Dear Lucy: It's here again. Valentine's Day. The TV and movie theaters are paying homage. The department stores, the TV, radio and all other advertising mediums are on it too. Young love, old love, freaky love, miraculous love. It's all there, just tune in. But I have not had a Valentine in years and don't expect to find one between now and Valentine's Day. I know I can spend time with friends, by myself, watching the love movies and God knows what. But how do I handle just one more "love" holiday by myself.
– No Valentine
Dear No Valentine: I have spent a lot of Valentine's Days by myself too. I also have lots of wonderful, successful friends who also don't claim to have a sweetheart on this day. Some are widowed, divorced, single by choice, too busy to date, just can't find that right guy or girl, or in between sweethearts. Some of my friends are happy about being unattached and some are not. There are hundreds of reasons for being by oneself any and every day.
But here is how I think about it:
1. It's just a day. So I handle it the same way I handle every other day without the sweetheart that the TV, Hallmark or the movie says I should have. I won't look for the card, the candy, the flowers or the date that won't happen. If I want any of that I'll just mosey out and get it for myself or go out with friends. I will remember me today the same way I remember and honor myself everyday.
2. I remember that this is a made up, retailers holiday. That means it is designed to do whatever will maximize sales of some particular products. Some of the same thing happens at Christmas, Easter, Father's Day and Mother's Day. Yet, in the end, only I get to decide how to feel about the day. There is nothing about any day that should make me feel less than God's beloved creation. Nothing made up can be allowed to make me ever feel alone, sad or unimportant.
3. I remember that I can always pick up the phone and call everyone I know and wish them a wonderful, love-filled day.
4. If I can carve out the time, I can go and visit the ones I know who didn't ask to be alone on this day...the ones living in places where every day is a reminder of not having the luxury of mobility, phones, texting, paid light bills, hot meals and other expressions of love and security.
5. I will respect and be happy for all of those people who have sweethearts, get flowers, candy, cards, even diamonds! I will sincerely rejoice for them.
6. Remember that in 24 hours it will be just another day again. In fact, I will remember that in some countries they don't even celebrate this holiday!
All we ever have is NOW. And just in case I do get a sweetheart or just some folks I love, I give them the very best of my own way of expressing caring every moment that I can. I do it knowing that it will come back to me in whatever way I need it the most.
And another thing, if I really do want a sweetheart, I remember to never stop hoping and believing that the right one is somewhere out there hoping for me too. And whatever or however I want him to be, I spend my time developing those same qualities in myself.
Happy Valentine's Day to all,