In Defense of Valentine’s Day

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I know what you’re thinking, Valentine’s Day is the worst.

It’s a manufactured, Hallmark holiday that doesn’t actually mean anything. If you really love someone, you should celebrate it every day. Chocolate and diamond companies are the only ones who really care. I’ve heard it all, and I don’t care. 

My kids are 10, 8, and 5 and they are HERE for holidays. As I’m putting them to bed on holiday nights, they’re already asking which holiday is next and how long until it’s here. That is childhood magic and if I have to go hard for a holiday that isn’t a favorite, I’m all in. 

But really, what’s not to like? Every kid looks cute in pink and red and little girls in heart dresses and little boys in shirts about loving their moms…how can that be wrong?

Plus, Valentine’s parties at school are the best. If you think back to your childhood core memories, I bet those parties are there. I bet you had some pretty awesome Lisa Frank holographic Valentines that you filled out with your gel pen and couldn’t wait to pass out.

My oldest is in 5th grade this year and watching him grinning while he read the sweet messages from his friends at his last elementary school Valentine’s party was pretty emotional.

I snapped a picture of a group of his friends and they did hand gestures that I don’t understand and yelled trendy phrases that made no sense, and I know all too soon they’ll be full-blown teenagers and a sack full of class Valentines won’t be on their radars. But today it is. 

And I agree wholeheartedly with those of you who say that we should show our love every day. Things are hard right now. There’s never a wrong time to tell your kid what you love about them or have a date night with your partner or drop some cookies off on a friend’s porch, but when there’s a whole day geared towards love, it hits a little differently. The mood is right, the reminders are everywhere and the stores are stuffed with treats (unless you’re looking for Valentines for class parties…those are somewhere with the Lunchables and we don’t know where that is).

Maybe it’s just me being sentimental and trying to preserve the childhood magic, but the sweet voice of a 5-year-old asking me to be his Valentine and watching him painstakingly cut out a paper heart that looks way more like a lumpy oval just does it for me. Watching him sift through all of his animal erasers that he is giving to his class for the frog that he knows his teacher will love hits me in the feels. I am so glad my kids are lucky enough to be surrounded by so much love, and we’re lucky enough to have a day that celebrates that. 

So give me the pink and red heart explosion that starts right after Christmas. Give me marked-up chocolate and buying yet another shirt that they’ll maybe wear once. Give me the last-minute run to Target because we made too many mistakes on our class Valentines.

Because a day where we can celebrate all of the traditional and nontraditional love stories that my kids are lucky enough to witness, and a day that lets me watch more childhood memories being made, and a day where I can celebrate the people that mean the absolute most to me is a great day. 

Happy Valentine’s Day!

 

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