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Ever since I was a kid, I have loved Valentine’s Day. 

Each year I looked forward to searching the supermarket for the perfect little note cards to give out to my classmates along with heart shaped lollipops. I would sign each one with my name and embellish it with a sticker. 

It was my Valentine’s ritual.

My mom would make my brother and I heart shaped pancakes for breakfast which would be served alongside sweet little Valentine’s Day cards she would write to us. 

As I got older, these traditions continued and extended beyond my family and into my friendships.In middle school my close friends and I would give each other little gifts to express our gratitude and love for one another. We would send out candy grams at school and dress in pink and red. Valentine’s Day has always been a day to celebrate all of the love in the world and eat tons of chocolate and other pink and red packaged treats from the grocery store. It wasn’t until high school rolled around that I began to associate this day with romance.

In my teen years, my perspective on this day quickly shifted. For the first time ever, I was surrounded by couples on Valentine’s Day rather than people who were looking to celebrate for the fun of it. While “galentines” was a thing, it definitely did not discount the fact that my fellow single people were bummed out when this day rolled around. My friends would scroll through Instagram wishing that they were in a relationship after seeing the absurd amount of people who had a significant other to spend the day with. It seemed that either you were upset on February 14 or you were choosing to ignore that the day even existed at all. In high school it very much felt like it was a day only for those who were in a relationship or had a specific person to spend it with. In turn, the rest of us experienced the day as an opportunity to moan about being single, watch movies and wallow… cut to me watching He’s Just Not That Into You, in bed, over a box of nut free chocolates as I text my best friend about how much I love Justin Long. 

I got caught up in this relationship facade of Valentine’s Day and began to feel weird for wanting to celebrate it when I was single. I decided to play into the “I hate Valentine’s day” trope as it seemed the cooler option of the two (???). What once was a pink and red cheery daze turned into this gloomy, grey day of negative energy and I couldn’t wait for it to be over. I would grimace at the treats and decorations in my local grocery store, when I used to look forward to shopping for red heart shaped lollipops for my classmates. 

I am no longer a teenager and can confidently say that I do not hate Valentine’s Day. And I wholeheartedly blame that phase on my teen angst.

As my first Valentine’s Day at university is just around the corner, I cannot wait to celebrate it with the new friends I have made and the other important people in my life. Valentine’s Day is a time to show gratitude to your loved ones and to yourself. An opportunity to think of ways to spread love and give love in your life. To indulge in heart shaped cookies and make everything pink and red. It’s honestly just an excuse to celebrate each other and how lucky you are to have met the people you hold near and dear to you. And yes, for those of you in a relationship, go nuts with your cute pictures and sappy captions, I am here for it. 

So here’s to making Valentine’s Day your own – a day to give love to yourself and others, because god knows we all need some. 

Jasmine Rana

Dalhousie '24

Jasmine is a Campus Correspondent and the President of Her Campus at Dalhousie University. Majoring in marketing, she is extremely interested in content creation and story telling, as interpersonal connection and relatability is extremely important in today’s world. When she isn’t working on creating content she can be found out at brunch, planning her dream home via Pinterest, or listening to her new favourite song on repeat for the next week.
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