I have to admit that the reluctant romantic in me loves that phrase. I am not a fan of Valentine’s Day because I do not think I should be told when to be affectionate or loving or caring. But if I had to agree with anything about that day, it would be the aforementioned phrase. Too often I think we get lost in the commercialism of the day and forget what relationships should be about: acknowledging whomever one is with and making them feel special every day that is spent together. This morning my friend and I sat in the IHOP across from the Wal-Mart on Patrick Henry Blvd-I just felt like telling you that, anyway, so we were having breakfast, and the conversation drifted to relationships and why they fail. I wondered out loud how it was possible to go from talking to a person for over 6 hours a day on the phone, getting giddy at seeing them for even just 5 minutes to being barely able to stand the very air they exhale. She suggested that it was probably because some people tended to change as time went by. And while I wondered what causes said change, that is a story for another day. We began coming up with examples of how people in relationships go from attentive to complacent: speaking on the phone for over 6 hours at night and not wanting to get off, in some cases, even after the person on the other line has fallen asleep just to feel a connection. Fast forward 5-6 months if even that long, you can barely talk for 5 minutes on the phone and it is usually closed ended questions and statements- ” I am on my way” “Where did you put my keys?” Making romantic dinners and feeling nervous about what they’ll say about your cooking to having a treasure trove of takeout menus in a kitchen drawer and asking one too many times “What you want from McDonald’s?” Getting dressed in anticipation of receiving the person you are interested in at your home, waiting with bated breath for their arrival and once they are there, running outside to meet them at their car. Fast forward 5-6 months or even less-phone rings “Hello” “I am on my way” “The door is unlocked when you get here.”—-dial tone! Trying hard to remember their likes and dislikes, picking up their favourite foods while grocery shopping so they have something to eat when they come to your house to looking at their favourite cereal on the shelf and telling yourself “They’ll get it themselves if that’s what they want.”. It seems that relationships are conducted backwards more and more nowadays. We go from caring so much about the person we are with to becoming selfish and lacking respect for the relationship whereas we should have gone from caring and catering about self while we were single to caring about and becoming selfless towards the person we made a decision to commit to. The irony of this whole situation is that I feel like I have very clear and concise ideas about how a relationship should be conducted and I consider them very sound ideas but my experience in that department is quite lacking.
Now, as much as I have spent the last close to 600 words borderline claiming my disdain for Valentine’s day, I will still be getting my Valentine some coconut covered chocolates. No sense in making them feel left out while everyone around them opens cards, signs for flowers, dresses up for dinner at Sundial…hmm, maybe I’ll add a little stuffed beanie for good measure.