What is it about Valentine’s Day that polarises people in 2 distinct groups? There are some of us who hate the commercialisation that accompanies the day and think it’s a money-making scheme by business, while there are others who plan their celebrations for the day months in advance!
In the days leading up to February 14, advertisements & promotions proclaiming the perfect gift for your valentine begin. And what’s the perfect gift? Oh, there is a lot to choose from…heart shaped candy, a teddy bear clutching a red heart, a solitaire, a perfume, a dinner at a popular restaurant, or a holiday at an exotic destination…it’s your choice.
I bet your first thought is: “Look at the nerve; a blog about gifting is being disdainful about Valentine’s Day gifts!” And your second thought is: “So, does that mean I’m not going to get any help with valentine gift ideas?”
Before you jump to any conclusions, let me explain. This blog continues to stay true to the central theme of gifting. But this time I’m offering an unusual gift idea…the gift of perspective.
Simply put, I’m attempting to put Valentine’s Day in perspective.
Here’s my personal experience: When I was in college, my friends and I would mope about on Valentine’s Day lamenting that we didn’t have a special someone to share the day with. But the good thing was that we would make our own plans for the day — like watching romantic movies back-to-back (which inevitably led to even more moping…sigh) or buy gifts for each other. While I now have a special someone in my life to celebrate the day with, the irony is I no longer make any plans!
So what’s changed you might ask? The answer is 2 things. Firstly, I no longer feel pressurised to make a show of love just because several others are doing so and secondly, all the Valentine’s Day propaganda about exchanging gifts and sharing romantic moments doesn’t affect me any more!
Here’s a thought: If we do want to celebrate Valentine’s Day in its true spirit, let’s stop equating a valentine with a romantic partner. A valentine simply means a person you love and that could be anybody – your mother, your father, your friend, your child…anyone. Why not celebrate love in all its forms? And if February 14 doesn’t feel like a special day to you, fret not. Decide on a day that is special and important to you and make it your version of Valentine’s Day!