I am not someone St Valentine has been very kind to, so you have to understand that this post is coming from someone who has had some of the worst Valentine's Days ever.
My introduction to the red and pink world, highly promoted by Girlfriend and Dolly (my stack of Bibles until I was 16 and realised they were full of stupid advice and advertising) as someone who had a shot with VD began like this. I had a 'serious boyfriend', in fact we had been together for almost two months which is like forever in high school. I was so excited about finally having a Valentine and one of my friends asked him what he was going to get for me. Yay! Exciting, except he broke up with me the next day.
Seriously St V?
Other dumb VDs continued. In Year 12 I worked on Valentine's, Easter long weekend, Christmas Eve, New Year's Eve (until midnight!!!) and during all the stupid social events my friends and I never went to (oh, except formal). My boyfriend that year said he ordered roses for me and they never arrived. He was lying, but that kind of tainted that year. A lot.
One year, just before I was meant to be getting married to someone else, he was mad at me for something and won't speak to me during our double date, other than accuse me of things, like buying him a chocolate at the bar with drinks because I felt bad about something I said. Then we went back to my place, had a rip-roaring fight and probably should have broken up then and there, BUT my Girlfriend and Dolly days held me back and reminded me that VD was probably not ideal for break ups.
There have been a whole heap of other things which went horribly wrong and I just won't go into those. For the most part, Valentine's Day has been royally painful to me.
I have had some nice days though. A few years in a row uni began on VD and we would usually do something as single girls. When I first most to Balaklava I bought peppermint chocolate, chips and watched 500 Days of Summer. I was dating someone who gave me a lovely day, completely drama free for a change.
Being single on VD means you are sometimes holding out hope that someone will have an oppportunity to approach you, or at least do something nice. This hasn't happened, unless you include the time this creepy guy gave me a piece of lavender from our friend's mum's potpourri bowl, which I don't because he made no effort. And yet I can remember a lot of my male friends doing and giving things on VD to girls they liked, even though sometimes it didn't go down too well. Will I ever forget the time Dale gave Cassie a teddy bear on VD when we were in year 6 and she politely turned it down and he threw it across the room in anger? No, probably not.
But, of course I get to write about how awesome 'Love Day' (as one of my Year 3 students called it) because I'm married. Not really. Being married or with someone doesn't make the day better, in fact it sets you up for all sorts of disappointments, which is why communication really is the key in all relationships. Plenty of my friends don't do anything for the commercial cash grab, and believe me, I understand it. Yeah, you shouldn't need a special day to tell someone they you love them, especially as you do that on a very regular basis. My grandparents never celebrated Valentine's Day but they were the most devoted couple who had all sorts of lovely habits, like saying 'I love you' every day, even if they were mad at each other (which wasn't very often). Honestly though, it is a fun reason to do stuff together. This year will be our fourth 'Love Day' together, and will be very different as usually we go out to dinner at Wallaroo or Port Hughes and this year we are doing movies and San Churros. Om nom nom. And there are corny cards, etc, and hopefully it all comes together smoothly.
I have no easy answers for the naysayers and scoffers, other than please let us loved up and or incredibly hopefuls have a day for tacky cards and a reason to say 'I like you a little bit'.
At the end of the day, I just really love love.