Valentine’s Day first made an impressive entry into my knowledge and consciousness as a naive teenager trying to understand why this older girl was coaching me on getting her a gift on a particular day. I recall the unusual buzz surrounding that day then. Years later, I now know it was ‘love’ that filled the air . . . . or was it?
This memory of yesteryear set in motion a tantalizing thought. It hit me unexpectedly and forcefully dragged me into a chamber of mesmerizing imaginations that seemed to defy conventional thinking.
It birthed a question that came to me in a very simple form. ‘What would you expect on valentines’ Day if you were a female?’ It felt like Steve Harvey’s book, ‘Think like a Man, act like a lady’, except that the ‘roles’ are now switched a bit: ‘Think like a lady, but act like a gentleman!’. . . of course on Valentine’s Day!
So here’s what I would expect, if I were female!!!
A meaningful whisper of, “I will always love you”! Maybe a personalized handwritten note assuring me that, “You are my Valentine EVERYDAY”! No funfair, no pump, no theatrics!!
Seriously!! That will do it for me.
If my man got me all the accoutrements that pop culture declares show love for me on Valentine’s Day, I would not be impressed one bit! It will tell me nothing!
First, the whole world is making noise about this as an obligation during this time. There is a whole industry preying on our emotions and manipulating us to spend ourselves into oblivion with the deception that chocolate, cards, flowers and K-Y Jelly are equal to love.
It doesn’t take much effort to ‘show your love’ during this highly charged ‘day of love’.
Second, this public way of celebrating something as private and sacred as the love of two individuals devalues true love in the most perverse way!
I’m not female and don’t think Valentine’s Day is an exclusive domain of women drinking at the well of love dug by their men.
Personally, I enjoy the mushy, teary eyed, blushing, heart-throbbing, fire-in-the-bone ‘I-love-yous’.
But Love is more than just that!
Real love contrary to popular notions is an expression of the deepest appreciation for another person; it is a passionate awareness of his or her needs and longings for the past, present and future. It is not self-centered, rather generous and caring. And these are not attitudes one just “falls” into, as though tumbling into a trench, and then celebrated on a particular day!
The measure of love is being able to willingly lay down one’s life for another. This means more than just dying for someone. It includes sacrificing your best for another. Forfeiting the best in the interest of another. This is the love we as humans are created for, and many long for!
The popular culture with the help of the entertainment industry misinforms people about love and its meaning. It is important to know that the exhilaration is not always present, that people will not be perfect and that maintaining a good relationship requires a huge amount of selflessness, giving, forgiving, and patience.
So, enjoy the chocolate, savor the aroma of the roses and do well to remember that, the only lasting fragrance of love is God’s, demonstrated by those who truly choose to become ‘delivery systems’, consciously gushing all over you even when you don’t deserve it. Not only on the 14th day of February but 365 1/25 days a year!
So how would you like to show and/or be shown love this Valentine’s Day?
This Post was first published on my personal website here.