5-18 Powell's City of Books, World's Largest Indie Bookstore by Judith Ashley and Sarah Raplee

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Valentine's Day...Dread or Delight?

What can be said about Valentine's Day? Ohh goodness, where do I begin? How about we start with what exactly does this specific day mean?

To many people, Valentine's Day has become synonymous with love, most specifically couples in love. What better way to express the love you feel for your spouse or parter than a bright red bouquet of roses, chocolate, and a cheesy card with a picture of an adorable puppy that says, "I woof you!"? It is those small things that count, after all. However, over the years I have seen a growing trend of anti-Valentine's Day.

What exactly do I mean by anti-Valentine's Day?

We've all seen those memes and statuses where someone has declared Valentine's is meaningless to them because they have no one to share it with. They abhor the idea of celebrating such a day, and often feel left out. Therefore, they become anti-Valentine's Day.

As a woman with the most awesome husband in the world, I love Valentine's Day. However, I didn't always, because I too, have felt that sting of aloneness. So I can totally relate to dreading a day that celebrates couples. At least, that was until I realized that this specific day can mean so much more than celebrating my relationship. One year, long before my husband and I were a thing, I treated myself to a night of dinner and a movie. The following year, I took my mother to the fabric store and bought her a new sewing machine. She was totally delighted, and still remembers it to this day as the best Valentine Day's ever. For all intents and purposes, we were a couple, and then later stopped at some little dive restaurant on the side of the road and ate their hamburger, fries, and shake for two meal for the price of one! 

No matter what founding Valentine Day story you subscribe to, (and yes, there are several) the one thing in common they all have is the right the celebrate love as you see fit. Be it romantic, friendship, or family. No one says you have to have a significant other to appreciate and celebrate a holiday designated to love. So all you lovely people out there, just remember that. Valentine's Day is a day of love, no matter if you are single. And love comes in many forms. Your parents, siblings, best friend, even your pets! 

So everyone gather 'round the candy aisle and buy that chocolate and flowers, and those snarky cards. And also remember, the DISCOUNTS the rest of the month! (I may or may not be eating a box of heart chocolates right now!!) Okay, I am! *licks fingers*

As this post is "technically" after Valentine's Day, I leave you with a HAPPY VALENTINE'S MONTH!!!!

Now go forward, and eats the candy! 


Sarah Raplee said...

Great post, Ishabelle! I was at a meeting a few weeks ago and ran up against this anti-Valentine's Day sentiment. I agree that it's a great time to celebrate all kinds of love. We always give the grandkids cards and candy.

Your story about buying your mom a sewing machine warms my heart.

Diana McCollum said...

I love that you bought your mom a sewing machine and she still thinks it's the best Valentine's day ever! When we lived close to our kids I would take the older ones to the show for Valentines. it was our tradition. The little kids got candy and a card. This year I gave my hubby a card and he gave me one. He also took me out to our favorite restaurant for a Valentines Breakfast. We don't go there often because it is very crowded. That day we were there at 7:00 in the morning when they opened. I promised him a movie out soon. Happy Valentine's Month!!!

Maggie Lynch said...

A great post to remind people that it doesn't have to be the "one true love" celebration. I can remember as a child going to school with a valentine's card for EVERY person in my class. It was an instructive lesson because not everyone in class was my friend. However, my parents were clear that friend's get my valentines day love every day. But others may rarely receive love and the role of valentine's day was to make sure that everyone I cam in to contact with had at least one day of shared love.

Because I had two relatives who took in foster children when I was growing up, our extended family was large and diverse. A tradition was to gather at one home (usually my grandmother's but not always) and exchange cards. Again, EVERY person in every family--that was about 40 people--received a valentine's day card. Next to Thanksgiving, it was my favorite day of the year.

As for my husband and I, we do something special at home on Valentine's Day but plan a getaway together for another time. We don't really want to be among the crowds at a restaurant or party. Our Valentine's Day celebration will be toward the end of this month in Astoria, Oregon.

Judith Ashley said...

What a fun post Ishabelle. While I have met some folks who are anti-V Day because they don't have a SO, I'm from the other camp. The world needs love and the more each of us shows someone they are lovable, the better. And the more "someones" we show love to is even "more better." It isn't that I didn't enjoy the cards, flowers, candy when I was married or in a relationship, but I never let that stop me from enjoying the day when I've been single which is most of my life.