The New (and improved) Valentine’s Day

lw

Guess what day it is…Now, I know you’re afraid to say the name out loud, like it’s Voldomort, and calling it by name will somehow unleash all its evil power, but brace yourself….

IT’S VALENTINE’S DAY

And this year my roommates and I all have very different relationship statuses.

Me: in a loving, long-term relationship (after meeting online, if you didn’t catch that earlier). We still have a few sweet surprises planned for each other, but it’s not the same butterfly-fest it was the first year. Not like…

L: in a brand, spanking new relationship– so new she agonized over which cutesy Pinterest gift to make him… you’re a catch (with Swedish fish)? or you’re my stud muffin (baked goods)? Wait… is that too much?? What does that gift say exactly? (Sweetie, it’s food. Just pick one.)

E: just got out of the worst relationship ever (maybe a slight exaggeration) and works in high end retail where every man hits on her, while buying his lady a V-day present. Can’t get much more jaded than that.

So needless to say, my house has been a lot of fun this week. And I think I might develop a stress ulcer from having to switch from “isn’t love grand?” to “men suck and they should all die” every two seconds, depending on which roomie I’m talking to.

And even though I enjoy the sweetness of Valentine’s Day with my man, I was brought up to have a broader view of the controversial day (thanks mom and dad). Growing up, my parents (okay, mostly my mother) would surprise us kids with little treats throughout the day, and we’d be encouraged to do things for our friends, teachers, anyone important in our lives, and even random strangers (give a box of chocolates to the neighbor, or a heart shaped cookie to the homeless man on the curb).

Valentine’s Day shouldn’t just be about our significant other (or lack thereof). It should be about all-encompassing love, doing something to put a smile on someone’s face, making a difference in some small (or big) way.

I know what you’re thinking… barf. Can you be any sappier? Yeah, probably. And even though I advocate online dating (I mean, why not?), today I’m going to advise staying offline. Sure, you could sit in your heart-dotted underwear, guzzling a bottle of Cabernet, belting out “All By Myself” while swiping left on Tinder. But you could also spend the day appreciating the people who are already in your life. Okay, I’ll even allow the cute guy in the cubicle next to yours. 😉

Because this year, being surrounded by old love, new love, and loves gone by, I realized there are a thousand different forms of love… what makes one any better than the next?

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