As a kid, my thoughts on this day were rather a skewed. I truly thought naked babies were flying around the Earth, plunging arrows into the unexpected, minding their own business. I mean, if they want to keep sticking this “cupid” onto cards and signs, what are kids supposed to think? Of course then it turned into this weird popularity game they groom you for in grade school. You find a box of Rainbow Brite valentines, sign them all, and then everyone in the class gets one….because that’s fair. Yet somehow I felt like I never got as many as someone next to me, instead of happy for what I DID get instead. Never mind how Katie got a sucker attached to hers, and I got a rock. LOL J/K
Move on to High School…and some genius Key Club or the latter decide “Let’s raise money by making people feel less than themselves.” Yeah, it’s true, you know who I am talking too. I don’t know if you had it at your school, but the ever famous “Send a Carnation” to a friend or loved one in school. As a gesture of kindness, I applaud this effort. But as High Schoolers who were immature brats, this turned into a “You aren’t cool enough” if you didn’t get one. The pressure I felt to send to ALL of my friends every year, the hope that SOMEONE would remember me….such. a waste. of. time. First off, if you DID get flowers, everyone with time on their hands needed to know WHO sent them to you. And you didn’t mind saying who, especially if it was a guy. But then I would see dear people in the halls who looked so forlorn and depressed and I just wanted to give my flowers away. The feeling that someone remembered me wasn’t worth the feeling of seeing someone else upset. My empathy cup has always been probably to full for my own good, but hey, I was born like this.
Then after school you are an adult, married with kids and NOW the pressure is to remember everyone in your family circle. For YEARS I sent my parents valentines or a small gift, then made or did something for both of my daughters, and then try to think of something creative for my husband. I felt I would give beyond my means and my capabilities sometimes to make everyone else around me happy, and yet almost every year I felt empty at the end of the day. My expectations of what others would do for me was never what it was, usually next to nothing. (Yeah, I know, that’s on me) Flowers were always nice, or a special dinner, but over the years I have learned that THIS DAY I feel less loved than any other. A holiday born to make us all feel less adequate if love isn’t available that day, and from someone you are romantically connected with.
Then God Bless Amy Poehler and her crew at “Parks and Rec” who came up with “Happy Galentines Day” which is celebrated Feb. 13th. To honor all women, to love on all women, but to enjoy that day of celebration of EACH OTHER and not having that “special someone” in your life because believe it or not… that special someone is YOU! Such a greeting card statement, you are sooooo welcome.
So Happy Valentines Day for just the day of LOVE. Love your spouse, your partner, your parents, your kids, your pet, your favorite movie with your favorite ice cream today……love everything about yourself today and those in your life. REINVENT these types of holidays and it completely changes how you see them from year to year. I LOVE you, I will ALWAYS love you, and that smile looks FABULOUS on you today!