I have to admit that I am not a big fan of Valentine’s Day. After decades of being single, that date caused so much heartache for me and my single friends. Even now that I am in a relationship, I don’t like to celebrate because it never brought any joy for me. The holiday only put additional stress on me to be in a relationship (as if I needed any more pressure as I edged closer to 40).
I used to dread the months between Thanksgiving and Valentine’s Day, filled with couple events only to serve as a reminder of my never-ending single status. I remember a huge sense of relief on February 15th and vowed that the next year wouldn’t be like this one. Unfortunately, I let this day on the calendar have power of over me and my emotions.
One year, my roommate and I decided to go out to dinner with an old boyfriend of mine. The three of us were single and we decided that we would be each other’s valentine that year. I was so excited to break the Valentine singles’ curse! The plans were destroyed when my girlfriend took a date at the last minute leaving me and my ex to spend valentine’s dinner together. Needless to say, that plan was scrapped and I spent the evening alone sulking.
If you aren’t in a relationship, the day can be a drag. You may feel sad as you go through your office having to breathe in all those roses sitting on top of your co-workers’ desks and then sink down at your cubicle watching the clock for the dreaded day and evening to be over with already. Worse, you hear the giddy cheers of a girl, who is barely out of college, gleaming over her new engagement ring the next day. You may wonder, “What is wrong with me?”
The problem, after all, isn’t Valentines but the idea you hold around the day. You can waste your day being bitter and sad or you can change your attitude and tell yourself it is just another date on the calendar. Sadly, it is the only day some coupled women get attention from their significant other and the roses and candy are an empty gesture of a worn-out relationship. For another, it could be a fake romance with a new infatuation that will soon fade and she will be back in the dating pool once again. Just because they are a couple (or pseudo-couple), doesn’t mean they are happy or have the relationship that you want.
I feel that every day is Valentines with my man and we surprise each other with gifts at random occasions, not only when Hallmark says so. Instead of wishing you had the chocolates, flowers and fancy dinner this year, maybe there is something more real that you want and deserve to have. Focus on the deeper qualities of the type of man you want, not the surface frivolities. Just because he didn’t arrive by February 14th doesn’t mean that he is not coming, He will, soon enough, and you can have your own special holiday to share together.