This morning, while lazily eating a bowl of oatmeal and watching the Sunday Morning show on CBS with my Mom, Charles Osgood introduced an Opinion monologue from comedian Paul Reiser (anyone else remember the show Mad About You?) The link to this realist’s view of Valentine’s Day is found here: http://www.cbsnews.com/news/paul-reiser-on-irritating-valentines-day/
I open with sharing this article with you, because Paul summarizes how I (read: we) view Valentine’s Day.
Sure, when I was a teenager and started dating, I fell into the belief that Valentine’s Day was a HUGE deal, and I should be spoiled beyond belief on this day. That my boyfriend’s efforts on this day spoke volumes for 1. how well he could spoil me, and 2. how much he loved me. We fought the crowds with other believers for reservations at restaurants, or seats at the movie theater. Even then, I wasn’t sure how I felt about receiving bouquets, but I remember receiving them, and the biggest heart-shaped-box possible of chocolates. I never said I made it easy for any of the men in my life.
As I got older, and my relationships also matured, I began to see Valentine’s Day from an outsider’s perspective. When I met and started dating my husband, I made it clear that I wasn’t a fan of Valentine’s Day. And I certainly wasn’t a fan of bouquets. The boxes of chocolates, however? We reserve February 15th for discount Valentine’s Day candy shopping. And that’s how I like it.
But we do not celebrate “Valentine’s Day.” We do not buy into this massive hysteria of celebrating our relationship one day a year, which this year happens to be the coldest day of the year. We don’t fight crowds at a fancy restaurant, or anywhere else couples congregate to celebrate our relationship. We love each other 365/66 days each and every year, and share in and show our love throughout the year. Although, because I LOVE greeting cards, I will buy my husband a card or two for almost each and every holiday, Valentine’s Day being no exception.
This year, we are celebrating Valentine’s Day apart due to deployment. Which is a whole other reason that I do not observe Valentine’s Day.
We’ve just gotten over the loneliness of missing each other through Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s. Now piggy-backing on all of these Holidays that we DO celebrate, and this holiday that is devoted to devotion. Like I really need one more reason to miss my husband, am I right?
I certainly don’t scoff at others’ demonstrations of love with their loved ones on this day – I am not one to dictate how everyone spends today or celebrates their love. That would just be ridiculous and awfully mean of me to do. But if you’re not in the mood to celebrate, or just haven’t ever felt the need to celebrate your relationship one day a year on this date, I am here to tell you that it is OK!
Still feel the need to celebrate while your significant other is deployed or away? Get together with the ladies and celebrate “Galentine’s Day” instead! (I don’t have a fancy word for the guys, sorry). Or, pamper yourself today! If today just doesn’t feel like any other Sunday for you, don’t sulk about it. Do something that brings on fond memories of your relationship; watch a romantic comedy. Cook yourself a meal – maybe something your loved one doesn’t care for or cannot eat if he or she has food allergies or sensitivities. Or do something creative and/or good for you; paint, read, exercise, find something on Pinterest to replicate. If today means something to you, you should feel good today!
Happy Valentine’s Day, however you recognize, or don’t recognize, today!