Did you read that right? Yep, I have no problems being single on Valentine's Day. I even prefer it that way. To all you single folk who aren't looking forward to the day, please read on!
I've lived through Valentine's Days single, as part of a couple, and even engaged (in 2002). Some will find this odd, but of the men I've met and dated so far, I have actually been happier on the single Valentine's Days than the coupled ones.
The reason? I find the single Valentine's Days tend to lack two emotions -- disappointment occasionally even sprinkled with a dash of anger! And I have quite a few married female friends who have expressed the same emotions to me.
Valentine's Day is largely cooked up.
There are days designated to celebrate other things, so why not manufacture a day to celebrate love? While we should celebrate love every day (I feel, especially after surviving Stage 4 cancer at age 33 -- yeeg!), in the time leading upto V-Day we receive constant messages from any store you walk into that your loves (in particular of the romantic sort) should receive any or all of the following: cards, candy, flowers, gifts, a day at the spa, a larger-than-life stuffed animal, a romantic dinner, a proposal, a getaway, etc.
This makes some mad: "She/he knows I love them. Why do I have to buy into this and get extra things for the day?" So they don't. They opt out of participation or boycott the "festivities."
I think, because mostly everyone else does it. Even if your love says they don't want anything, they may change their mind as flowers and other goodies roll into the office throughout the day. There is a bit of feeling left out. Social media exacerbates this feeling with others posting showing, "Look what I got!"
Too many Valentine's Days I have been disappointed - even by what was done - call me picky. Let me be clear: it's not about showering me with gifts; a simple but really heartfelt expression of love from someone I deeply love would work just fine. And that's part of the problem; I haven't spent V-Day with anyone where I'm excited enough about our relationship hence some of the disappointment. I prefer to say I just haven't found the right one yet. But I've realized in my upper 30's if I never do, I'm perfectly ok with that. Better single than settling? I like being on my own and doing my own thing. I plan my own fun treats and there's no disappointment that way. And life is still filled with lots of love so in no way do I feel lonely.
This post isn't "single girl trying to feel better about being alone bashing Valentine's Day" though, but if it helps you sleep at night to think so, then by all means go ahead. I have friends who have found deep and lasting romantic love, and I'm nothing but happy for them. If you're in a relationship and happy, then I'm happy for you. Cancer reminded me life is truly too short to be anything but happy all the moments you can!
This post is intended to bring comfort to those who are upset about being alone on Valentine's Day.
I'm saying to you there are definitely worse things, like being in a facade of a relationship, a relationship where you're taken for granted and will be disappointed by the lack of love expressed on V-Day, or a relationship where you don't reciprocate your significant other's feelings (just not that into them), etc.
The great thing about romantic love and marriage though is it's a window of opportunity that never closes. Unlike your child-bearing years, which can only last so long, I could (and often think I will) live my happy lady single life, and then proceed to find "the one" in the nursing home in my 80s, and say "Come on Sonny! I've never done this marriage thing." I can tie the knot next year, in my 80's, or never.
Let the psychoanalysis of this post begin, as everyone has an opinion! After founding "Cancer with Joy" since my name is Joy and I faced stage four cancer (mostly) with a positive attitude even while suffering the complete loss of my shoulder-length hair, I'm used to a healthy and respectful debate over my thoughts and ideas. Often those who just hear "Cancer with Joy" standing alone question this idea quite understandably saying, "What does that mean? You want me to be happy about having cancer?"
(They don't often realize I've been there myself at first.) I respond with what has become my theme:
"No, no one is happy they have cancer. But you can have cancer & still be happy! The good news is cancer doesn't have to steal your joy! You can discover how to face 'Cancer with Joy' -- quite literally as well as figuratively!" Then they are excited and hopeful, because everyone wants to be happy.
So this Valentine's Day I am happy as I celebrate all the loving relationships in my life, not just of the romantic variety. I find I am in fact much happier doing my own thing as a single person not feeling disappointed or angry at the end of the day like many in relationships who hope to be celebrated only to find they are taken for granted a la "You know I love you. Why do I have to say it all the time or show it?"