My husband and I have been married for 15 years, and every Valentine’s Day thus far has been kind of a let down. I always have these high expectations of some crazy romantic night that reads like a movie. But that’s not reality. It’s mostly not reality because Jay isn’t romantic. Like…not at all. But that’s OK because he has so many other great qualities. And it’s not reality because we’re actually not in a movie…or so I’ve been told. (I still have a hard time with that one!) But even though I know this about Jay, it took me a while to let go of those crazy expectations. Isn’t that funny? I mean you know who that other person is, but you expect them to magically change to become someone different…while staying mostly the same. Hmmm. Sounds kinda kooky to me. But believe me, I’ve been the line leader for high, unrealistic expectations for many years.
Sadly, most of our “marriage-i- disappointing” stories have come from Valentine’s Day misunderstandings and tragedies. Over the years, some of them have turned into hilarious stories about our stupidity. And so the last few years we’ve tried to keep it simple, which means Valentine’s Day hasn’t been very exciting for me. I think I was finally getting over the whole thing…letting go of my dreams of what it should be…and realizing it’s just another day to have a nice dinner. Well the problem with that is that we already eat out a lot. I mean…way more than we should. So it’s not really anything new, exciting, different, romantic. Boring!!!
Then last year when my munchkins were 2- and 4-years-old, they started having parties at their preschool, getting and giving cards and candy, and enjoying the holiday too. And it hit me! It FINALLY hit me! V day isn’t just about romance and only being with your significant other! It’s about LOVE and should be celebrated with all the people we love…or at least more than one of them. People who don’t have a lover during this season hate on the holiday, but that’s silly. I mean we all have people in our lives that we love, right?! And it’s the holiday of love! I’m more excited about loving on my kiddos this year than I am hanging with my hubby…because we hang all the time! (No offense, Jay. I mean if you’re going to take me on a romantic getaway for the weekend, that’d be one thing…but there go my crazy expectations again! :)) I love my kids so much I want to eat them up! And I just might for Valentine’s Day.
So this got me thinking…specifically thinking about throwing a big love fest (nothing weird, people! I’m not talking Woodstock here!) for our friends and their kids. (Maybe their kids…we’ll see. :)) And maybe it won’t happen this year…but maybe next year. (It takes me a REALLY long time to implement and mull over a new idea.) Besides, going out on the actual day of Valentine’s Day is a nightmare, as most of us know!!! We actually tried it last year, and it was SO stressful and stupid. We said never again! We literally stood wall to wall with strangers for over an hour even though we had reservations. And then the servers were so on edge because the restaurant was so overbooked…it was miserable!
When I mentioned my new idea to Jay, he was all over it! This year we’re expanding to include the kids in our festivities. I have holiday-themed menus planned for the whole day. But next year…next year Lovefest 2016 will have its inaugural kickoff! We’ll play silly romantic/marriage games and eat and drink lots of pink stuff. It’ll be a blast! Love the one you’re with, sure! But love those other ones too!