I have enjoyed this Valentine’s season so much this year. For me, the week leading up to Valentine’s Day was the real holiday, filled with crafting valentine’s to send to my girlfriends and creatively thinking up a no-cost present to send to my boyfriend.
But this year was different than years before. It’s taken me a while to understand and enjoy Valentine’s day.
When I was 16, I spent Valentine’s day feeling sorry for myself because I didn’t have a boyfriend to send me a dollar carnation at school.
When I was 18, I thought Valentine’s day was all about proving how great of a girlfriend I was to my first boyfriend by cooking great cookies and making a million little pink and red crafts.
When I was 20, and I finally started dating Sean (who I’d crushed on for 5 years), I spent Valentine’s day fixated on what a “good relationship” looked like and ended up feeling totally awkward and spending way too much money on a stuffy restaurant full of 50 year olds.
Last year, I learned from my past and had a wonderful time spending v-day at home watching Law and Order SVU and sharing an easy homemade dinner with Sean.
While things improved, the problem with all of these Valentine’s celebrations is that I was always focused on what other people would do for me and other people’s opinion of me.
This year, I didn’t think much about what I would do this Valentine’s day or what I would get. Since I went to visit Sean in Arizona the week before, we weren’t planning on celebrating Valentine’s day. I kind of thought I’d just skip over the holiday this year, but not being with Sean allowed me to see an entirely new layer to Valentine’s Day.
A holiday all about sharing warm, fuzzy, loving feelings is right up my alley, whether I have a boyfriend or not.
I spent so many years of my life afraid of showing people my feelings, especially how much I care about them, because they might not feel the same way or because I’d be seen as weird. And I know I’m not alone in this. We all hide our feelings, even feelings of love, in fear of judgement.
But the thing is, people need to hear it. People need to hear they are loved. They need to hear someone is happy they exist. Even if it’s cheesy and awkward, I think we had it right back in elementary school, everyone deserves a valentine.
I honestly think all of the people spending Valentine’s day gushing over the expensive dinners, chocolates, jewelry, and flowers that their significant other got them are limiting themselves. Every day of your relationship, you have the opportunity to love your S.O. Valentine’s day is another great day to do so, but V-day can also be an awesome opportunity to show someone who you normally wouldn’t that you love them.
There is so much love to go around and there are so many people who need to hear it. I think Valentine’s day is not about the couples–it’s about the many different ways you can make as many people as possible feel loved.
So if you didn’t feel it yesterday, or any other day, I want you to know you are loved–if for nothing else than I love you for reading this post 😉
P.S. here’s a pic of my little love, Nala, 6 years ago on Valentine’s Day. I had just gotten her and I was feeling sorry for myself because Sean didn’t like me (jokes on me right? lol)