It’s two days after Valentines’ Day, and the holiday’s warmth is already beginning to fade. Restaurants count their profits from the night before as local stores replace their decorations and radio music in preparation for the next holiday. Students return to class, and online media sources wrap up their final comments on the holiday before moving on to their next big topics.
It’s a bit of a shame that the world is moving on so quickly from Valentines’ Day. It was nice to look back onto my memories of V-days past and spend the day thinking about what Valentines’ Day meant for me. I read up on old-school romances through Cornell’s Big Red Love series. I saw single men and women advocate for self-love and celebrate bachelorhood. I reminisced with my boyfriend over how our relationship has grown over the past year. It was all very nice, but now that the day is over and the craziness of my own Valentines’ Day plans has finally subsided, I’m left wondering what happened this year on Valentines’ Day. Among all the stories of past romances, the one narrative I missed was how people this year continued to show that love to their families and lovers.
For the critics of V-day, I’m sure that the idea of listening to others describe how they gave or received gifts on Valentines’ Day is especially cringe-inducing and dreadful. However, being someone who not only enjoys talking about the good things in her life but also hearing about the fortunate events in others, I really wish there was more of a discussion about it. Sure, there may be some people who will take this opportunity to brag or gloat. Nevertheless, I feel like hearing these stories will not only continue spreading the warmth and love of Valentines’ Day beyond its 24-hour mark but also refocus our attention on how people can share love now, in the present day. In a world where there is such little faith that romance and chivalry still thrives, reminders that people are in love today as well as in the past may serve us some good.
So, in the spirit of the day after Valentines’ Day, I invite my readers to share their V-Day stories in the comments below. What did you do yesterday in order to show your loved ones that you still care? Did you go out with a lover, call a friend or family member, or spend the day loving yourself and promoting a cause? Share with me your stories and I will share with you mine–how I spent V-Day with my boyfriend and how I spent V-Day advocating for equality. Together, maybe we can inspire each other to think of the message of Valentines’ Day in terms of the present and not just the past.