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Valentine’s Day Blahs

I don’t mean to be a Valentine’s Day hater…but really…I kind of hate it. For as long as I can remember, I’ve had an aversion to what has so blatantly become a ‘Hallmark’ holiday. The older I get, the more I feel like Charlie Brown searching for the meaning of Christmas…only there isn’t so obvious an answer in the end. I guess I ultimately don’t see the point in showering your true love with gifts a plenty on this one day that’s magically deemed special. It seems so…forced. And really, it’s like you’re damned if you do, and damned if you don’t.
If you’re in a relationship and your significant other doesn’t do something for you on Valentine’s Day…you are disappointed. If you act disappointed, then your lover feels bad and then feels obligated to remedy the situation with a last minute run to Hy-Vee for flowers…or some such thing. And then you feel bad when they return with what was surely the last tiny handful of baby’s breath…and they feel bad…and you feel bad.
If you aren’t in a relationship…you feel like a loser. And want to boycott the whole day. Even I, who roll my eyes when I walk into work on February 14th and see the tables set up, ready and waiting to be filled with deliveries galore, can’t help but feel a little grumbly when my phone fails to ring to tell me about my non-existent delivery.
If you’re just starting a relationship, you feel obligated to do something remarkable…and then spend the next several years trying to figure out either how to duplicate it, top it, or hope that you won’t HAVE to be so grand going forward…all of which generally leave the recipient disappointed in one way or another.
This year I was feeling especially grumbly as I walked in to work…which is dumb, because I generally try not to let the Valentine’s whoo-ha get under my skin. Each year, I make Matt his big cookie,
take a few pictures, we exchange cards and smooches…and that’s about it. Simple, easy, predictable…no one gets disappointed. But today, little did I know, Matt had other plans…plans that, in true Valentine’s day fashion, got completely screwed up.
On my way home from work, I called Matt to tell him I’d be stopping at the grocery store. He asked me how my day was…’fine’. ‘Just fine?’ ‘Yep.’ ‘You didn’t get anything?’ ‘No…should I have?’ ‘YES!’ Apparently, he had arranged to have flowers sent to me at work…today…Valentine’s number 19 together…the first and ONLY time he’s ever made plans to send flowers to me at work…and they came after I had left. Figures. This just added to my Valentine’s slump. I had missed it. Missed my big moment to stop at the security desk for MY delivery. Missed carrying it up the elevators with that silly, smug smile of ‘yup, I just got FLOWERS’…missed it all. Which is DUMB, I realize…because I hate that whole thing. But still, the high school girl who still lives somewhere deep down inside, was disappointed. I realize the flowers will be waiting for me when I get back to work tomorrow…but it won’t be the same. I won’t have gotten VALENTINE’S flowers. Whoop-d-do, right!?!? But this is what I’m saying…Valentine’s Day makes me nuts, apparently.
So when I finally got home to my dear Matt…we hugged…a LOT and laughed a lot over our stupid, mixed up Valentine’s Day…he had also completely forgotten to get out my card…which he DID have…but forgot he had. And we made a deal…next year, we ‘re just going to treat February 14th like a Karwoski birthday. Maybe we’ll call it Matt & Emily day…and we’ll take the day off work (to avoid the I-did/didn’t-get-flowers-at-work debacle) and just enjoy the day together. Because I guess at the end of the day that is what it should be…to me. And it’s not that a day to say I love you is bad…but man, we sure do screw it up.

The picture that Gina took for me after she went down and picked up my delivery:

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