“My father always said be true to your own life and your own reality,” Mr. Guthrie said. His reality, and Ms. Ladd’s, had become anchored to a sense of life’s fragility. “Not only is life fragile, it’s shorter than you think,” he said. “And when you find somebody who is your friend, who brings you comfort and makes you smile, those become important things.”
On Oct. 22, Mr. Guthrie proposed at the farm, over morning coffee at the kitchen table. “I said, ‘I’m going to take care of you the way a man wants to. I want to marry you.’”
Ms. Ladd was already married to him in a spiritual sense. “I told him, I made this commitment to you in my heart many years ago,” she said. “There was never any turning back.”
On Dec. 8, Ms. Ladd and Mr. Guthrie were married before a deputy county clerk, Tania J. Pearson, at the South County Courthouse in Delray Beach, Fla. Because of Covid restrictions, no guests were allowed.
Ms. Ladd, in a white dress with three-quarter-length sleeves and buttons at the bustline, matched Mr. Guthrie, in a black Hawaiian shirt and jeans, curl for curl. She wore a veil, though. “I didn’t have one the first time,” she said. “I wanted that lovely feeling.”
The 20-minute ceremony included vows they decided upon weeks earlier, when Mr. Guthrie’s sister, Nora Lee Guthrie, visited them at the farm. “She asked us, What are our vows?” Ms. Ladd said. “We both looked at her like deer in the headlights. I said, ‘Is that even allowed? Can you have participation at a courthouse wedding?’”