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Galentine’s vs. Valentine’s

In elementary school, on the Friday before Valentine’s Day (or on the actual day), my teacher would stop lecturing and we’d take time to deposit candy and other items into every student’s recently hand-crafted paper bag decorated with hand-painted hearts and those ultra rounded bubble-letters everyone would try to make. Middle school, people didn’t care too much. High school, an announcement was made every morning that all gifts (teddy bears, balloons, chocolates, etc.) had to be sent to the main office, tagged with the name and last class of the day, and stored there until five minutes before the dismissal bell rang. In college, I’m pretty sure it’s going to be something different because some people are actually mature adults who can enjoy their Valentine’s Day without making it seem like the world is going to end because they are so in love/not so in love.

Now, Valentine’s Day being considered a completely materialistic attempt to profess and show love for someone is a whole ‘nother story, so if that’s what you’re looking for, sorry. And, if you think the entire concept of this “Galentine’s” thing is awesome, then you might not be in the right place, either.

Because it kinda seems ridiculous.

For those of you who might be unaware of what Galentine’s Day is, it’s basically a spoof of the real Valentine’s Day, where single girls get together the night before and “celebrate friendships,” coined from Parks & Rec. Basically, it’s just like anti-prom…


Sorry, that was a little aggressive.

I’m not saying that you shouldn’t decide NOT to hangout with your girlfriends on/around Valentine’s Day. In fact, I think you should. No one should stay home on a day that is supposed to embody this awesome ability humans have to be able to foster relationships and communicate this intangible thing called “love,” where it makes us do and say things we never thought we would. Celebrating the holiday with your girlfriends that have made a difference in your life for the better is something you SHOULD be doing.

Which is exactly why you’re celebrating the holiday in it’s entirety. I mean, why is it so hard to say that you’re celebrating Valentine’s Day or do anything on that day? No one said that you couldn’t get your best friend who loves red roses a bouquet of them. Or that one girl you know that always has a snack of M&M’s in her bag (*cough* me *cough*).

As a single girl, I understand what it’s like to go for years without being taken out to dinner and given flowers and holding hands while walking down the street with someone who lights up your world. But I also understand that Valentine’s Day is just a day. In fact, it’s a day that legend says is about a guy who married a bunch of people and he wasn’t supposed to and ended up dead because of it.

Totally romantic in a twisted way, right?

I guess that’s why it’s such an important holiday for us. Valentine’s Day is a way to have your feelings validated; you’re with someone who accepts you for who you are and you aren’t alone.

But you’re never alone. No matter what type of relationship you have with someone – ANYONE – you’re loved somewhere by someone, whether you realize it or not.

So, on SUNDAY, go out with your friends. Go see “Deadpool,” because it seems like it’s going to be one of the best movies ever and you should be as excited as I am for it. Go get dinner or lunch or just food in general, because it’s a life necessity and why not do it with people you enjoy being around? Go to City Center and take pictures at the “LOVE” letters, because it’s what everyone’s going to do. Call your parents and tell them you love them.

Hell, run down the street telling random strangers you love them while wearing a pink tutu or something. Because that’s what Valentine’s Day is all about.

Showing love for everyone.

You can categorize Royall as either Leslie Knope when she has her color-coded binders: or Hyde whenever Jackie comes into a room before they start dating: There is no in-between.  Royall recently graduated with her B.A. in Sociology & Anthropology from CNU and now studies Government & International Relations at Regent University. She also serves as the Victim Advocate and Community Outreach Coordinator for Isle of Wight Co., VA in Victim Witness Services. Within Her Campus, she served as a Chapter Writer for CNU for one year, a Campus Expansion Assistant for a semester, Campus Correspondent for two years, and is in the middle of her second semester as a Chapter Advisor.  You can find her in the corner of a subway-tiled coffee shop somewhere, investigating identity experiences of members of Black Greek Letter Organizations at Primarily White Institutions as well as public perceptions of migrants and refugees. Or fantasizing about ziplining arcoss the French Alps. 
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