It’s nearly February 14th and we all know what that means. An abundance of garish pink and red toned greeting cards in the shops and bunches of red roses for sale at ten times the usual cost. Don’t you just love Valentine’s Day?
It’s not really considered a major holiday event downunder in Australia and New Zealand, however that doesn’t stop the retail merchants doing their best to hook us all into their sales, after all, we all know that the best way to a woman’s heart is diamonds. And chocolate. LOTS of chocolate.
Despite the somewhat fickle nature of this holiday, it still has the ability to trigger mixed feeling for those of us at midlife. We’ve lived through enough seasons and events in our lives to have any one of a range of emotions come to the surface at this time of year. Nostalgia, sorrow, pain, joy, fondness, happiness, love. We’ve tasted the sweet and we’ve tasted the bitter and being bombarded with images of romantic love may very well fall into the bitter camp.
Unless you decide to hide from all forms of media and avoid shopping centres for the first two weeks of February, you won’t escape the Valentine’s illusion – that your life is not complete without being romantically swept off your feet – oh, and fed chocolates of course.
My take on this however?
We’ve heard that saying a dozen times that you don’t need a man to complete you – and as someone who has been married for over 28 years and as much as I am close to my husband and love him – I can testify that this statement is so true. No one person is ever going to totally and completely understand, validate and accept you. Well, no person that is, except yourself and if you are someone who still beats themself up on a regular basis for how much you weigh, how you look, your perceived lack of intelligence or for whatever reason – you are NEVER going to fully be able to accept and love another fully.
Want to experience a happy Valentine’s Day this year regardless of whether you have a partner or not? Then decide this year to be your OWN Valentine. As corny as that sounds, determine to speak well of yourself, to value yourself and to allow yourself the same care and affection you would offer another.
And don’t forget to buy yourself some chocolate!