Celebrating Valentine’s Day When You’re Single

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I’ve always been single for Valentine’s Day. I’ve never celebrated it with someone I was interested in romantically. Yet I’ve always loved the holiday.

I remember waking up as a kid every Valentine’s Day to find a card and small chocolate box from my parents waiting for me at the breakfast table. They would write a short note to each of their children, reminding us that they love and appreciate each of us for who we are. It was a sweet gesture that I always looked forward to each February, for more reasons than one. It’s only as an adult that I’ve really learned to appreciate what a gift they gave me.

Valentine’s Day is difficult for a lot of people who are not in a serious relationship. For every couple celebrating their love, there is a single person feeling lonely and excluded because they don’t feel like they have someone with whom to share the day. Valentine’s Day is celebrated as a day of romance, but my parents showed me that it is about love. It’s one of the best things they did for me. Even if I’m not being romanced, I can always celebrate the special someones in my life.

So what am I doing to celebrate this year? Over the weekend, I invited one of my good friends to share in what has become one of my annual traditions: making Valentine’s Day cards at the National Postage Museum. There is something special about being surrounded by all these families making cards for the people they love—just like my parents did for me.  I always look forward to the crafting chaos, including competing with the adorable yet assertive five-year-olds who have claimed exclusive ownership of the glitter pens. 

My friend and I are both single, so we both made glitter encrusted and stick-on rhinestone bejeweled cards for our family members. I’ve already mailed them, but that’s not the end of the Valentine’s Day festivities for me. On February 14, I’m meeting up with several of my friends and will be giving them handmade heart-shaped cards to thank them for being in my life. I’ll call my parents and my grandparents to tell them I love them.

I don’t have a date for Valentine’s Day, but I don’t feel like I’m missing out. I’m content celebrating the loves I have in my life right now—with lots and lots of glitter. I love Valentine’s Day because it is about love—in all of its forms.

Mariana

lives in Washington, DC. She is the second oldest of four but is perpetually the middle child. Growing up in Mississippi and later Michigan, her parents raised her to be a steel magnolia that will still bloom despite the cold midwestern winters. She believes in love because love is all you need.
Mariana
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