Valentine’s Day has always been one of my favorite holidays – I would rank it right after my birthday and right before Christmas. Long before boyfriends, flowers or feats involved to prove the depths of one’s love – I loved Valentine’s Day. My earliest memories include a Dad who brought home one of those huge cards with the lace and satin for my Mom, the largest Russell Stover heart and the smaller version for me (I am sure he bought my sister one, but I have blocked that part of this story out – it’s my blog!).
I loved picking out the assortment of Valentines for the class – the kind with one special one for the teacher included. I am sure they were mostly Barbie themed, with Batman, The Beatles and The Monkees thrown in depending on the year. Our class always had a Valentine’s Mailbox and in the later years of grade school I am sure it was primarily a vehicle for candy and finding out the class crushes. In my all girls high school the celebration continued in that there was a major emphasis on decorating and having class parties (yes, I picked the perfect school for me!).
I remember the first Valentine’s Day I spent with my husband. My then boyfriend walked through the door with a dozen pink roses and – wait for it – the largest pink satin heart filled with chocolates you could imagine. It was a sure sign that this one was a keeper! Not because of the beauty or the size of the gifts as much as the fact that without knowing about it he recreated my idealized childhood ideal of what it meant to have a Valentine.
Years have gone by and we have celebrated in the most extravagant ways, we have also sat with each other being sick, a few bouts of morning sickness thrown in, and then the amazing celebrations with our children. Most importantly over the years the celebration became more and more focused on the meaning of the day – a day to celebrate and honor love in all its many forms. With maturity you learn that love isn’t measured by the gift, but by the day in and day out of being there for each other. True love is so much bigger than two people – it’s opening your hearts to children, to family, to friends, to those in need. It is supporting your partner to be the person they dream of being, while being responsible to continue to grow and learn yourself.
And then, when all is said and done, it’s also about the shoes!! xoxoxo