I don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day. In fact, I usually consider it a bit of a hassle. It’s one of those dates that would always sneak up on me, then it was a mad dash to the store to find boxes of cards for school exchanges… three kids’ worth… and then they all had to be addressed and folded and stickered shut. Of course the kids never knew how many they needed and never remembered all their classmates’ names.
Being perpetually single doesn’t inspire warm and fuzzy thoughts about a day that celebrates romance, either. My snuggle buddy is covered with fur.
I wasn’t always indifferent about Valentine’s Day. I remember my first Valentine’s as a married woman. We’d only been married a few months, and as a bonus, it was a weekend. I thought it would be the perfect time to take advantage and… well… act like newlyweds. He seemed to be into the idea. He went shopping the day before and was very excited about what he bought me. I, in turn, was ready for something special. Would it be lacy? Sparkly? Chocolate?
None of the above. He bought me gym shoes so I could “work off that little bit of chub”.
Valentine’s day lost its charm.
This isn’t to say I don’t love romance. I adore romance. I read it, I write it, and when a real-life bit of romance makes its way to me, I soak it up and revel in it. I love love, and seeing people in love makes me incredibly happy.
What I’ve let go is the idea of love on a timetable. A dozen red roses on Valentine’s is predictable. Expected, even. They are the base level of recognizing that some gesture is expected. A dozen red roses on a Thursday say, “I was thinking about you.”
Random expressions of love are the heart of romance for me, because they are spontaneous and genuine, not prodded by some society expectation.
Forget Valentine’s and give me a truly romantic man.