Same-sex couples began marrying in Australia on Saturday, a full three weeks sooner than the first marriages were expected to happen on Jan. 9 since the Australian people and Parliament voted in favor of marriage equality earlier this month.
For months, pro and anti-marriage equality ads flooded Australia as the people there had until November to mail-in a non-binding ballot saying whether they were for or against marriage equality, which Parliament would use as a guide for the official vote. The votes were counted and by Nov. 14, it was clear that the Australian people chose love. By Dec. 7, Parliament voted in favor of equality and couples began registering to marry. The hitch was that there was a 30-day waiting period, which would have meant couples could marry only as soon as early January.
But a pair of female couples, one from Sydney and one from Melbourne, sought exemptions that allowed them to wed early, according to The Telegraph.
The lesbian couple from Sydney, Lauren Price and Amy Laker, wore white as they said "I do" at their wedding in Macarthur Park in Camden. The couple was allowed to wed before the 30-day waiting period was up because they had planned a civil ceremony and Price's family had already booked the trip from their home in Wales, UK, according to Yahoo.
Another couple, Amy and Elise McDonald, who had originally planned just a commitment ceremony, were allowed an exemption to skip the one-month waiting period and they married in Melbourne on Saturday, according to 7 News First.
"You don't choose who you fall in love with," said Amy McDonald. "At the end of the day, Elise was the perfect person for me."
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