I must admit, I used to loathe Valentine’s Day. When I was in high school, I didn’t have a steady boyfriend. Once I got to college, my relationships were on the casual side and of the “are we or aren’t we dating” variety. So, I viewed Valentine’s Day as a reinforcement of my status as a singleton. Not that I needed any reminding. Especially come February 14 when I got to the workforce and the offices around me looked like a floral shop. My dislike of the holiday didn’t change once I was married (sorry, Josh). It actually wasn’t until I had kids that I began to see things from a different perspective.
My daughter loves Valentine’s Day. Her enthusiasm rubbed off on me and I began planning family traditions to mark the holiday. And it brought back the fond memories I had as a child. I used to love picking out my Valentines, having classroom parties, analyzing who signed their cards “love” vs. who signed “your friend,” and wearing the perfect red, pink, or heart embellished outfit (or all of the above). However, I think it was sometime around high school when I started downright resenting the holiday. So, I decided I didn’t want my daughter to view Valentine’s Day with the negativity I had come to harbor. Rather, I want to instill in her that the day is about celebrating the special people in our lives—and those we are special to. I will tell her it’s about showing the people we love that we care about them, putting the focus on recognizing others rather than herself.
I want her to know she is loved, and that it’s just as important to give as to receive, if not more.
I don’t want her worth to be measured by whether or not she has a significant other. She is significant to so many people, and I want her to focus on celebrating those individuals.
So, to all you single ladies. It wasn’t long ago that I stood in your shoes. If you are a Valentine’s hater like I was, I hope you will try to broaden your perspective. I hope that you will try not to focus on what you don’t have, but what you do. I hope that you will remember the day is also about celebrating the love in your life, of all varieties. I hope you will go to a fabulous restaurant with your girlfriends and drink some good wine. I hope you and your girlfriends will send one another flowers with a note reminding them of why they are amazing. I hope that you will indulge in decadent and delicious chocolates. I hope that if you are alone you will crank up the music and dance like it’s nobody’s business. Lastly, I hope you remember you are special to countless people, and that you celebrate the reasons why. Happy Valentine’s Day.