Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Why I'm glad I'm single on Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day to you all. If you're in a happy relationship, I tip my hat to you. And if you're not, this is a shout out to all my single ladies on Valentine's Day. Regardless of your "relationship status" and whether you regard February the 14th as just another day or celebrate this day of love with your partner or friends or treat yourself to a new handbag - I wanted to write a light-hearted post about the 14 February.

I am a proud singleton. Single by choice not design. And to be honest even though I am glad to be single 99 days out of 100, today of all days makes me breath a sigh of relief that I am. Why? It's the pressure. Valentine's day, in my mind, has more pressure on it in terms of the displays of your worth than your birthday and Christmas Day. It's the day when, if you're in a relationship, the size of the bouquet, box of chocs or jewellery box you receive is meant to be a measure of how much your partner loves you. And wants everyone else to know how much they love you.

Years ago, when I was still married, I worked in a large office that was situated right behind the reception area. This was prime location for us girls to sit and watch the constant stream of flower deliveries arriving throughout the day. And would we judge. There would be huge, beautiful displays arriving and we would try and guess who the receiver would be and then fall a bit quiet when said woman proudly walked back through the whole of the building with an arrangement as tall as herself. And then the wind ups would start and we would discreetly call each other up, pretending to be Reception. Cruel I know, but quite funny. Anyway after a few of these calls, perfectly timed after the arrival of more huge bouquets, I started to feel a little anxious that I, one of the longest married people on the team, wouldn't get such a delivery. But then I was distracted and actually shouted out to my team mates "good god what poor cow is going to get those". And we all looked outside as a delivery person was walking in with what can only be described as a pitiful petrol station bunch of lilies. And guess who then got the call from reception that they had a delivery? Yep, not so smug me! I learnt a lesson that day. Which was to close the window blind next Valentine's Day.

And that's the thing about today, you can be in the most committed, happy, respectful relationship and your partner can come home with flowers on a normal day "just because" or make your sandwiches for lunch to save you doing it or just always put the bins out but on Valentine's Day there is a huge pressure that unless we aren't whisked away for 24 hours in Paris or a night at a spa or presented with a Tiffany box, then we aren't loved enough. You know it's all rubbish but yet this unrealistic expectation skews logic. Even going out for a date night on Valentine's Day seems a bit twee and expected (and more expensive). It's almost like saying we don't go out at any other time, but we're out tonight. It's crazy - you celebrate how you want to and when you want to. Today is not the only day to show your love and appreciation for someone.

I won't have any of this pressure. And I will enjoy being able to buy heart themed products, because who doesn't love anything heart shaped. But I'll be buying them, reduced, tomorrow because I don't want to look like a desperate who's just remembered what day it is!

Whatever you're doing today-have a great Tuesday.



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