Happy Valentine’s Day everyone.
A lot of people are quite scornful about today and, yes, it has become overly commercialised and tacky but I still love the idea of Valentine’s Day. As many of you may already know, I am a romantic. I love anything to do with romance and hearts and flowers. Ever since I was little I have been captivated by the idea of meeting my prince charming and being swept off my feet.
Of course, I know real love is vastly different to what we see and read about in fiction. Nevertheless, I still think it’s a good idea to dedicate a whole day to love. Valentine’s Day is marketed as all about romance, but love takes many shapes and forms and should be celebrated for all the many ways it can touch our lives.
At one point or another all of us will experience some form of love. Our first concept of love is usually garnered from our parents. I was lucky enough to grow up in a happy home. My parents were married for 30 years and though they could bicker for the world, they were still very much in love.
I always remember my mum telling me that the best advice she ever had was from her own mother. My grandmother told my mum that marriage is like two horses pulling a plough; both have to pull in the same direction in order for it to work. Now that I am older and have been in a relationship for three years, I can fully appreciate just what my gran meant by these words.
Being in a relationship takes work. When I was little I always assumed that love was simple. I never realised that loving someone means learning how to deal with their bad moods, or learning how to admit when you are in the wrong and compromising when you can’t get your own way.
For me, falling in love has taught me how to be a rounder person. I have always had a tendency to be selfish, something I attribute to being an only child. My whole life I have been spoiled and allowed to get my own way. Being with my partner has taught me how to share and to accept that I cannot always get what I want. I honestly do not know how he puts up with me sometimes. I am stubborn and moody and often a little unfair to him.
Loving someone means loving them through good and bad times. If you are lucky enough to find someone who wants to be with you even when you get huffy with them, who thinks you look beautiful even when you have a break out and you haven’t shaved in a few days, then you should cherish that person. Until recently I took my partner for granted, but losing my mum showed me that you should hold the people you love most close. My boyfriend is my rock. He has helped me through the worst period of my life this far and he knows how to make me smile. No one believes in me more than he does. Without him I think I would be a lot more selfish and definitely a lot less happy.
Whether you like the idea of Valentine’s Day or not, use today to show the people you love most just how important they are to you. That doesn’t have to involve buying a gift or taking them out to dinner. Something I’ve learned over the past few months is that words are so much more powerful and meaningful than a gift. Simply saying, ‘I love you’ or ‘Thank you for being in my life’ is worth more than any bunch of roses or fancy meal. It is the little things that really count – making a cup of tea, rubbing their temples when they have a headache, snuggling while you watch TV. That is what love means to me.