As a self-proclaimed ambisocial, cold-hearted individual who prefers being weird over being normal, I am not above celebrating this Hallmark Card occasion. With the day being so close to my birthday, I normally start getting excited around this time of the year. Or I could just be a really being piece of romantic sap… although this is something I am wont to admit.
Being at home cooped up by myself has granted me plenty of time to put my thoughts into sorts. For the most part these thoughts are about my plans for the immediate future and understanding myself more. However, today is different from those days. As I started getting ready to meet my own Valentine’s date, a thought occurred: How did this occasion originate? Ever the history nerd, I started doing a quick research (thanks, Google). Initially, I thought this was a holiday to celebrate the martyred saint, St. Valentine. I didn’t know that it also had historical roots to the Roman festival Lupercalia, where they celebrated the coming of spring with fertility rites and lottery-type matchmaking (https://www.britannica.com/topic/Valentines-Day).
Back in the Philippines, Valentine’s Day is a pretty big deal. Husbands and boyfriends scramble to buy their significant others flowers, chocolates, stuffed animals, etc. Wives and girlfriends on the other hand grace their social media accounts with photos of the sweet things that their baes, mahals, and labs have given or done for them. Just this morning, I already saw tons of said posts on my Facebook and Instagram feeds. And with mushy posts also come posts from the single ones.
I truly think that our sarcastic and self-deprecating sense of humour is a cultural thing. I myself prescribe to that kind of comedy. To balance the sticky sweetness of fluff, I also saw posts of memes and gatherings to celebrate the Single Awareness Day (SAD). Seeing memes like these on my feed were reminders that this holiday should just not be exclusively about couples only:
This occasion should be about an all-encompassing kind love, not just the romantic love. It should be about parental love, sibling love, friendly love, and most importantly, self-love. After all, this is why the saying “Before you can love others, you have to love yourself first” is so important. And sometimes, self-love is also the hardest thing to do. We tend to be so absorbed in making others happy that we fail to look after ourselves. Our tendency is to share ourselves to everyone that we forget to tune in and listen to our own needs.
The purpose of this post is simple: regardless of your marital status, don’t forget to celebrate this day. And it doesn’t have to be expensive either. Go out with your girlfriends, give your parents a hug, have a sibling Netflix date, or treat yourself to a nice warm bath with a glass of wine. No matter how you do it, don’t forget to show and celebrate LOVE. Not just today, but every damn day. Happy Valentine’s Day, friends!