We really hadn’t planned to get married as such.  A few months ago I asked Carol if she would want to have a civil partnership and she said Yes.
Neither of us believes in having a big wedding type thing and so we agreed that if we did, it would just be with the marriage officer and witnesses.

So a few weeks ago, I decided to initiate the process. I contacted a lawyer to draw up an ANC and then the marriage officer who happens to live in our area.
The MO was available that weekend, so I booked her. We arrived at her house with our witnesses (my sister and her fiancee, my brother and Carol’s best friend Alison)
She explained what was going to happen, what we would need to sign etc.
She asked if we had vows, we looked at each other sheepishly (yas, we really didn’t prepare)
She asked if we had rings (again, No).  It all came together so quickly.  (we did get rings the following day)
But she assured us it was okay, and that she would lead us in some vows.
MO asked us to face each other, look into each other’s eyes and repeat after her.
Up until that moment we had both maybe played down what we were doing. 

Yes, we understood it was a huge step to take and was not taken lightly but it just didn’t ‘hit home’ properly until we were saying the vows to each other.
I had tears in my eyes. Carol’s hands were shaking. It was overwhelming in the best way possible.  It was a beautiful moment, as short as it was.

Later in the afternoon, a few close friends and family came to the house to share in a toast. It was a beautiful, stress-free, joyful day.