Friday, February 14, 2014

Will you be my Pigeon?

I hate Valentine's Day.  I like to call it VD so I can say cute things like "I hate VD".  I know that is not a unique perspective or statement this time of year, and you're probably already tired of the negativity and the whining.  I won't lie, right now at this moment I'm not too thrilled with myself because I feel like just another single person who went through a breakup within the last 6 months writing yet another post about not liking Valentine's Day.

I remember in Elementary school when Valentine's Day was a classroom affair. I remember picking out my Valentines at the store and going home and folding them at the perforated lines and tearing them, separating them into piles and then painstakingly picking out who got what Valentine.  I always put extra thought into the ones that went to the boys I liked.  My parents (and by that I mean my mom), used to do a little something for us every year and we would find something small like a Whitman's Sampler and a charm bracelet, or some Valentine's themed toe socks before school.  And then when the school day was over, everyone went home toting their bag of Valentines.

I have good memories of Valentine's Day as a child.  I don't know exactly when the bitterness about it all started because I didn't have "bad" experiences until later.  I was 13 when I first started "dating", and that year my "boyfriend" dumped me on the 13th and then tried to reconcile with me on the 16th or 17th and I turned him down; Unfortunately, behavior like this would become his Modus operandi for the rest of his life.  There were other let downs and disappointments later, but he was the first.

As a side note, I did forgive him for that and we were very close friends for years after.  At one point, we even made a pact that if we were unattached and childless by 25, we'd marry each other and make babies.  I Facebook stalked him just so that I could tell you he now has a chin full of face pubes (have I ever told you that I believe bad facial hair ruins a nice face?), is married and has three children.  Just because of that pact, I'm going to count him as yet another dodged bullet even though we were only kids.

I tend to spend Valentine's Day doing things like baking heart shaped cookies and writing rude things on them, ordering Chinese takeout, watching slasher movies and gorging myself on clearance chocolate.  I'm not one of those people who only hates VD when they are single, it's actually worse if I have a significant other.  I am not a "mushy" person and there are very few people, if any, who know me intimately who would describe me that way.  Not to mention that anyone I've gone out of my comfort zone for by trying to be cute/sweet/mushy ended up stomping my heart into the ground in the end.  I just don't want to put myself out there anymore, and maybe that is why I dislike this day of love.

Enter Full Metal Mommy.  She shared a post today and I'm not going to lie, I read it at least six times and felt something different each time.  But there was one part that stuck out:
"I don’t hate Valentines day. I loathe forced romance.  I squirm at obligatory marital sex because it feels like a plot out of Mad Men and smells downright oppressive, but I love my husband.  I love our marriage because I don’t feel the weight of obligation and I love a chance to own and celebrate it. "
And I realized a few things, and some chords were struck in me.  I really DON'T hate Valentine's Day.  I actually kind of like it all (except the naked cupids...those still creep me out) especially pink sweets and heart shaped pizzas because I'm really an 8 year old in a 27 year old's body and I'm convinced things in fun shapes taste better.  I loathe forced romance because the most romantic memories I have are with men who failed miserably on Valentine's Day.  Maybe I feel so let down on the actual holiday itself because the men who gave me beautiful, kick Nicholas Sparks in the junk, romantic moments did so on any other day of the year and sucked on Valentine's Day.

Have I mentioned, I'm totally creeped out by "Penis Christmas"?  Maybe I'm a weirdo for thinking about these things, but the knowledge that one night a year a whole bunch of people decide to bump uglies creeps me out.

Also, DO NOT Google "Penis Christmas".  Trust me.  You wont believe the shit I had to see to get this meme.  Seriously.  It was an act of love. 

And when it comes to obligatory sex I find the whole exchange of cliche flowers/candy for obligatory sex to be like some kind of dysfunctional species specific mating ritual.  Male pigeons circle a female and when they think they have her attention they kind of spin in front of them (Google "pigeon mating ritual"); Somehow, I feel that is more honest than presenting a bouquet of flowers and expecting a blowjob.  Not to mention, I like to live in this little dream world where I believe that someday I'll meet someone wonderful, who I might downright hate sometimes but that I'll never get enough of.  The obligatory sex thing just makes me feel gross inside and part of me wonders if Valentine's Day has never really meant anything to me because it went from being about cute, card-stock valentines and Whitman Samplers to being about sex and has never really been about celebrating love for me, which is quite an incredibly sad realization.
All I've ever really wanted was to be reminded that love is present and I've never had that.  Not as an adult from someone who isn't "supposed" to love me, anyways.  I've never really gotten anything for Valentine's Day that I didn't have to ask for or hint at so strongly that I might as well have asked for it.  I detest the idea that someone is doing something for me because it is "the thing to do" and somehow having to tell someone what to do only cheapens it.  I can't remember when the last time someone gave me a Valentine they put thought into and only because they wanted me to "be their Valentine".

And this is where I find myself upset with the commercialism of Valentine's Day...though it isn't the main POINT.  Maybe no one I've ever been involved with on Valentine's Day really cared enough about me to do something special, in hindsight...I could certainly see that as being a reason.  But there is also a part of me that believes that they felt like that couldn't compete with the scenes depicted in a Kay Jeweler commercial, or some stupid romantic movie they saw once so they didn't even try.  They didn't even try...and the fact that they chose not to try bothers me more than the fact that they didn't because they felt that something cookie cutter is what I wanted anyway. 

And the truth is that I never wanted or needed a Hallmark holiday.  I want someone who wants to celebrate with me, and treat me like their Sweetheart.   I want someone to write me or make me something heartfelt.  I want to feel like I'm celebrating love with someone, not performing some kind of strange mating ritual EVERYONE is compulsively performing.  After everything I've said and the years of believing that I hate Valentine's Day, maybe the truth is that I really just don't know what it is like to experience being in love on Valentine's Day with someone who just wants to celebrate being in love with me.

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