Although I think the idea of a day to remind everyone to honor those you love is probably a good idea, I traditionally hate Valentine’s Day. Perhaps it stems from my intense repulsion of feeling like I am the product of some sort of marketing scam, or “motivational” seminar propaganda, which turns me off to the commercialization I feel on Valentine’s Day. I know it is not because I suffer from the fact that I don’t have a Valentine to share the day with, I have several, with my darling sweetheart topping the list. I know I’m very blessed. But what about those who feel alone and unloved on Valentine’s Day? I hate the fact that we have a day that also suddenly becomes “Single Awareness Day” in the same breath.
The question really is, is Valentine’s Day made for the lover or the lover made for the day?
Don’t you just hate:
1) Flower rip offs. I guess being involved in the floral industry, at least in an amateur way; I know the wholesale cost of flowers. I have learned to “bite my tongue” when my darling hubby sends me flowers for special occasions because I NEVER want to discourage the thought that was behind the gesture. My cheap side however cringes to think of what he probably paid for the arrangement that is sent. Now triple that cost just because it is Valentine’s Day…. Consequently I just see the injustice of it all and see red, and not in a good way. Please don’t tell me what a brat I am because I don’t appreciate the good thing I got goin’, believe me I do, but send me flowers any other day of the year.
2) Restaurant crowds. Everybody, and their brother, decide that going out to dinner on Valentine’s Day is the thing to do. The wait is ridiculous; the service is usually less than standard because of the increased demands put upon the servers, and most of the time the food is subpar too. Once again, I would rather go the day after Valentine’s Day and be the only one in the place to command the attention I am paying for. Let’s get Taco Bell and eat at home in peace and quiet. If you want I will even light candles.
3) The competition. I hate the thought of “keeping up with the Joneses” when it comes to proving my love for my significant other. Or, for that matter, him proving his love for me, publically. After all, does your sweetheart want to be the only one who didn’t shower you with gifts on Valentine’s Day, making him feel like a total “smuck” compared to everyone else? It is a known fact that you have to publically announce whatever you are given, or whatever you are doing, on FACEBOOK so that everyone can see the amazing person you have in your life. For me, it is the daily, simple, quite acts of love that prove more to me than that grandiose display of affection given by command because of the day. I have never been a good competitor.
4) The insensitivity. On a day that professes LOVE as the core value, I have never seen more insensitivity to the feelings of others.
Let me illustrate what I mean. Several years ago my mother, who was an elementary school teacher at the time, received a large chocolate candy Kiss from one of her students for Valentine’s Day. In an attempt to spread the love, (probably because she really is not that big of a chocolate lover) she brought the gift over to my son as a Valentine. The problem is... I have a daughter too. Grandma didn’t think this out very well I suppose, because when my daughter asked her, “hey, where is mine?” Grandma simply replied, “Oh, you don’t need it.” (…after all girls should always be dieting, right?)
(Sidebar: Perhaps I might interject that Grandma is famous for saying things that get her into trouble… we all get a big laugh out of her comments, no one is ever really scarred by them, so please laugh with us as I tell this story.)
Now, fast forward to yesterday, the conversation at dinner led to the past Valentine fiasco, meaning that day my son got the big chocolate Kiss and not my daughter, which she has never let Grandma live down. We all laughed as we remembered the remark Grandma made to try and save her blunder, which seemed to create an even bigger one.
So today Grandma came over with all intentions of redeeming herself. She arrived with two giant chocolate Kisses in hand. Since my son no longer lives at home, it appears Grandma had come prepared this time with two Kisses because my daughter's "Bestie" Mandi has moved in to take my son's place. Skipping a few irrelevant details, as Mandi was getting dressed in the other room, Grandma handed my daughter her giant Kiss and, with a hug, wished her a Happy Valentine’s Day. To our surprise, she proceeded to hand her the other Kiss and said, “and here you go. I hope this makes up for the past Valentine’s Day when I said you didn’t need it.” Instantly my daughter and I protested with, “What about Mandi?” She responded, “Oh, she doesn’t need it!” We all burst into laughter…. as the cycle continued. As you can see, besides being darling, Grandma has a wonderful sense of humor too.
I simply had to use this to illustrate how one could become hurt to the core by Valentine’s Day shenanigans, so make sure you practice good sensitivity skills, especially today on Valentine's Day.
Now for all of Grandma’s other grandchildren who didn’t get a chocolate Kiss today, this is what she sends your way.
And...If you work it right maybe you can get two chocolate Kisses from her next year!
As for Grandma, she is probably headed out to Rite Aid tomorrow for the half price Kisses so she is prepared.
Happy Valentine’s Day all my lovelies!
And thanks Mom for making my Valentine's Day so fun!