If you're in a relationship, there are certain expectations where Valentine's Day is concerned. But no one likes to articulate those expectations. And since people aren't mind-readers, people fall short. Lord knows, I've never actually had a good one... never had one full of romance and hearts and flowers. Never once. My ex was incredibly unromantic (well, he was pretty much unfeeling so romance was completely out of the question). Add to the fact that my birthday is the day after? Yeah. I've said many times I'll marry the first person who can differentiate between the two days. I'm not materialistic (I swear) and it's not about getting two presents (I swear) but I'd love my birthday to be acknowledged separately from the Pink and Red day. Maybe I'm being petty... I don't know. But it's how I feel.
And if you're not in a relationship, you're reminded at every turn how someone else would complete you... make you whole... make your eyes sparkle and rainbows fly out your butt. Yeah. I don't subscribe to that theory either. Well, not anymore.
Years ago someone gave me this poem. Though I was still married and it didn't really apply to my life at the time, it spoke to me. I hung onto it and when I saw it printed on a plaque in a gift shop a few years later, I bought it and hung it on the wall over my dresser. When my marriage ended, the poem became the words I lived by. Yesterday I found out that a dear bloggy friend just ended a relationship... it was so hard for her to do because even though she knows this person isn't right for her, she loves him. So on this Valentine's Day, I wanted to share these words with her... and with anyone whose Valentine is herself (or himself)...
Comes the Dawn
After a while you learn the subtle difference between holding a hand and chaining a soul.
And you learn that love doesn't mean leaning and company doesn't mean security.
And you learn kisses aren't contracts and presents aren't promises.
And you learn to accept your defeats with your head up and your eyes open.
And you learn to build all your roads on today because tomorrow's ground is too uncertain.
For plans and futures have a way of falling down in mid-flight.
After a while you learn that sunshine burns if you get too much.
So you plant your own garden and decorate your own soul
instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers.
And you learn that you really can endure...
That you really are strong...
And you really do have worth...
and you learn... and learn
With every good-bye,
On this Valentine's Day, remember...
Love, Me... XO