Although, honestly, I am not a fan. I really don't have any positive things to say about Valentine's Day. This doesn't come from a bitter place; I left that place a long time ago. Kenny and I don't celebrate Valentine's Day and I don't miss it. It is actually a relief. We wait and try to celebrate the day we found each other at the end of the month. It is more personal to us and doesn't seem quite so contrived by Hallmark.
Why, you may ask, am I such a curmudgeon about a holiday all about love? Well... there are several reasons. Valentine's Day is often stressful for singles, people dating, married couples and parents. I think more people stress out about Valentine's Day than truly enjoy it.
When you are single, it is one of the worst days of the year. Everything around you for the days and weeks leading up to it serve as a reminder that you are ALONE. I remember many single Valentine's trying to get together with girlfriends to ease the pain. Even those times I was single by choice, perfectly content living my single life, Valentine's Day would come around and try to make me feel bad for not being in love.
When you are in a relationship it causes stress. In the early stages of dating, you never know what to get the other person. Are we in a card stage? If so, what kind of card? Funny? Mushy? Should I just give candy? What if he gets me something nice? What if he doesn't get me anything at all? Seriously... it is rarely a relaxing occasion. When a couple has been together for a while, it always seems like there are expectations. I know too many women who have high hopes for VD only to be disappointed year after year. Do we really want cards that are mass produced with predictable sentiment? It is a rare man (or woman, for that matter) that can write a love poem year after year for his/her true love.
And going out to dinner? Forget about it. Menus often are prix fixe and ridiculously expensive. You need a reservation almost everywhere. Everywhere else has long waits. Personally, I'd rather go on a random Tuesday than fight the crowds. This year, it falls on a Saturday. I can only imagine what a zoo it is going to be.
Now that I am a mom, I try to get into the spirit with the kids. However, it seems to be ALL about the candy. I rebel against that notion. My kids didn't get any candy from me. They got books. They did, on the other hand, get loads of candy from the valentine exchange at school. There is no escaping it. I just need to endure a few days of sugar highs and constant begging for the lollypops in their valentine bags.
Don't get me wrong. I love romance. The idea of Valentine's Day is nice. It has become something that is anything but romantic. While I dislike this made-up holiday*, I don't think any less of those who embrace it. More power to them. Some people truly enjoy today and for them, I am glad. I am not sad today. On the contrary, I am having a very nice day. I hope you are, too. *grin*
*I do know that there really was a St. Valentine. However, even historians disagree as to the real saint for which the holiday is honoring. Check out this article on History.com to read more: http://www.history.com/content/valentine/history-of-valentine-s-day