Ah, February 14th – truly one of the most manic, bipolar days of the year. It seems that every year, as we inch closer to the second week of February, the world becomes split into two distinct, rival camps – the ridiculously over-the-top, scream-it-from-the-rooftops-that-I-am-in LOVE couples and the cold cynics who hate any display of warmth, affection, good manners, or kindness on any day even nearing the 14th.
When it comes to my views on Valentine’s Day, I agree with The Oatmeal – the worst part is not all the reminders that you are alone and unloved (because you aren’t! I love you, readers!) but the people who feel the need to shout their distaste for love in your face and remind you incessantly that they hate Valentine’s Day.
I get it – for many people, it’s not fun to be reminded that you be missing something in your life that you want or need, but to be honest, I think it’s nice to have a day out of the year where we can be reminded of the power of love. I like to embrace the universal feeling of love – the kind of love that not only comes from a romantic relationship (or at least the pleasing euphoria of lust) but the love that is borne out of kindness, consideration, and respect for others.
I spend a fair amount of time on this blog complaining – and while I know that I have an amazing circle of family and friends to help me through what is turning out to be a pretty insane decade of my life, I’m not always as vocal or appreciative of how much love I have in my life and how lucky I feel to be surrounded by such a loving group of people. In that spirit, here are a list of things I love on this Valentine’s Day:
- I love my mother for coming into town quarterly to help me shut down bars and go shopping for ridiculous fragrances
- I love my father for email bombing me with on-line petitions and sneaking in the occasional “women’s issue” email because he “knows it’s important to me”
- I love my baby sister, for always making me laugh both intentionally (parental imitations, mocking me, wordplay) and unintentionally (tipsy tweeting)
- I love my friends, for indulging in my 1,000 word emails, usually sent in multiple throughout the day, and generally responding with advice like “let him put it in you” or “it’s not too late to run away to the circus”
- I love that, even in 20 degree weather and with less than a few hours notice, I can get together a fairly impressive trivia team
- I love my co-workers, especially the ones who keep candy trays on their desks and never even raise an eyebrow if I make a half-dozen visits during the day
- I love the guy at the Metro Station, who hands out the WaPo Express and never fails to compliment my smile or my outfit or my manners, and manages to always boost my spirits without being creepy
- I love the doctors I work for, who dedicate every minute of the day to caring for others, to putting their needs second always to the needs of the patients, and for still managing to be friendly and warm to the staff
- I love how nice people in the District can actually be, especially if you flash them a smile
- I love that I have a little corner of the Internet to write and muse and complain and be silly and that you guys actually come here and read it and write me and make me feel less alone
Sure, there are things I would probably love to be able to list (I’d love having no financial woes, I’d love to help make my friend’s troubles disappear, I’d love to be able to tell my heart exactly what to feel) but all things considered, there is a lot of love in my world – and hopefully in yours!
Happy Valentine’s/Anna Howard Shaw Day!
Post-script: Speaking of love, I love love love our fearless post-collegiate for this week! Be sure to check back in the next day or two for our in-depth interview – it’s going to be a great one!