To Valentine or not to Valentine

Today was Valentine’s Day.

A day when lovers take the time out, to do something special for their lovers. Not that you need a specific day to do so, but this just gives us one more reason.

It is also a day when companies are laughing all the way to the bank considering the amount spent over really expensive gifts, as well as really ridiculous ones: giant hearts and chocolates, confetti, balloons and the like.

It is also a day when otherwise constantly bickering couples take the time out to not-bicker reinforce their delusion of happily ever after.

It is also a day when men can buy a year’s quota of sensitivity, understanding, respect and affection all wrapped up in a teddy bear (holding a heart shaped cushion preferably, or a bunch of red roses)

It is also a time when women can guiltlessly covet ridiculously expensive gifts their men bring, however grudgingly.

It is also an occasion which creates innumerable future occasions for men to bitch about their women, and vice versa.

And, it’s an occasion which warrants single people to pathetically display their joy and pride at being ‘single’ (Yeah like you really had to work hard for it.)

And that’s why I have always hated Valentine’s Day. The show, the charade, the gloss of it all. Ugh. Till now.

I celebrated Valentine’s Day today, for the first time ever. For 23 years, I have watched all the drama and non-sense unfold before me eyes ad nauseum; and I always wondered what I would feel like, celebrating it. Don’t get me wrong, I have always wanted to celebrate it; I was just never sure whether I would find the right reasons to, after witnessing so many wrong ones. I wondered if there’d be roses and teddy bears and romantic candlelit dinners. I wondered if all of these things would feel less ridiculous when they happened to me. More importantly, I wondered if they would happen for the right reasons.

So after years of criticizing Valentine’s Day celebrations, I finally had one of my own. And that’s when it hit me: I wasn’t really celebrating the day, I was celebrating the person I was with. 14th of February was just like an accessory — there for you to celebrate or to ignore, but that you choose to celebrate, because you have a reason to, you have a person to. Celebrate this person you are with, and everything they’ve given to you, the joy they’ve brought, they way they’ve changed you and the pleasure and pride you feel being with them. Sure, you can do it any day — but hey, today was a chance to do it — Did you take it?

I did and I felt joyous, going about it, in a way I had not felt before. Tingly anticipation, the ecstasy of knowing you have a reason to celebrate the occasion, and you’ve grabbed it! The warm assurance of knowing what you are celebrating, and why. The high of having made that person feel special, of having someone you want to make feel special and that wonderful new feeling that makes you feel. The apprehension that this person may also want to celebrate you in the same way, on this day. How wonderful.

But well, not everyone celebrates Valentine’s Day on the same day. I guess sometimes what we really want out of Valentine’s Day is to have someone celebrate us, as much as we’d like to celebrate them.

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