What Is Valentine's Day?
Last updated: 2019-04-04
[Disclaimer: I love my wife. I think @supernightnurse is the smartest, most beautiful woman God ever created. I am blessed to even know her, let alone live in the same house with her. It is a miracle that we are friends. A true beauty and the beast story.]
I never really thought much about Valentine’s Day before I met my wife. I can remember very little about this “special” day from my childhood as far as celebrations go.
My wife’s family and mine couldn’t be more different when it comes to remembering this day.
My had little to no traditions or set events surrounding V Day. We would express our love to each other in a simple “Happy Valentine’s Day!” (sometimes) but not exchange cards, candy, or any other sappy stuff.
My wife’s family on the other hand seemed to use the activities of this day to prove or measure how much they were loved. (kinda) There are cards, candy, gifts, and special meals in their home.
Here is what I really think about Saint Valentine’s Day.
According to Wikipedia V Day:
"is an annual commemoration held on February 14 celebrating love and affection between intimate companions. The day is named after one or more early Christian martyrs, Saint Valentine, and was established by Pope Gelasius I in 496 AD. It was deleted from the Roman calendar of saints in 1969 by Pope Paul VI, but its religious observance is still permitted. It is traditionally a day on which lovers express their love for each other by presenting flowers, offering confectionery, and sending greeting cards (known as "valentines"). The day first became associated with romantic love in the circle of Geoffrey Chaucer in the High Middle Ages, when the tradition of courtly love flourished.It was my wife who has showed me some real traditions as far as remembering this day."
According to Ben (that’s me unless my wife is reading this, then it is a friend of mine) V Day is the annual day to prove that you cannot express enough how much you love your wife or husband. It has been set aside by our cultural tradition by expectations that can never be met by even the most ‘romantic’ of partners. The attempts are futile on behalf of those who seek to set aside this day to be remembered as the most ‘romantic’ day on the calendar.
I know it sounds cynical but the end result of Valentine’s Day is disappointment and frustration because we all have bought into the idea that it should be something straight out of a romantic comedy.
The criteria to be met in order to have a successful Valentine’s Day includes a nice warm, glowing mist on the ground when we wake from our sleep. Sweet violin music playing as we eat our gourmet breakfast. A soft scented candle burning in the midst of a calm soothing bubble bath as we get ready to start our day. A wonderful lunch filled with kisses and hugs that warm the soul. An afternoon nap in a bed of roses out in an open sun-filled field. And finally ending with a candle lit dinner and a rich chocolate desert that makes your toes curl.
In reality it is filled with the same messes, diapers, and screaming kids that fills our home during any other day of the year. As hard as we may try, it can’t be anything different than the same junk we deal with every day. We can’t change the world we live in.
Is all lost? No.
Expectations must change. Valentine’s Day should be filled with thankfulness and not expectations. We need to avoid the tendency to expect our loved ones to do certain things or react certain ways.
Take some time today and thank those that have showed love to you in the past not what they will (should) do for you in the future. Just try saying it this year with a phone call or a conversation instead of a card or an event.
Do you think I’m being too cynical? What expectations do you have for yourself or those you love on Valentine’s Day?