by Olivia Cunning
Valentine's Day is not my favorite holiday.
I know, I know. A romance author should probably keep such things to herself. The idea behind the holiday is nice, but shouldn't we be celebrating love everyday, not just one day out of the year?
I don't hate Valentine's Day, but it has seldom been kind to me. It started in elementary school.
Was I the only one who didn't want to give a Valentine to every jerk in my elementary class?
Of course, there was the secret crush whose card I carefully selected (from a box of 32 similar cards). That Super-Friends card was so heartfelt. And will you just look at the darling heart-shape I used to dot the "i" in my secret crush's name. sigh... Finally, he will know my true feelings. We will live happily ever after. (Yes, I was nine, so what?) But what about the mean kid who eats his boogers and pushed me off the monkey bars? Why did I have to give him a card? I sure didn't want him to be my valentine and there isn't a card in my Super-Friends box that says "Stay away from me, jerk.", though I'm pretty sure that's exactly what Wonder Woman would have said in this situation. Then came the heartbreak of discovering the card I received from my secret crush wasn't nearly as carefully selected and heartfelt as the one I delivered to the "mailbox/paper bag" on his desk, but was, in fact, the same GI Joe card he gave to the booger-eating meanie. And my name was written on the envelope in his mother's handwriting! Does that mean he didn't even select the card recipients himself? Ah, the emotional scars of childhood.
In high school, everyone scrambled to find a boyfriend before V-day. And he better buy a rose from the student council and have it delivered during class or he was in big trouble. This was a great way to make the girls without boyfriends feel like total losers. Cheerleaders-3 roses each. The rest of us-0. The only thing that could possibly be worse is if your parents took pity on you and sent you flowers at school. The horror! I did have a boyfriend in high school, but he went to a different school, so I was stuck in loser-dom on Valentine's Day with no rose.
When I was married, Valentine's Day was expected and more of a chore than a joy and now that I'm single again, it's a big reminder that I'm well... single. I'm convinced that this day was invented to torture me. I have had some nice Valentine's Days. They haven't all been bad. I'm sure some people love this holiday. I'm not one of them.
So Happy Valentine's Day, I guess. What's your favorite thing about this holiday?
Mine's the chocolate that goes on sale for half-price tomorrow. I am not too proud to eat chocolate out of a gaudy red heart that I bought for myself at a discount. No, I am not.
I did promise my fans a Valentine's Day short story, which I posted this morning. It's called Be Mine<--click here to read it for free.
Warning: If you haven't read this book,
the short story has some spoilers.
And if you have... well, these two always make me teary-eyed, so I needed tissue when I wrote it.