Glenda and Jennifer Lloyd have endured an on-again-off-again marriage, but that all ends at midnight.
The couple were married for “five days of bliss” under ACT law in 2013 before the High Court ruled the territory was inconsistent with the Federal Marriage Act.
A small ceremony in the United States made their marriage official again, but that joyous moment in Baltimore meant their regular trips to the US took on a bittersweet tone.
“Every time we travelled to America the plane would come into land and we’d be like ‘we’re married again!'” Glenda said.
“And then when we took off we’d say ‘ah, now we’re not’, so that was quite difficult.”
But with the law taking effect in Australia in the first seconds of Saturday morning, that odd sensation of only being married when the geography is just right is coming to an end.
“I think we should just stay up … [and] wait until the clock comes around,” Glenda said.
“It’s a bit like waiting for new year.”
Glenda feared Jennifer would not live to see SSM legalised
And as they count down the seconds, it will put to bed one of Glenda’s biggest fears.
The Lloyds — Glenda changed her name to match Jennifer’s by deed poll rather than marriage — have been watching the clock on same-sex marriage perhaps closer than most.
Jennifer has terminal cancer and Glenda said the tears flowed freely after they watched the bill pass the House of Representatives.
“[Jennifer] was saying ‘are you alright?’ and I said ‘I was just so worried that this would happen after you were gone’,” Glenda said.
“It was a genuine fear that I would still be here and Jennifer would be gone and I would be seeing this enacted without her there to celebrate with.”
But now their marriage will be officially recognised by Australia and it is so much more than a symbolic gesture for them.
Gone are questions about next of kin, which are particularly important due to Jennifer’s stints in hospital.
“And even what’s written on the death certificate is different if you’re not actually married, so it’s really good to have that sorted out,” Jennifer said.
“We probably won’t really think about that until afterwards, and then you’ll think ‘oh that’s good that … it’s clear’.
“[There’s] no question about whether it’s marriage or not.”