||[Feb. 3rd, 2012|12:16 pm]
Right, so I headed up to bed at 9pm, so that I could get to bed early, maybe get 7 hours of sleep. But I got to writing about Root…and then made the mistake of checking my inbox and seeing an invite to an anti-valentine’s day party from a friend, full of righteous “Valentine’s Day sucks and we single people have to unite and…” sort of tongue in cheekish…|
But still. I LOVE being single on Valentine’s Day. Admittedly, my ex made it difficult to enjoy Valentine’s Day. He has many wonderful qualities, but was never much of a gift-giver, never good at remembering even the de rigueur holidays, like Valentine’s Day. I think even before we were married I saw a card that read on the outside “Do you know what Valentine’s Day would be without sex?” and on the inside “If I don’t get chocolate and flowers, you’re going to find out.” I bought a dozen of them. Which some of you might argue, right there, in a nutshell, was proof as to why it didn’t work out. OR, proof as to why we managed to stay together for over 20 years. You decide.
Somewhere there’s a dividing line between being forthright about what you want and being controlling. OBVIOUSLY, my internal GPS is still trying to figure out where that is. But still, after several years of getting giant bouquets of expensive red roses, that would inevitable droop after two days…I hinted that really, I was just as happy with simple non-traditional flowers, like daisies, tulips, iris, carnations, something easy to find. So the next year I got white gladiolus. Wow. The one single flower…in my family, that would be what we call The Funeral Flower. As in, “well, a lovely house really, but honestly, an entryway with a big vase of Funeral Flowers, like someone just died. I kept thinking I’d turn the corner and there’d be the coffin”. (I’ve told you, I am just a pale imitation of my female ancestors. I am the most non-judgmental of my line.)
And I didn’t say anything…but by the third year, I thought, okay, clearly he’s going to buy these for the rest of my natural life. But I didn’t want to say anything, so I actually set up a girlfriend to casually drop that my favorite flower in the whole world was tulips. (Which is not actually true – but I figured, hey, this time of year, that’s the EASIEST and most likely flower to find – because when I’m controlling, at least I’m THOUGHTFUL.) So, then followed a decade of white tulips. Sigh. But you know what, he was trying, so okay.
But when we split up, that first Valentine’s Day, I was like a kid in a candy store…or an adult woman at the florist, I guess. I picked out the flowers I wanted. And then I marched over to the actual candy store and got the chocolates that I wanted. And the main course I wanted, the veg…the wine…the dessert.
And went home and had the most self-indulgent evening EVER. Now I’ve never been single for very long (I know, cry me a river, right?)…but even happy in a relationship, I long to be single on Valentine’s Day. Admittedly, given my background, Self-Indulgence and I have only a passing acquaintance…so it IS a big treat for me. I suppose if you indulge your whims all of the time, the thrill might not be there.
And yes, it IS wonderful to have someone to share your life with. Although sharing a mediocre meal in a restaurant where the chef’s got the night off and it’s the B Team preparing your food and bitter waitstaff trying to turn your table as quickly as possible, and there’s that whole compulsory activity element to it…hmph, I’m not sold.
However you find yourself this Valentine’s Day, if you’re hoisting the bitter flag, for crying out loud, put it DOWN. Do something for YOU and stop waiting, depending on someone else to do it for you. Think of the people that YOU love and do something nice for them – not necessarily on Valentine’s Day, but plan it out for later.
But love yourself first and best. You deserve it.