too. Yeah, she's really what's forefront like on my mind right now? I think, honestly, this is gonna be a little wild and I'm gonna catch some flack from this, from anybody who knows what I know, but VICA from Homestuck, she's a bad person, but she did nothing wrong. And the way that she approaches being a bad bitch is so queer and iconic. Everybody needs to know. That's okay. I have gotten so many different answers on this question. Okay. So that's why they're fun. Cause they're all different and like you said, that's part of being queer. It's all different and out of the norm. So we love it. Okay. Best relationship advice in one sentence. It is always us versus the problem. And not me versus you. Positive cry. We're really good at making people cry, That was how we knew our vow renewal was a success because yeah, we won. Yeah. Immediately after we read our vows again I got embarrassed, so I was like, we're gonna leave out this side door, go for a walk with each other for just a little bit, so have a good time, eat some food. And then we left and came back like half an hour later. But apparently right after we left, everybody was just crying. Everyone was like sobbing, like people had to leave we win. Yeah, I felt like we won My probably one like best se one sentence relationship advice is, If you both, if somebody's feeling bad, you should eat something and drink some water and then revisit what you're doing because it's so easy to forget what your body needs. And having somebody else can help you remind each other what you're doing. Yeah. And you're very angry. Yeah. I'm always like, okay, that I see that you're having like a kind of a breakdown. Would you like to go eat some sushi just for no reason? Just wondering. and also just the space too is usually great. Yeah. Love that. Okay. Favorite thing about the other person? I love how intensely you approach the world. you like everything you do. If you are gonna do it, you do it 100%. And explore. Oh, Gideon is here. Oh hi our cat has joined the podcast. Our cat has joined the podcast. You just explore the world with such an intensity that I don't think I have ever seen in anyone else, and it makes me really excited to see what else you will find out while you're exploring. That's I think my favorite thing about you Maple, is like how much enjoyment you get out of sharing with people and at the same time how much I enjoy when you share like yourself free of other people's expectations when you go a little Ferrell in the house. Okay. When you're crawling around on all floors, on all floors. Cuz you're like, I just really gotta touch the carpet real quick or something. I dunno you've done that, but we definitely have so sweet about you. Mine is so sweet. And you're talking about me going faroh goblin mode. And why shouldn't you? You've had a hard life. You need to relax sometimes and go goblin mode. I can edit it out if you want to. Maple No, it's okay. It's really funny. Oh, okay. That I do that. I love to see you relaxed, and I love to see you enjoying yourself in ways that you don't feel any shame about. Why is that bad? That's, no, that's really pure. I appreciate that. Yes. Yep. Okay. Okay. Last but not least, favorite snack that maybe you're gonna go have after the show. I'm gonna have baked brie with apricot jam. Ooh. She's fancy, right? See, the thing is you're actually allowed to have that whenever you want. It doesn't have to be a special occasion. Yeah, it can be. It can be Saturday afternoon. Yeah. You're allowed to have fancy food whenever you want and no one can stop you from having baked brie. That's why we have a charcuterie board like three times a week. because it's also the thing about a charcuterie board. It's just stuff on a plate. you can just throw it on there. Very true. What's your favorite snack? I think my favorite snack is probably I love a fresh fruit that I always forget. So like a cherry, a grape, a beautiful Mandarin Just one cherry. That's so true. I'd probably eat like a, an alarm amount one time, a mango. One time I ate so many strawberries. I got hives, I had another reaction to the strawberries cause they were yeah, we got some grapes for the first time in a while and I like finally went into the bag to have myself a few grapes and there's like none left. I ate'em all. I like a There you go. A fruit. Okay. We love it. A fruit. Fruit for a fruit, it makes the whole world grow. You don't have to put that in. That was pretty bad. Yeah. I love it. I love it. Fruity. Thank you two so much for sharing part of your love story and, being a little bit vulnerable. I know sharing love can be vulnerable and we really appreciate you sharing and I'm so excited that the rest of the world. You get to hear your love story cuz it's a good one. I, this is a, it makes me feel egotistical every time I say it, but we have some close friends, multiple people, like I think over five. Yeah. They hang out with us and they've independently told us that being around us makes them believe in love and it makes them like a few of'em have been like, yeah my family life. Like seeing you two together makes me believe that healthy, loving relationships are possible. Yeah. And I think that always reminds me not to take what we have for granted and that it's a product of work and that we love each other and we're gonna work for it. Yeah. We literally we were in IKEA with our one friend and of course we were in the nursery section because I love to look at that kind of stuff and we. Like we're talking about when do we wanna have kids? Let's figure out this timeline. And we were just having this conversation in front of my one friend and afterwards she was like, wait, did you guys just have a con, did you guys just decide something? I didn't realize because I thought there was gonna be fighting We were like, okay, we have to have these criteria met before we're gonna be comfortable both having children And then we just hash it out real quick. She's I forgot that conversations between a couple can come. Like mutual places of respect and not win in a fight. Yeah. Like just, yeah. Especially with a lot of queer people, like some, you don't grow up in the best, like with those role models, your relationships might not always be respect based. So it feels really good. Whenever people tell us that they love to see our love and we are like good role models for a couple. That makes me feel warm and fuzzy. That makes me feel warm and fuzzy. Like, how cool to know that you two are just living your best lives and you're like literally healing the world. Around you. Just by that's so amazing. Please don't stop doing what you're doing Cause it's amazing. Thank you. I thank you so much. I'm so excited to love her for a very long time. I'm gonna cry. I'm really gonna cry. Oh yeah. Thank you again so much.