I’m no fan of Valentine’s Day. I don’t know many people who are. It stands, in it’s cheesiness and hype often regarded as the very pinnacle of love, but in reality I can’t think of anything that is as antithesis to romance as February 14th.
I’m jaded, admittedly; jaded by men who pulled out all the stops on the 14th- dinner, chocolate, googly eyes, maybe a card with hearts on it or flowers of some kind, hand-holding or other forms of surety to their affections, deodorant- and then the moment the gong strikes twelve midnight, went right back to the insensitive clod of a guy they were on the 13th. And somehow, they think this is acceptable. What’s worse is that this type of behavior is what fuels this holiday in all it’s Hallmark glory. There are guys out there who feel it’s perfectly fine to show their ‘romantic’ side once a year by doing something nice for you on a specific day, and sitting back in their chivalrous glory for the other 364. This is precisely what’s wrong with Valentine’s Day.
Of course this isn’t the norm, and really, there’s nothing wrong with a guy who shows his lady some love on the 14th as long as they know that this doesn’t give them a ‘Bye’ the rest of the year. And there are plenty of really great guys who do this. I commend them. I even know some of them.
Mine isn’t one of them.
But I’ll tell you something- I couldn’t care one bit. This man- my husband- while being quite possibly the least romantic man I’ve known, is far and away the best, most consistent and loving husband a girl could possibly ask for. I’ll take that over a box of chocolates any day.
So we don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day.
Interestingly enough, there is so much historical confusion over who exactly this martyred saint was that no source I read seemed to come to any conclusion. It was generally agreed that the modern version of the holiday is tenuously related to the pagan celebration of Lupercalia, or Wolf Festival. This was a brazen and ribald celebration of the she-wolf, or Lupa, that apparently sustained Romulus and Remus of ancient mythology. Men of rank would run naked through the streets, striking at women with goat skins drenched in sacrificial blood. This was a desirable aspect of the celebration as it was believed that any woman struck by the skin would have increased fertility in the coming year. That sounds so romantic, doesn’t it? Line up ladies!!
My husband does so much for me all year round, and it’s exactly why he happily gets to ignore all things Valentine related: He takes care of my car- getting the oil changed, replacing the burned out headlight (and then washing the winter muck off it) buying the right wiper blades and sometimes surprising me with a full gas tank. He makes sure my computer runs beautifully. He has a pot of coffee ready around the time I roll out of bed in the morning, and if there isn’t a fresh one waiting, as I am coming down the stairs he is putting one together, with a smile on his face. He recognizes when life is straining the very blood out of me and encourages me to slow down. He sees pain in my face and asks me how I am, and he genuinely wants to know. He understands my need for tactile love without words, drawing me into his lap or placing his arms around me just at the right moment. He pulls me back into reality when I’ve gone too far into my own head. He sees solutions to problems when all I can see is a huge mess. He is amazing when I am sick. He works very, very hard for us and soothes me through my struggles to gain employment. He makes me laugh every day- hard. He gets me on a level that I sincerely have never known in my life and is fully committed to the happiness of our union. And after a few days of me wistfully wishing for chocolate to stem a sweet craving, he comes home from picking up Griffin and quietly drops a bar of good dark chocolate into my lap. With a smile.
I could seriously go on with more accolades, honor and praise for this man, this thoroughly unromantic man who balks at the very mention of flowers and Valentine’s Day, but you get the picture and I don’t want to sound too mushy. Even though I am. He’s all about the day-to-day living; he’s the guy who shows me through his actions every single day, no matter how mundane or insignificant they may seem, that he loves me, he chose me above all others to be the one to receive his love, and that he can’t be happier with his decision. We’ll celebrate seven years of matrimony this year, and I still have days where I gaze at the rings on my hand in awe, still trying to wrap my oft-dreamy brain around the fact that I am married, and how beautiful this union has turned out to be.
My sweet husband reads my blog whenever a new post goes up so I know he sat down today and saw my words. Mike, I love you so much and am so happy being your wife. You bless me each day with your love, grace and kindness and I would marry you all over again, in a heartbeat, if given the choice.
Love should be celebrated year-round, daily and with a happy heart. Enjoy today if it’s your thing, but show your loved one tomorrow, next week and all year long how much you love and care for them. That’s my plan.