Get stories and expert advice on all things related to college and parenting.
When We Look at Our Big Kids, We Still See Our Babies, TooElizabeth Spencer
My e-mail is starting to fill with Valentine’s Day offers and the store windows have heart displays and Cupids, which can only mean one thing, Valentine’s Day can’t be too far off. Before you say that you hate Valentine’s Day and it’s a made up Hallmark holiday blah blah blah, I have a few things I'd like to say to you.
As I sit here and write this it’s something like negative 100 degrees outside. Okay not really, but with the polar vortex in place it certainly feels like it. The days are bleak and dark. Even though the temperatures are supposed to moderate, spring is still a ways off. We are at that point where we are starting to wonder if we will make it through winter. I know I am.
I’ll give you a pass if you dislike Christmas or Chanukah because you can rationally make that decision having just enjoyed Thanksgiving. In addition, in December the weather hasn’t been bad long enough to drive you bonkers. But on my umpteenth day of listening to my high school senior’s report on the snow calculator’s probability of having a delayed school opening/snow day and dealing with hat head and chapped lips, hands and fingers, I need a little joy. And if that has to come by way of a greeting card holiday, then so be it.
The news is full of sad stories and our country is more divided than ever. Remember the song, “What the World Needs Now Is Love”? People, here is a chance to make that happen!
When my three sons were little, I would buy them small gifts and candy and use Valentine’s Day as an extra excuse to shower their adorable faces with kisses. They would come home from school and show me the Valentines they had received from their classmates and they would be on a sugar high from all the treats they ate. All good because they were happy. Sometimes the five of us went out to dinner; sometimes my husband and I went out alone. He works a lot and I loved that he always managed to make it home for dinner on Valentine’s Day. Score another one for this holiday.
The news is full of sad stories and our country is more divided than ever. Remember the song, “What the World Needs Now Is Love”? People, here is a chance to make that happen! This holiday is all about love!! Tell your family and friends how much you love them. Never mind that this is a fabricated holiday. Does that really matter? Mother’s Day is made up and there’s no way in hell I’m turning down the crêpes my husband gets me for breakfast or not using it as an excuse to avoid doing laundry and other housework. And speaking of made up, how about the Tooth Fairy, Easter Bunny and Santa Claus? Spoiler alert: made up, made up, made up.
I know that haters are gonna hate but please, not on Valentine’s Day. I don’t want to hear that you are going out to eat on February 15 to avoid crowds and pre-fixe menus or plan on buying roses on sale after the holiday (if at all). Be practical another time, like in the summer when it’s warm and sunny and taking a principled stand is easier. Don’t be the Valentine’s Day Grinch. Throw caution to the wind and celebrate with everyone else. Buy that card. Do something special for those you love including yourself! Many of us aren’t in a romantic relationship but we have siblings, friends, neighbors or co-workers we can surprise with an affectionate gesture. I even used to get our dog a special Valentine’s treat and he truly seemed to appreciate it.
It’s time to celebrate with the perfect gift for your new grad!