I've Only Ever Gotten Valentines From My Dad

    So, the title is pretty self-explanatory but I’m definitely not complaining. Every time February rolls around people, mostly girls (okay – always girls), post pictures of “hints” of things they will accept from their significant other or even potential suitors and friends. And then you have the annual Facebook reposts about how we all wish we were back in elementary school when everyone got something from everyone else regardless. I personally thought I was the coolest girl in third grade because I gave out NBA Valentine’s cards to all the guys in my class, and Lizzie McGuire cards to all the girls. Not even joking.            

Fast-forward a few years and every card, chocolate arrangement, or teddy bear all came from one sole gift giver: My dad.

Even when I happened to be dating someone and the time frame overlapped with Valentine’s Day, somehow I ended up with seemingly nothing (throwback to awkward conversations at the lunch table the next day). The truth is, I always got something. I would come home to a pink and red envelope on the table with my name on it usually accompanied with some kind of heart-shaped candy or stuffed animal. On this day to acknowledge the one(s) we love most, someone always loved me most! I was loved whether I was thirteen with braces, sixteen and bratty, or nineteen and had forgotten to call home enough.

In retrospect, in twenty years this one person made it known that I deserved something year after year. My point is that regardless of the many changes in life and shifting levels of expectations we should feel like “At the end of the day, when I go home, I know there will be something nice for me” whether it’s from our dad, our mom, our roommate, or even our "that one aunt that sends us a card for every single miniscule holiday". Maybe this isn’t on February 14th but instead every Wednesday because it’s your favorite day of the week, or every time you finish a big exam, or randomly when you least expect it to be reminded someone cares. Appreciate these gestures.

To be honest, the older I get the less I feed into holidays and this one in particular has always been the last one on my list. There’s still the sentiment that “it’s the thought that counts”. While I don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day, I wouldn’t turn down some chocolate and thoughtfulness – just in case anyone was wondering. 




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