15/05/2013 07:00 BST | Updated 13/07/2013 06:12 BST

' I do...'

As a little girl, I had always dreamed of a big white wedding. As an adult, it seemed out of the question.

I never experienced a light-bulb moment when I decided I was gay. There are so many layers to sexuality, it took a while to peel them off one by one...

So as I grew older it dawned on me that I may never be able to get married. In an age of personal choice and freedom it is a constant struggle to be accepted as a 'married' couple.

Besides the legal issues, there is a stigma attached that lesbians and gay men are somehow different. We work, pay our taxes, contribute to society, but sadly are deemed by many to be second class citizens.

We long for the day when our relationships and family are viewed with respect and full equality afforded to others.

May 20th and 21st sees the next Commons debate regarding same-sex marriage in England and Wales (Scottish Parliament is expected to introduce the Bill by Summer 2013). It is an important step forward for us all.

My partner and I had wanted a simple, elegant and traditional wedding ceremony, and in January this year that is exactly what we had, except that we were ' civilly partnered'.

I remember walking through the 'wedding' venue doors on my dad's arm, seeing our closest friends and family, brimming with pride. I searched for Horse with our best woman, needing to know that she was okay. She looked beautiful, stunning, and I had never felt so sure of anything in my life.

My parents initial fear, anger and disillusionment over having a lesbian daughter had been replaced with pride, tenderness and hope for our future together.

There were few dry eyes at the end of our ceremony and some of the most heartfelt and humbling things were expressed during the speeches.

It had not registered with my best friends, until seeing us standing there like any other couple, symbolising our love and commitment to each other, just how important it is for us to have our union recognised by law. Something they easily take for granted as a heterosexual couple.

By making our special day public, maybe our story will strike a chord with you. Maybe it will inspire some and upset others.

My hope is that it will bring visibility and a tolerance of different viewpoints, and that life continues regardless.

Some four months later I am a 'wife' that has a 'wife', and have to pinch myself, is it really true?

Love is everything - regardless of gender, race or sexuality. I am thankful every day that we have each other and love.