It’s once again the most lovable holiday of the year. Everywhere you look, Hallmark is taking it’s giant red and pink fist and cramming heart shaped boxes of Russell Stover chocolates and stuffed animals down the throats of the masses. If you’re not one half of a happy partnership, February 14th can easily be considered the loneliest holiday of the year. Not this year though. Us single folks are not only going to breeze through the international day of love, we are going to enjoy it as much, if not MORE than our coupled-up counterparts.
For starters, when stripped of all the mushy notions that have been fabricated by the card and candy industry and taken back to it’s roots, Valentine’s Day is actually a SUPER dark and twisted celebration. According to NPR.org, the holiday began with the Romans celebrating the feast of Lupercalia from Feb.13th-15th. During this time, drunk and naked men would sacrifice a goat and a dog, after which all the women would line up to have fertility whipped into them with the hides of the just-deceased carcasses. It is also believed the Romans were responsible for the naming of the holiday, due to Emperor Claudius II’s execution of two separate innocent men named Valentine on February 14th in the 3rd century AD. The Catholic church subsequently decided to honor their martyrdom by naming the day after the slain men. Who knew Valentine’s day was so brutal and dare I say…metal!?
Now that we’ve somewhat taken the romance out of the holiday, it’s time to acknowledge that everyone, no matter how alone in the world they feel, is blessed with a built-in soulmate and it is YOU. Before you can totally accept, process and reciprocate love from another outside source, you have to be totally in love and infatuated with yourself. So take this day to do to show your one true love just how awesome they are and give yourself some special treatment. Pamper yourself with a long, hot bubble bath. Prepare a candlelit dinner, or take yourself to your favorite restaurant. Buy a bottle of wine and a card and write yourself a note complimenting and highlighting all the things that make you an amazing human being. Get a massage. The point is to just indulge yourself with the kind of pampering you deserve instead of waiting around on someone else to do it. I promise, us singles are going to have a much easier time figuring out gifts for ourselves than those who are guessing at what to get their significant others.
Since this is a day of love, it is also a great reason to send a little love and appreciation to those around us who may not be a romantic interest, but are so important nonetheless. Send a card to your parents saying thank you for their unconditional love, or better yet, drop it off in person with a sweet treat from a local bakery. Grab another single friend and take them out for a Palentine’s or Galentine’s date night. You can both enjoy all the couples specials that are offered on the holiday without all the pressure to make things exactly right and perfect. If you have a pet, stop by a pet store and get them a little something special. There is no one who will appreciate a treat as much as your canine companion. Or just go out of your way to be kind to someone who might be struggling that day. It costs $0 to tell someone they look nice or that you like their hair, and the smile you get in return for making their day will be worth a million bucks in return. You could also load up on cheap gifts from the Dollar Tree and spend the day distributing them and volunteering at a nursing home, where so many people are in desperate need of love and attention.
No one ever mandated that St.Valentine’s Day was only meant to be enjoyed by people in happy relationships. Love is universal. It is the one thing besides death that is the great equalizer and accessible to all, regardless of status. At some point all of us will experience love and, sadly, heartbreak in one form or the other. Love is the one thing that transcends time, economic class, gender or even species. It can be observed across the world in infinite variations of itself, but it never dies. Love is the most powerful force in this universe. It has the capability to repair nations, or when it seems lost, to cripple a human being. In closing, just know this: no matter your relationship status or where you are in this world or what has happened to you, you are still capable and worthy of love. This energy only grows by being transferred. So don’t be afraid to start by falling totally, completely and madly in love WITH YOURSELF. From that point, you’ll have an excess to pour into everyone around you. I hope everyone enjoys this holiday and, worst case scenario, I heard that Hooters has free boneless wings for us lonely singles 😊