V is for Valentine

My husband and I exchanged gifts on tuesday. We have a set budget and simple desires. He wanted another Elric book, along with a DC reprint “Ghosts” and the Mars Trilogy by Burroughs. I asked for a book of prints by Ernst Haeckel and “DIY Couture” by Rosie Martin (book reviews for both later.) Last night we spent playing Dungeon Crawl Classics with some friends, drinking out of light up Lord of the Rings chalices that a friend brought. It was fun. Valentine’s Day is great for reminding us how wonderful the other person is. And believe me, being together a bunch of years, having a child that takes nearly all your time and energy, working full time, going to school full time (Mikael is doing both)- it wears on you, and your partner can get lost in the shuffle of “life”. Haha, cleaning the bathroom does not make you feel sexy.

So, for us, it’s nice to have little breaks every month and holidays are perfect for that. Tonight I’m making Italian stuffed shells and cheese. For March we have St.Paddy’s and Mikael’s birthday. April is mine, and so on.

What I’m getting at is, it trips me out to see people hate Valentine’s Day. As another consumer driven excuse to buy more crap, well, yes, it’s gross, but so is every other holiday in America. I think it’s because V Day is supposed to celebrate love and when you’re single it makes you feel your singlehood acutely. Which is bad for most people. I don’t want to get too “Man Who Fell to Earth” on you, but I’ve never felt that. I’ve felt wistful and hopeful when single. Vaguely excited about who I might meet throughout the day, but not lonely. With my books and drawings, I could never be lonely.

I’ve only ever felt truly lonely in relationships. I don’t think there’s anything worse than looking at the person who’s supposed to care about you or love you and realize they don’t know who you are and don’t care. So, no, I can’t imagine why people get so crazy around Valentine’s Day and loathe people in relationships and snidely insinuate those relationships are false or the people are fooling themselves or they’re just going to break up eventually so it’s all a bunch of sound and fury signifying nothing. To you I say, “sour grapes.” And having been in a couple of long term relationships before I was married, saying that they’re going to end is like saying ice will melt in the sun. No duh. Everything ends. I’m going to call my Great Aunt Vi today because her husband died a few years ago and I know she’ll be feeling lonely. Everything ends, but what I’ve learned from people is, enjoy it while it lasts. Fully engage and live your life. Don’t hide or go in half way because you’re afraid it won’t last-it won’t. Nature will have it all.

Last night I lay in bed and talked about this with my husband. I told him, “I think without you, I would feel so lonely for the first time in my life. I can’t even imagine it.” He is, no joke, my best friend. Even if we had never been romantic, we would still be friends with tons in common. Luckily, we like each other. In the quiet moments of our lives, I look at him and still see the young man I married, with his dark eyes and long lashes, like sea creatures, waving in the tide. And I fall in love with him, all over. Everything ends, but everything also begins.

A little over 3 years ago~ Mikael and my pregnant feet.

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