Some say that Valentine’s Day is a bit overrated. However, whether or not you have a significant other in your life, love should never be forgotten or go unnoticed. It is something that should be celebrated every day even if it’s not Valentine’s Day. As my boyfriend and I plan our second Valentine’s together, I can’t help but wonder how this holiday begin so many years ago. How did Valentine’s Day become such a huge celebration?
Well, it turns out that it all began with a man known as Valentine. He and two others by the same name are recognized by the Catholic Church as martyrs. In particular, one legend believes that this Valentine was actually a priest who served during the third century in Rome. During this time period in Roman history, Emperor Claudius II did not allow single men to marry as he believed they made better soldiers for war. Valentine realized the injustice of this act and ultimately performed marriages for young lovers in secret. Unfortunately, Valentine’s actions were discovered, and Claudius ordered for him to be put to death.
Some believe another Valentine may have been killed for helping Christians escape Roman prisons. Can you say heroic? A different legend tells of an imprisoned Valentine who actually sent his first “valentine” to a young woman that visited him in jail (insert: “Mama, I’m in love with a criminal”). Remember those words you sign to your valentine? The one that states, “From your Valentine…?” Well, it is alleged that Valentine’s letter to his lover had those same words that we use today. Despite each of their heroic deeds, it was not until the end of the fifth century that Feb. 14 would be declared St. Valentines Day. The day was often referred to as the beginning of a bird’s mating season which made it inclined to become a day for romance. Although scholars are unsure about which Valentine actually inspired the holiday, each of these men was quite remarkable in their own way.
As you prepare for a day of festivities with your SO or even by yourself with a rom-com movie and a tub of ice cream, you might even have these same thoughts about where this lovey-dovey holiday came to be.
I have advice for those who celebrate Valentine’s Day. To the boys: spoil your girlfriend today and every day. To the girls: don’t underestimate your boyfriend on this holiday. They might say it’s no big deal, but I have no doubt that they have something planned just for you. Lastly, hug your loved ones and significant others extra tight this Valentine’s Day… can’t wait to squeeze ya, babe!