In this article, my intention is very simple and I’ll lay it out for you from the very beginning: I’m going to defend Valentine’s Day. Is it because it is my favorite holiday? No, it isn’t. My favorite holiday is Christmas (because of the presents). More than that, I have a tendency to be single on Valentine’s Day, so in the past I’ve been known to take myself out and receive flowers from my girlfriends. Even so, I feel sorry for St. Valentine and his day.
Every year, on the 14th of February, when I open Facebook, I find posts of this sort: “Oh, Valentine’s Day is such a shallow celebration. It is so commercial.”…
Or, because I am from Europe, some go like this: “It is an American thing, why are we celebrating it anyway?”…
Even more so, it just happens that, in my country, Romania, we have our own holiday to celebrate love and romance. It happens on the 24th of February and it is called Dragobete. So you’ll have those who, out of huge patriotic pride, of course, will say: “We have our own day to celebrate love, why do we have to copy Americans? Ever since the fall of Communism we’ve been copying. We are losing our identity, when our traditions are so beautiful.”
I understand all these arguments and concerns, I really do. But in response to all of this, I have two things to say:
1.Anything in this world will only have the meaning you attach to it.
Why is Valentine’s Day commercial? Are shopkeepers wrong for trying to make a living? If you don’t want to buy anything, then don’t! You can make your own card. Take a piece of paper, cut a heart out of it and color it red with a pencil. Then write ‘I love you’ on it, or something. Improvise! Your partner will surely appreciate your DIY effort.
You are too broke to go to a restaurant? Go for a picnic then! Make your own sandwiches! Are you single and you find it hard to enjoy a holiday that is supposed to be for couples? Nonsense! Go out, treat yourself, take yourself on a date! Dedicate this day to self-love, self-care and to the relationship you have with yourself!
Besides, if you are one of those people who see Valentine’s Day as a commercial holiday meant to increase the profits of the flower vendors, maybe you need to ask yourself: why is this everything you are seeing? You can choose to change your perception and to see something else. Why not see an occasion to go out on a special date or to a special place? We are getting way too ‘busy’ these days to do special things for ourselves and for each other…
2.If it is about love, let us freaking celebrate it!
The sad truth is that our world is getting more depressed, more cynical and more pissed off by the minute. So yes, if we have an occasion to celebrate love, I say let’s take it! Let us remember how it feels to be soft and warm at heart! Let us allow ourselves to be surrounded by ridiculous plush toys and uplifting red color everywhere! And I don’t even like red, but we all need a splash of color in our lives, once in a while.
So instead of coming with arguments on social media to why Valentine’s Day is not worth our time, let us instead come with arguments to why we should love more. Let’s take this opportunity to express love for everybody: for our spouses, for our partners, for our friends and neighbors, for family and strangers, for all beings and for the entire Universe. We live in a world where we need love more than anything. So I say, let’s stop hating and let’s start celebrating!