Where I stand on Valentine’s day is directly in line with where I stand on my politics and my salsa–somewhere in the middle.
For many years, I found myself as the ring leader behind whole armies of “I hate Valentine’s day” protests with couches full of single sad sallys stuffing their mouths with rhetorical questions and anti-love propaganda. And once, or maybe even twice, I found myself twirling a rose underneath my nose slurping down pasta, beside a man in a button down, on a day that can make any girl feel drunk off love potion number 9.
But this year, when I found myself tip toeing on top of the balance beam of which side to advocate for, I decided to ask myself one question and one question only. What makes V day different than any other day?
It is not as if when the 14th of February comes galloping along, we suddenly wake up from a deep sleep to roll over on our side and realize there is no one occupying the other half of our Egyptian cotton sheets, excavating the crud out of our eyelids while simultaneously spoon feeding us compliments and tiny bites of chocolate chip pancakes–with syrup.
As if on this one day of the year our senses are suddenly heightened making us more aware and ticked off by couples who explore the inside volcanoes of each others mouths, in public. Or the couples who invade our personal space on the subway, pronouncing their undying love for each other so intensely that we notice silivia sneaking out of the edges of their paisley shaped mouths and on to the collar of our sterilized parka.
And so the root of V day is not about wallowing in our current relationship status picking at the petals of a wilting flower over love-me-nots or wishing that we, too, will be spending the evening goggly eyed over a glass of red wine and a dinner that costs half of some hard working guy’s paycheck.
It’s about candy.
A day where it is socially acceptable to pleasure our sweet tooth by popping dozens of sugar coated hearts in our mouth and taste testing a Whitman’s sampler until we are rolling around on the carpet belting out “I Will Always Love You” (by the late Whitney Houston) to empty wrappers and last year’s stuffed teddy bears.
So after I spend the day eating my body weight in red and pink packaged candy, I will dial the digits of the people that rock and roll my life for the rest of the 364 days of the year to just remind them, just to say hello, just to extend to them–thousands of miles away–a verbal testament of the solid reasons why I love to love them and love the love they give me.
It is a day to stuff ourselves silly on giant(chocolate)kisses and be thankful for the unforgettable love that gives our worlds the battery life it needs to power through the toughest of times.
May you find happiness in a day that tosses and turns people’s hearts. Let those candy wrappers pile up!