Be my Valentine...?
The day that represents the expression of true love to one's soul mate... as I understand it.
How, then, did it become 'materialism' with a rather exquisite bow and some silk ribbons attached?
How, then, did it become - a number with currency sign, thus, representing one's 'budget' of love for that year?
Does anyone still agree with the phrase, "Money can't buy love"? Well, according to our consumerist society - the answer is no, apparently we don't.
I actually cringe when someone asks me what my 'plans' are for Valentine's or what 'I'm getting'!
Nowhere in my equation of love is there a £ or a $ sign. Yes, treating your loved one may involve money but it is not integral and it does not have to be above a certain amount.
I, personally, don't accept the bog-standard flowers or chocolates. Nor, for that matter, do I accept outrageously lavish/expensive gifts. In actual fact, they bore me. And, they prove nothing of love. They prove that I have a man that could be bothered to put any REAL effort into this day that apparently represents our entire relationship. If he were to get my one single of my favourite flower or my absolute favourite chocolates - then I would happily accept. But, just because they were expensive or look reasonable - that doesn't make them romantic.
True love, which is the so-called point of Valentine's Day, absolutely transcends any object, amount of money or any stereotypical 'romantic gestures'.
At this point, you may be mentally screaming: 'what on earth do you want then, woman?!'
The answer is this:
I want a man that will attempt to cook me a meal from another culture just because he knows how much I love culture, diversity and trying new thing. Even if he burns it, and we end up eating beans on toast - the point is that he really tried and put true thought into it. And, he knows that I would prefer a night in with that - than going to some fancy restaurant with too much cutlery than I know what to do with, any day!
Or, someone that will whisk me off to a random beach with a homemade picnic, just because he knows that is my favourite outing and I feel so at peace there, regardless of the weather.
Or, should he have decided to take me away completely for a holiday - he would know me so well to know not to book a package holiday. Instead, he will have spotted some cheap flights to a place I haven't yet been to and we will enjoy the character that the local hostels have to offer, as we explore and work things out as we go...
You see - it has to be specific, personal and it has to be memorable!
How else are memories to be cherished? At least, the best moments in my life are the quirky, randomly funny or even the scary moments when you just don't know how things will turn out. The one and only thing I did know during these times was: LOVE. Love for those around me, be it family, friends or a partner...
I don't remember Christmas 2009 because I had X amount spent on me in gifts/vouchers.
I remember it because it was the first Christmas that my Muslim father had ever celebrated with us. And, to make it better, he brought his new wife and their beautiful baby boy and my cousin from Tunisia. My mum was there too, helping my sister with the chicken.
Granted, we had our fall outs and the usual drama we have and my sister and I pretended that we had never eaten pork but the point was that we were together! All the family, for the first time in all the 19 years of my life.
Now, that was special and I love every minute of it!
Purely because it was a chance to share our love and appreciation for one another that we had never had before. That's memorable.
And, the same goes for Valentine's Day and every other day we are blessed with to share with our loved ones on this earth.
I think: it is not just a shame to put a price tag of love - but an actual atrocity.
Love is the one thing in this life that doesn't give a penny to give nor receive.
It comes from the Bank of the Heart of Humanity - not the cheque book of consumerism...
Thank you for reading. Feel free to comment and leave feed back.
*In case you are wondering, I wrote this a few days before Valentine's Day 2011, but I didn't get around to uploading it and I wrote the line about the price tag on love before Jessie J's song 'Price Tag'.