The dreaded day of Valentine….This has always been a tough holiday for me. Since I can remember, I have struggled with being a single person on this day. When I was in college, I decided that I would start taking myself out on dates. I called them “Jesus dates.” It was just me and Him and we’d go and I would actually communicate with Him and treat myself to dinner and a movie. I continued these little dates about once a month or so regardless of the Valentine’s Day stuff and tried to value myself during these moments. It got me through young adulthood.
Then, as a full-on adult, still single with no prospects, I ran into an old friend who introduced me to a guy from another country. He was cute. He had a nice butt. I told him so. It was love at first sight. I was in my 30s by this time. Our short whirlwind ended in marriage and our first Valentine’s Day was spent watching The Walking Dead. My husband bought me chocolates and he drew a picture for me. He drew the praying hands from scratch. He knew I was (and still am) a woman of Faith and drew the praying hands. I wish I still had that drawing. It was the first and last best Valentine’s Day ever.
Now, with about 10 additional years and two children in tow, it’s just me again. A party of one. With onesies… I have returned to being alone on this dreaded day, but I have kids now. They see everything.
How do I navigate these waters without teaching them that I absolutely have no love for this holiday, for what this holiday currently means? I must decide every year to approach it head on for them. At some point, I’ll teach them the history, but in the meantime, I will have to show them how to love their peers and teachers. Last year, I bought my kids silk roses and mini hearts with chocolates inside. They turned around and gave the silk roses back to me when they saw I did not have any in my own hand. They shared their candy with me, too. The silk roses are still in my kitchen where they gave them back to me. This year, we went to the Dollar Tree and bought each of their teachers a customized gift. That was fun for the kids. It helped me not be depressed or angry this year as I pursue a divorce or reel from the loss of several friends or other significant relationships or jobs or what-have-you.
The Dreaded Day of Valentine is just another day this year. This is better than it being a day to look forward to hating.