Today we celebrate 30 years of marriage. I think back to that day I married the man I loved. The man I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. The man I wanted to be the father of my children. I walked down the aisle so happy and excited for the future we would share together.
I didn’t think about becoming his partner, I was becoming his wife. He was becoming my husband. I was just seeing it as the next step in our relationship. You know, the boyfriend relationship steps: dating, going steady (exclusive), talking about a future together, which lead to engagement. Which was the commitment to get married. It was just the next stage!
Even as we got our marriage license, I didn’t read that as a contract to become his partner. Could I have? For sure. After the ceremony, we signed our marriage certificate we our best friends signing as our witnesses. At that moment, I did realize it was a contract. Wait, should I read this. This seems so final. (I know a little late to get that thought.) So, I smiled, signed my name and changed my name.
I had become his wife, Mrs. Lori Koch, he was now my husband. But marriage was more than the next stage on the boyfriend relationship steps. It was a contract to be joined together legally. We were becoming partners, but more than that. Our marriage formed a partnership.
The definition of a partnership (according to Dictionary.com), “a joint business venture with a view to profit, each incurring liability for losses and the right in the profits.” Our marriage was a joint venture with a vision to become a family, each incurring responsibilities and benefits. Looking at our marriage as a partnership wasn’t romantic. But thinking of it as a partnership helped me understand there would be profits (good years) and liabilities (bad years). And as in partnerships, it didn’t matter who cased the losses, we were both liable for them.
Marriage, like partnerships, is a joint venture. Both partners must be committed. Both must be working toward the same goal. A business will not succeed without that obligation. A marriage will not succeed without that commitment.
Our partnership/marriage has been filled with profits and losses. We worked through the losses, because the focus was not on who caused the liability, but on turning the liability around. Or maybe because we were both too stubborn to sell out. “Never sell when at below market value, sell high!” (But who quits when things are good?)
My marriage has been filled with good days, weeks, months, and years. It has also had its share of bad days, weeks, months, and even years. But my life would have had the same ups and downs. Being married meant I got to share those times with the man I love. However, it also meant I had to be there for his highs and lows. Being devoted to him made me a much better person.
Currently, we are enjoying the benefits of a few profitable years of marriage. We are content. And content means, 'satisfied with what one is or has; not wanting more or anything else,' according to Dictionary.com. “I am very content!”