A New Kind of Valentine's Day

January 28, 2015 11:03 PM

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A New Kind of Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day. For years, the mere utterance of the words caused waves of self-doubt and angst to run through my body. My childhood and young adulthood were filled with disappointing memories of the day. I remember as a small child hiding the few Valentines I had received in class, while other girls proudly displayed their wealth of admiration upon their desks. In high school, I was most definitely not one of the girls who had balloons or roses by their locker from a secret admirer. Even in later years when in relationships, the big V never lived up to its expectations. Just when I would be feeling good about the quiet dinner plans my boyfriend had made for us, a coworker would receive an enormous floral delivery to their desk. When newly married, I would try not to be disappointed when my husband had clearly bought me flowers or a card at the last minute, but I couldn't help myself. As the years have passed, I certainly have learned that the acts of kindness your partner bestows upon you throughout the year mean much more than their performance on this one overpriced and overrated observance. True love is most apparent on the days that are the most ordinary or the most difficult. And even if you are not in a relationship, there are opportunities to receive and give love everywhere if you look. But unfortunately, many disappointing Valentine's Days had passed before I had learned these lessons.

Such was my distaste for this holiday that when I had children of my own, I was determined to start new traditions. I thought that if I turned the focus away from the cupid perspective and towards the love that is present with family and friends, my children might somehow escape the unreasonable exp...

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