When I was a kid, Valentines Day was a special day. We brought shoe boxes to school and we spent time in class decorating them. We made Valentine cards for each class member and one for the teacher. I analyzed which card to give to a cute boy – is this too forward? Is this too platonic? In return, I analyzed the cards that I received. It was an exciting day.
In high school and in college, Valentines Day took on a different feel. Not everyone got Valentines. My friends and I thought we were pretty funny when we wore all black on February 14 (a story that I told my teenaged daughter and it was met with an eye roll and a “yeah, everyone does that.”) Some girls got showy displays of affection (flowers, lockers decorated). I usually wore black.
I met my husband after college. Luckily, he knows that I am thoughtful, but I have never been a particularly romantic person. But I did understand that couples give each other things on Valentines Day. I was quite pleased with my choice of a gift for him — a toothbrush to keep at my place. It was sort of romantic and sort of practical. I haven’t given him a thoughtful Valentines Day gift since!
Since having kids, we have spent February 14th at Tae Kwon Do tests, birthday parties, PTA meetings, gymnastics events, swimming pools, hockey rinks. My husband is more romantic than I am and he still insists on giving me candy and flowers, but really, I don’t need them. I have it pretty good 365 days a year. No candy or flowers necessary.