Ah, Valentine’s Day. A day where everyone who isn’t single gets to flaunt their love, affection, and excessive amounts of PDA everywhere. A day where, if you’re single, you get to stay at home alone and cry… but what if it didn’t have to be that way? The reputation of Valentine’s Day has been tainted for far too long. So, I propose we turn the holiday of love into the holiday of all kinds of love.
Sometimes referred to as “singles awareness day”, Valentine’s Day seems to have always been tainted by a less than stellar reputation. It doesn’t have to be that way. In fact, the original holiday wasn’t even close to what it is today. The history of Valentine’s day is long and complicated. Some believe that the origin comes from the ancient Roman festival of Lupercalia. The festival itself was actually super dark. Sacrifice, a bloody feast, and a lottery to pair women with men were all main features. All this was done in the hopes of scaring away evil spirits. The Christian version of the holiday isn’t much better. It was a day to celebrate the martyrdom of Saint Valentine, who was killed for refusing to give up on his faith. The traditions of these two holidays have since faded, turning into the Valentine’s Day we know today.
With the old holiday being so different, why can’t we change the way we celebrate again? Instead of a day centered around the love of romance, we could recognize all kinds of love. Playing games and spending time with your family, no matter how annoying they may be, is still a good way to celebrate. Giving your friends cookies made from scratch is an amazing way to show your love and appreciation. Even having a day to yourself, watching movies and taking the longest bath ever, is a show of care. The definition of “love” isn’t limited to a romantic partner. So, spend this Valentine’s Day how you want to. Show your affection to whoever deserves it, even yourself.