At some point I stopped referring to Valentine’s Day as Single’s Awareness Day. It didn’t happen because I was in the joyful throes of a relationship. It happened because, eventually, I stopped caring that I wasn’t.
During the holidays, opinions are bounced around a lot. Is Christmas about Christ, family, or presents? Is Easter about Jesus or a bunny rabbit? Is Halloween about candy, about witchcraft, about Satan, about spirits, or about something different altogether? There is no right answer. What’s historically correct doesn’t mean much. The world is constantly changing. What a holiday means to someone has to do with how that particular person decides to celebrate it, not what anyone else dictates.
So is Valentine’s Day about sex and roses? Sure. Just not to me.
For me, Valentine’s Day is about having fun and feeling love. I’m not only talking about romantic love, either. It can be love for your partner, your friends, your family, or yourself. This year, I wore pink and yellow eyeshadow, stockpiled candy for friends, wrote a card for my roommate, got an “I love you!” text from my mom, was treated to Logan’s with my family by my grandpa, treated my stepdad to dinner at Panera, ate cookies with heart-shaped sprinkles, and felt pretty much delightful. Before the clock hits midnight, there will be no kisses, no surprise dates, no bouquets. Still, my heart is full.
Life is the big romance. -Francesca Lia Block
I have an awesome family, and for all our disagreements, I know they love me.
I’m blessed with friends who are witty and kind and who know how to cook a lot better than I do.
I get to go to work three days a week to watch cartoons, draw pictures of princesses and baby seals, and see adorable little faces beaming up at me.
I know that, if I try, I can find a place in the world where I will feel happy, appreciated, and useful, and that if the place isn’t where I thought it would be, it’s probably because there was a better place somewhere else.
If I had a word to explain my vision of God, it would be Love…because even if you can’t always see it or feel it, it’s there. It’s mysterious and sometimes hard to find and even harder to define. It’s scary and it’s infinite and it’s wonderful. It might come easily or with difficulty, but if you call it long enough, it will always come.
I am drenched in, filled with, awed by love.
Happy Valentine’s Day.
(Bonus: You can read Francesca Lia Block’s short story, Safe Love, here. It’s where the above FLB quote is taken from, and there are some things in it that I think are important to keep in mind during times like Valentine’s Day.)