Until four years ago, I used to dread Valentine’s Day if I found myself single on that day. I would feel pangs of sadness watching co-workers have flowers delivered to work or to see couples being mushy. However, it would amuse me to see men run into Walgreen’s on Valentine’s day to get their loved ones a last-minute Valentine’s Day gift.
I don’t know about you, but I was putting too much into one day. Getting something or being with someone on Valentine’s Day did not mean I was any less loved or important. Truth be told, receiving something on Valentine’s Day doesn’t mean you are loved either–if that person can’t show you they love you on the other 364 days of the year, then what does that say about their love for you?
Four years ago, I had enough of feeling sorry for myself and I decided to take back Valentine’s Day and create it into something I could love. I decided that whether I was single, dating, or in a relationship, that I would do something for someone else. After I committed to that in my mind, I immediately felt better. I looked forward to Valentine’s day and planning something special for people who are dear to me.
The first Valentine’s Day after I made that declaration, I cooked dinner for all of my guy friends. It was a sit down affair and I cooked three courses for them and served them. No buffet dinner for them. All of the men who attended were people who had supported me through my PhD process. Whether personal or professional advice, these men had my back. Cooking for them was a way for me to show them how much I appreciated them.
Last Valentine’s Day, I took it up a notch. I threw a wine and dessert party and invited all of my single female classmates at Johns Hopkins. We reserved a community space in this apartment complex that a lot of them stayed at and had great fellowship. We affirmed each other, danced and overall just had lots of fun.
This Valentine’s Day, I was moved to have a small intimate gathering. So tomorrow, some of my female friends will be coming over and I have planned an extravagant dinner. (I will blog about the food at a later point this weekend. I don’t want to ruin the surprise they are in for). They were charged with bringing wine and chocolate. I even created a Valentine’s Day Spotify list filled with positive music about love.
Doing things for other people on Valentine’s Day has made me feel wonderful. Even more wonderful than getting something from a person that I might have been in a relationship with on that day. The bottom line is that I learned that Valentine’s Day isn’t just for people coupled up. It is for us singles as well. Valentine’s day is the day to show yourself love and love to others. To really practice that agape love that is detailed in the Bible.
If you are single, don’t let society make you feel bad about it. Be like me and take control of Valentine’s Day. Make it yours. You will begin to look forward to it like I do 🙂