So, the month of love has come and gone, & I can come out of hiding. I don’t celebrate Valentine’s day. I have found that people who don’t are generally in one of four categories:
1)”Manly men” who have to prove their manliness by having nothing to do with anything whimsical.
2) People who genuinely recognize it for the money making scheme it has become (or always has been, depending on your school of thought), and would rather celebrate their loved ones outside of the allocated day.
3) Bitter people.
And 4) Those who actually would love to celebrate it, but tell themselves and anyone who will listen that they don’t care about it because well, roses lose their whimsical lustre if you send them to yourself.
I though, am in a category I am yet to find someone else in too. I LOVE romance, & whimsey, & surprises, & dreamy magical places & experiences. Nostalgic gifts & hand written letters are all right up my ally (Anyone who knows me personally probably would be surprised by this. Tomboy Zoe who keeps her nails short and can’t stand weaves?? NO! Haha). I don’t like flowers, they make me sneeze, & most of them smell bad, but there are these mini sunflower/daisy things that grow on the side of the road along most freeways here that just make me So happy. How does that work? I just said I hate flowers. I don’t know. But I’ll marry the man who parks his car on the side of the road to pick one of those for me.
I never celebrated Valentines day for two reasons, the first and most obvious being that I’ve been single for most of my adult life. The second is a sore one. The one Valentines day I was in a relationship, I knew the guy I was dating, and celebrating that day would lead to nothing but disappointment and tears. I always say that whoever gets that guy in the end is a lucky girl because he really is such a gem. I just wasn’t his target audience.
So, I come home from work having been surrounded by an endless amount of roses, heart shaped chocolates and old people being extra annoying (I worked at an old age home that posed as a country club. The members were survivors of the flood) Anyway, I digress. I get home & sit in front of the TV with my housemate ready for an episode of Game of Thrones when, there is a knock on the door. On the other side of it is a very nervous looking Irishman. I let him in albeit a little surprised because I really wasn’t expecting to see him that night.
He mumbles something about how he knows I said I don’t celebrate Valentine’s day, but he has something that will make me happy…I internally roll my eyes because I just knew what was to follow was the expectation of me being nice about a really lame, NOT thought out gift he just picked up somewhere, probably within the last hour. But I’d have to be nice because this guy is a sweetheart with the kind of spirit you Never want to crush because he’s just so genuine. Whatever the lame gift he’s about to pull out of that backpack he carries everywhere is, that’s about as good as it gets. So I took a breath and told my inner self to chill. And out it came, the ugliest looking garage…well this was in America so Gas Station? Yes, gas station rose & the weirdest looking ball of fluff which I presume was meant to be a teddy bear…I wanted to burst into tears. Mostly because of the many many questions I was holding in like “What is this?” “You know I hate flowers right? So what reaction did you expect from this” “When you think of me, This is what you feel I deserve?” “This shit is making me sneeze, do have kleenex in that backpack?”
I realise that that whole story does NOT paint me in a positive light. “What an ungrateful shrew this girl is” is what I would think while reading it. And that is fair.
Here’s my thing though, “It’s the thought that counts” sooo…what is the thought behind giving your girlfriend something that you know she hates…
I’m almost impossible to please, my head is FULL of romantic scenes from movies, Pinterest & Tumbler & crazy things that most guys would Never even think about! So, to eliminate the expectation & the pressure, I just cancel the day as a whole. I found that that made me appreciate all the other 364 days with him more.
He always carried that backpack, & when he started dating me, he always put an extra hoodie in there no matter how hot the day was because he noticed that the slightest breeze has me shivering like a Chihuahua. He always brought me food. Out of the blue. If he was at the shop buying whatever & decided he wanted a sweet, he’d buy two. If that’s not love, I have no Clue what is.
Someone tweeted “People don’t understand the emotional significance of finding someone who understands you”. And this is So true. He was so thoughtful, and I was so grateful for it. But I never felt understood. He just didn’t Get me.
If he did, he would have bought me nothing and just taken me for a stroll so we could just chat about everything and nothing, or just walk in silence..
What I want seems so huge it’s almost impossible. But if I can open my mouth & take a breath to express an obscure opinion, & my best friend unwittingly beats me to it & says the exact obscure thing I was thinking, well, why wouldn’t the romantic version of that exist out there somewhere?
I want to inspire & be inspired! I want a love as simple as it is complicated. I cannot date for the sake of dating, I want to understand & be understood. Be someones haven.