In the days before Valentines Day it may be proper to not only reflect on the first recorded matching of Valentines Day with the expression of Love, but also to look at what this day has become today.
Not only did Chaucer discuss this period of time, but so too did Shakespeare and many of the great renaissance writers. Poems were written, racy anonymous verses were exchanged, courtly love exchanged. Phrases of love prospered. This changed to the production of cards in the late 1700 and then mass produced cards in the paper factories of the 19th Century. Up until the latter half of the 20th century, Valentines Day was surely a time to exchange cards and thoughts with loved ones. However this evolved to adding of gifts. Quickly Valentines Day began to be about roses, chocolate and then jewelry. Yet in all the commercialization – as our children take paper valentines to school to exchange with class mates – something seems to have been forgotten or misplaced.
Today the estimates on exchanging Valentines reached just over 1.5 Billion. This does not include the e-cards and other Internet based exchanges. But why do we need to wait for Valentines Day to share our feelings? Is it because for men expression of love is sometimes difficult? Or is it for women who do net hear enough from their partner a true expression of feelings because open interaction is often bouncing off walls designed in each other’s psyche? Or is it because media and commercialization has taught our society that the only ‘safe’ time to exchange feelings is during this one day? If we are in a relationship that is loving and supportive, then why do we need to succumb to a commercialization of that passion? Isn’t every day really the day we should express our feelings?
Does this mean I’m suggesting we go and buy chocolate and roses all the time? Of course not. But we could – actively – acknowledge that the person we are with means something to us. Something special that we share. We don’t need a single day to do this; we should be doing it all the time. But it rarely happens. By the same notion we should be extending this to our children – reminding them that no matter what we love those ans providing them with beneficial proof.
As interactions grow ‘comfortable’ and as children enter the picture we make grand logic about our partners and forget why we loved them. Furthermore we forget to tell and show them. We forget to set aside time for ourselves. We forget to do the little things – like leaving notes of appreciation where your partner can find them – and become so caught up in going through the motions of life that we forget to *live* life and grow our experiences.