Jay Rifenbary

Jay Rifenbary's Blog

A Commitment of Love


30 years ago tomorrow, March 14, 1981, I exchanged marriage vows with a beautiful woman named, Noni. We made a commitment to honor, love and cherish one another till death do us part. Reflecting on our thirty years of marriage, I am humbled by my wife’s dedication to her family, her moral fortitude, and life long support of our journey together. Actually, I should submit her application for sainthood for having the steadfast loyalty to still be with me. I can honestly state that if it were not for her internal strength of character I would not be the man, father and husband I am today. This is a tribute to all couples that believe there is strength in togetherness, and share a mutual belief in the values that make a positive difference in the lives of those around them.

Through the peaks and valleys of any relationship it is, and will be, a couple’s common core values that creates the resiliency to persevere through the doubtful and difficult times. I have learned over these many years, or maybe I should say have been trained, that it is also a couple’s display of mutual respect that illustrates an appreciation for one another. Personal honesty is another key to any relationship’s survival. To be honest with yourself eliminates the potential to blame your partner for your potential discontent, self-doubt, and lack of self-respect. When we take advantage of those we love, and point to them as an excuse for our own insecurities, it destroys the very fabric of mutual respect, trust, and lasting commitment. Disappointment with ourselves is not the fault of those we love, or those who love us. Using our relationship, or our family, as rationale for not taking ownership for our own behaviors and decisions is self-destructive.

Commitment is defined as, “dedication; application, a pledge or undertaking”. I am sure you would agree that marriage is quite an undertaking. However, as challenging as it might be, the rewards of healthy companionship, raising a loving family, and building a life together encompasses the human experience that provides added purpose and meaning to living each day.

In celebration of this auspicious moment I thought I would share some selected insights from others in regard to their thoughts on marriage.

“Men marry women with the hope they will never change. Women marry men with the hope they will change. Invariably they are both disappointed.” – Albert Einstein.

“Do you know what it means to come home at night to a woman who’ll give you a little love, a little affection, a little tenderness? It means you’re in the wrong house, that’s what it means.” – George Burns.

“In my house I’m the boss, my wife is just the decision maker.” – Woody Allen.

“By all means marry; if you get a good wife, you’ll be happy. If you get a bad one, you’ll become a philosopher.“ – Socrates.

“I love being married. It’s so great to find that one special person you want to annoy the rest of your life.” – Rita Rudner.

“Newlyweds become oldyweds, and oldyweds are the reasons that families work.” – Author Unknown.

“Never go to bed mad. Stay up and fight.” – Phyllis Diller.

“Don’t marry the person you think you can live with; marry the individual you think you can’t live without.” – James C. Dobson.

”Come, let’s be a comfortable couple and take care of each other! How glad we shall be, that we have somebody we are fond of always, to talk to and sit with.” – Charles Dickens.

“Some people ask the secret to our long marriage. We take time to go to a restaurant two times a week. A little candlelight, dinner, soft music and dancing. She goes Tuesdays, I go Fridays.” – Henny Youngman.

“What a happy and holy fashion it is that those who love one another should rest on the same pillow.” – Nathaniel Hawthorne.

As the years have passed I have grown to love my wife more each day. It has been a trip with twists and turns along the way, and moments of wondering what tomorrow may bring. Although not always a vacation, the adventure has brought with it a love and a friendship that will never end. I am thankful to have married up.

Thursday, October 01, 2020

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