Valentine’s Day is a Love-Hate Relationship

loveWell, folks, the whirlwind of Valentine’s Day/Weekend is over and you’re probably back to your normal love-less routine, whether you have a significant other or not. You’re collapsing on the couch after a long day of work, heating a bowl of soup, and flipping through the channels. The romantic cards are still sitting on the counter, possibly displayed on a mantlepiece, but the words in them are all but forgotten. All of the “I love you today and every day because you are my soulmate” refrains, never to be read again. The $100 Cheesecake Factory dinner-for-two will come back to haunt you on your next credit card statement. Incessant nagging will ensue when the garbage doesn’t get taken out and the dishes aren’t put away….

How terrible. This would make a great movie or sit-com, I think.

But I am not this person.

I am the person who likes to celebrate the romance every day. I appreciate the little things. I want the door opened for me when we go see a movie on a Tuesday. I want a letter in the mail just because. I want a “good morning” text when I wake up. I want to spend a Saturday afternoon bowling and insist that I pay because I feel like it. I want to let you pick out the movie this time and I want to send you “good night” texts. And I don’t want this to be overlooked.

I used to want to say that I hated Valentine’s Day. I think that a lot of single girls vehemently insist that Valentine’s Day is a made-up holiday for the couples to rub their happiness in everyone’s faces. And I think that girls in relationships say that they hate how superficial and consumer-oriented the whole things has become. No one wants to be the one to say that they like having an official, national date night. They don’t want to be the one to say that the card they received said the perfect thing. They don’t want to say that the little extra effort that was put in (a reservation at an expensive restaurant, or flowers delivered to work) was actually appreciated.

Everyone wants to say that Valentine’s Day is overrated, a Hallmark-holiday. Everyone wants to hate Valentine’s Day. It’s easier to say how stupid the whole thing is, rather than look like a silly, love-struck puppy, or worse, to be let down and disappointed because the Hallmark-holiday which was over-hyped by the media led you to believe that you would be getting roses and chocolates and a romantic dinner and then your other half, the person who is supposed to know you better than anyone else in the world, forgot.

want to be someone who hates Valentine’s Day. I don’t need it. Like, I said, I already appreciate the little things. I’m already in love every day. Why do I need a designated day so I can celebrate with every other couple all at the same time?

But then I read the words in the Hallmark card and I’m sitting in the restaurant and I’m sipping a glass of wine and I can’t say that I hate it.

This year, my boyfriend and I couldn’t be together for Valentine’s Day, but I planned a trip to visit the day after. The dreaded and much-anticipated holiday approached and I found myself waiting anxiously, expectantly. I had sent a ticket to the Pens game (against the Buffalo Sabres) in the mail to surprise him. (If only I could have seen the look on his face.) I imagined all kinds of cute things he might do. I was even hoping for something generic, like flowers at work, or a romantic card, or a box of chocolates. I got nothing all day. A “Happy valentine’s day” text in the morning and then nothing. So imagine my disappointment–my willingness to say how much I hated Valentine’s Day. (Will boys ever get it right??)

Then I visited and we had a wonderful weekend that completely made up for it. I did get the Hallmark card that made me smile with every word. I got a delicious lunch out at a restaurant I had never been to. I got an artsy trinket to keep and display wine corks (much better than flowers, I thought) and I got to drop the first cork into it Saturday night.


Yes, we might all go back to our normal routines now that this love-sick weekend is over. We might not get cards every day, or have date nights all the time. Some nice things might be taken for granted because we’re not really thinking about it. Maybe we’ll all try to enjoy the little things and say we don’t need the big romantic gestures. But this one day out of the whole year is a nice little reminder that a little extra effort is always appreciated, no matter what day it falls on. And as much as I “hate” Valentine’s Day, it is a day where all the world is celebrating love. What day could be better than that?


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