As a veteran single gal I spent many a Valentine's Day alone and dateless watching other women gushing over roses sent to the office while they twittered excitedly about engagement rings and candlelit dinners.
Of course I wasn't single for that long without recieving my fair share of cheap teddy bears, heart shaped Whitman's samplers, awkward greeting cards addressed to "My Special Friend" and single red roses wrapped in plastic tubes purchased as an afterthought from a stooped over old lady selling them from a bucket in a bar (a single wed wose, how womantic). These empty gestures almost always seem to be followed by the inevitable break up.
Valentine's Day = bitter disappointment
MDH shared my feelings about this trumped up Hallmark holiday and I was enchanted.
I was astounded.
MDH always looks as if he has just stepped out of the dress shirt section of the Eddie Bauer catalog. Starched button down shirts with pressed khaki pants and polished dress shoes is his standard uniform. He is very put together and corporate looking, always freshly shaved and not a hair out of place. He dressed this way for our dates, even when we went drinking at dive bars or out for pizza slices and it was a welcome change to the sorts of bewhiskered slacker clowns I had become accustomed to dating. He was a well groomed breath of fresh smelling Irish Spring air.
Honestly? He seemed a little too perfect. It was intimidating.
We were at the stage in our courtship where we had become intimate, confessed a true and deep emotional connection to one another and had spoken out loud that we each saw this relationship as "really going somewhere". But our love was still quite new and although we had been open minded in the boudoir, we were still getting to know each other and had not yet reached that place where either one of us had admitted to the other or to ourselves that we were human.
The man gave every indication that he believed I was a goddess and I planned to keep it that way for as long as possible, which meant a closed bathroom door and gaseousness in all forms supressed. That fart, and the fact that he waited to release it until he thought I wouldn't hear it, spoke volumes about his high opinion of me and I was honored.
But at the same time I realized I could finally relax and then I couldn't resist...
Me: Did you just fart and then pretend like you didn't?
Him: I had to clear an obstruction.
His authoritative and official sounding response still makes me laugh out loud to this very day, and it opened the floodgates, so to speak and set the tone and unspoken rules about openness and bathroom humor we follow to this very day.
Romance isn't flowers and candle light. Real romance is being kissed with morning breath and finding someone sexy while they run the sweeper or mow the lawn.
It's knowing that you are free to be yourself and share opinions.
It's looking at that person in a new way every single day, seeing them change and grow, but knowing they are exactly the same as they always were.
It's knowing that that person will be there every single goddamn day for the rest of your life, in your face, behind your back, in and out, back to front, upside down and not only not minding, but looking forward to it.
Finding sweat pants, messy hair and stinky feet adorable is true love.
I say Fuck Valentine's Day, but if you do choose to celebrate this bullshit holiday - DON'T BE LAME. At this point you've got 2 whole weeks to plan something meaningful so don't wait until the last minute - book a reservation at the romantic restaurant now so you don't end up at the fucking Sizzler.
Seriously, it's better to not give anything at all than to end up resorting to one of those goddamn bucket roses or a teddy bear purchased from a gas station.