Valentine's Day on My Time
When it comes to Valentine's Day, I turn into a passive-aggressive adolescent, all cynical and defiant. Why should I have to change everything I'm doing on this particular day of the year? Why should I have to spend money on cards and flowers and chocolates to tell the people I love that I love them, when I already show them that I love them every single day? Why should I have to fight every other romance-starved couple in town for the services of one of the three teenagers willing to babysit on Valentine's Day, and then try to snag a reservation at an overpriced and overbooked restaurant? And why should I have to sit and glue lace doilies and Hershey's Kisses to cards for 12 preschoolers, 19 kindergarteners, and 34 fifth graders whose names I don't even know so that my kids have something to give out to their classmates?
I know I'm supposed to do all of this in the name of love. But really ... what's love got to do with it?
I can't change the world, true. And so the cards will go out, each with a Kiss attached. But I can make sure that Valentine's Day in my house is a low-key affair. This February 14th, I'll be staying home. I'll help the kids with their homework, supervise their baths and read them bedtime stories. After they're tucked in, my husband and I will clean up the kitchen, put the toys away and watch a TV show together. What we do—or don't do—when we hit the sheets that night is our business, not Hallmark's. It will likely include the words, "I love you," because that's what we always say before we close our eyes, no matter what the date.
Then, a couple of weeks later, when the florist's prices have gone back down to normal, my husband will bring me home a bouquet of daisies (my favorite) and we'll ask my mother to watch the kids so we can have a date night. That's my ideal Valentine's Day ... and it can happen at any time of the year.