The day has come once again where couples will celebrate new and time-tested love and singles will profess that it is nothing but a Hallmark-money-driven holiday. Yes, my friends, tomorrow is Valentine’s Day.
Every advertising outlet from the television to my Facebook page is touting the need to purchase something to celebrate the one you love. I’m pretty sure those hitched or not, we are beginning to tire of the “Kiss form Kay” and the incessant reminders to purchase flowers. As tents pop up in front of grocery stores and street corners, my good friend Julie said it best. “Nothing says ‘I love you’ like buying a gift from an eighteen-wheeler in the Fry’s Grocery parking lot.”
At this point you are probably pegging me as the bitter single girl who is unlikely to be the recipient of these Valentine’s Day goodies. You are half-right. I am single and unlikely to be getting flowers or a gift, but I am far from bitter. I am thankful that I am happy in my current relationship status. This year I am wearing Single with pride.
Last year I had a sweetheart and plans for the perfect celebration for Valentine’s Day. What really happened was that he got stuck late at work, came home crabby and unresponsive, and didn’t bother with so much as a card. Was I hurt and disappointed? Absolutely. Should I have been? Not at all. After all, life and responsibilities are so much more important than a holiday. Sometimes life gets in the way. That relationship ended, but it was not because he didn’t dote on me on February 14th.
In a strange twist, that boy and I remained friends and have plans to spend this Valentine’s Day together- as friends. Our relationship is stronger and more honest as friends than it ever was as lovers, and I have learned to respect his hard-working nature and tendencies towards withdrawal in matters of the heart. I’m no longer convinced these character traits are brought on by my own actions, but understand that his background has never included a need to be overly romantic. I am looking forward to a dinner not mired in the stresses of being perfect and a kiss goodnight that will land on my cheek with all of the sincerity of a true friend.
This Valentine’s Day I will celebrate friends; both this boy and all of the others who have blessed my life. They have each taught me something important and I am so grateful to have each of them in my life. If I had the time and space I would call them each by name and tell them why I love them, but instead I will have to mention them as a whole and trust that my everyday words and actions serve as a good reminder.
To the friends that I have known since the second grade, (okay- there is one, and she knows who she is) thank you for continuing to love me and stay in my life no matter that our paths are so different. To those who have known me since junior high and high school, thank you for your constant efforts to stay in touch and for your words of encouragement along the way. I love that we are connected via Facebook and relish your every post and update. To my new and recent fiends met thus far in my adult life, thank you for allowing me into your already busy lives and sharing your worlds with me.
My most special thanks go to my family. You are the friends that God has picked for me and I am thankful to have a mom and dad who are as much friends as they are parents, aunts and uncles who are so much fun to party with, and cousins that bless me with endless joy and laughter. I could not belong to a better group of people!
So, this Valentine’s Day, whether you are blessed with a romantic love or the love of friendship, remember to tell those people how much they mean to you. There is room for enrichment from them all.
Happy Valentine’s Day from Miss Riki to you!