Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching, to a point where I wonder how time is actually able to move so fast. There are so many differing opinions about Valentine’s day, that it almost seems like the holiday itself is a polarizing topic. Some people go all out on this day, whether it’s full-blown being bitter about the holiday or being full-blown ecstatic to celebrate it, and some others couldn’t care less.
I…am painfully neutral about it.
I am 100% aware of how commercialized the holiday is, and that takes over most of my thought process about it. Granted, FOMO does kick in (“fear of missing out,” for those of you who don’t watch Broad City, the holy grail of comedy) despite feeling slightly apathetic about the holiday, and I start to feel little pangs of bitterness. It’s not that I feel like I need to rush into a relationship, or feel like I have to participate in the mainstream idea of V-Day shenanigans. I’ve been completely content (to an extent) stuffing my face with chocolate and playing a good video game on this holiday for most of my teen/young adult years, and I’m not angry at the fact that I’ll be doing it yet again.
On the other hand, I wonder if I’m just telling myself all of these things to cope with the fact that Valentine’s Day has been a mild sore spot for several years.
We definitely pay too much attention to the holiday, as a society. That much is beyond true. The concept of celebrating the love between you and a significant other on just one day of the year creates this idea that it must be done, and it must be done BIG on THIS SPECIFIC day, or else the love just isn’t there. Sure, the idea of getting engaged on Valentine’s Day, or going out to the fanciest restaurant to celebrate has its romantic appeal, but the fact that we feel a societal pressure to do it on this ONE day of the year, as opposed to any other day, seems a little bonkers. It makes me wonder how many relationships were ruined because one of the members of a relationship may have flopped on making Valentine’s Day plans. To me, that would be a little extra, but given that advertising companies, combined with the desire for romantic love to be maintained (or created), we feel the need to be as extra as possible about one commercialized holiday.
That being said, do I hate the idea of celebrating the love between you and a significant lover on Valentine’s Day? Absolutely not! Go out on February 14th with that person who makes you swoon (but be sure you have reservations if you’re going to a restaurant, because it’ll get crazy!) Buy them some jewelry. Make this the day that you propose to them. Celebrate it however you want, but do it because it’s what YOU want to do, not what you feel like society is persuading you to do. I don’t think celebrating it the way we do is a problem; I think the fact that society has made it seem like a necessity is what I have a problem with.
Even though I feel this specific way about Valentine’s Day, I think my days of being bitter about the holiday are officially over (well, overly bitter.) I used to hide behind the chocolates and video games as a way of coping with the fact that I had no one to share those joys with, but now I just do it because it’s less detrimental than wondering why I’m still single. If the intended purpose of the holiday is to celebrate love, then why not just make it about self-love? Even if that means grabbing a few friends to join you in chocolates and gaming, make the day about doing something you love. Though it took me a long time to change this mindset, I definitely benefit way more by cultivating self-love on Valentine’s Day than delving into negativity about being single. Of course, I am human, and those feelings of bitterness are bound to come up on this holiday, but that doesn’t mean I have to give into them.
If you’re worried about feeling bitter during this holiday due to being single, here’s a little tidbit of advice that I hope will help. If you start to feel bitter about the fact that you’re single on Valentine’s Day, recognize that bitterness, allow yourself to experience and explore that feeling (because hey, you’re human, and not robots that can be programmed to never feel negative emotions), but ultimately, know that your quality isn’t diminished just because you’re single on a holiday meant for celebrating love.
A mantra that could help you could be something along the lines of “I am worthy of love,” because you are definitely worthy, and believing that will make a world of difference. It might not work immediately (lord knows I’m still working on it), but if you tell it to yourself more and more every day, your words will become reality, and I guarantee you’ll feel way better about yourself, to the point where being single on Valentine’s Day cultivates only positive vibes for you to celebrate.
I’m curious, readers! What are you all doing for Valentine’s Day? Are you and a significant other dining at your favorite restaurant? The trendiest restaurant? The most romantic restaurant? And if you’re single, what kind of shenanigans will you be getting up to? Personally, I think I’m going to either make a dessert for myself or pick one up from somewhere, get into my Deadpool pajamas, indulge in some Resident Evil 7, and celebrate the day by seeing how long it takes me to give up on trying to play the game by myself. There’s nothing more romantic than being alone and terrified in your bedroom, am I right?