Valentines’ Day Post-Mortem

 

I think we can safely consider Valentine’s Day 2012 done and dust worldwide. Some of you are probably sitting there thinking you got a little short changed. The diamond on your ring not big enough, the flowers not expensive enough, and yes you could have been taken to a better restaurant than the one you went to. I mean what are your friends going to think the next day at work when they ask you and you tell them that you went a three star restaurant instead of the five star with the celebrity TV chef?

Others will be over the moon about all the wonderful things your lover did for you on Valentine’s Day and how shocked you were at the extravagant gift you received when the truth is the person in your life knows the hell that he’ll go through if he doesn’t go out of his way, spend his week’s salary on a gift that meant nothing for him to give you accept for buying peace in the relationship if only for a relatively short time.

And then there are the single ones who of course got nothing again this Valentine and possibly spent the night feeling sorry for themselves or pining over a lover that jilted them. Or worst a failed relationship that was never going to work.

I read a lot of articles leading up to Valentine’s Day in the papers and magazine. Despite the range of different ways in which the articles were approaching the subject of love, the underlying sentiment was mutual.

There is a lot of confusion in our modern day fast paced lives about where love fits in. Where should we fit love? Before or after our career ventures or is it somewhere in-between?

We live in an age where women are considered to be equal to men in most areas of society and women enjoy a level of individual freedom and career opportunities that weren’t available to previous generations.

Yet emotionally our expectations of romantic love haven’t changed.  Are we still dependent on men for our emotional freedom and happiness? And is this dependence or expectation somewhat out of line with our new identities as free members of society who are not only capable of bearing children but are also intelligent enough to hold high positions in both politics and commerce.

Are you really in the right to be giving your lover/partner a hard time if Valentine’s Day did not live up to your expectation?

Many years ago I got into an argument with a girl I used to work with. She turned up to work in a state because she had broken up with her boyfriend.  I asked what had happened and why the relationship ended (she ended it).  She told me is because he didn’t make her feel special and didn’t treat her like a princess. ‘Really’, I asked. Yes. And apparently he didn’t tell her she was beautiful enough. This was a young woman about to graduate from a journalism course.

When I suggested to her that it was silly of her to expect anyone to tell her that she was beautiful all the time and perhaps he had better things to do with his life and time than worrying about how to make her happy she burst out in tears. Of course I timing could have been better.

I feel that as women we want to have our cake and eat it to. On one hand we want to be treated as equals on the other we want men to put as on a peddle stool, admire and worship the ground that we walk on.  Somehow we believe it’s our right and the media feeds our delusions. So when Valentine’s Day comes around we want to be showered with more affection. But how much affection have we given?

I had the best Valentine’s Day in the world and I didn’t get a present. My day started off at 8 am on Skype where I waved madly at my two brothers on the other side of the world and then my father. The sound on their end wasn’t working so I had no idea what they were saying but they were happy and they kick started my Valentine’s Day.

Next was spreading the love that I was feeling to some lovely women in my life via a quick text. An hour later I drove to my family home in Melbourne with flowers for my sister who greeted me with screams and hugs and we danced around the living room like a bunch of fools.

The afternoon was reserved for my mother who loved flowers and I hate how selfish I’ve been that I haven’t indulged her love for flowers as often as I should have.

Finally my boyfriend. He got a home cooked meal with dodgy looking chocolate strawberries and blueberries as desert and a year off not worrying about what to get me for Valentine’s Day.

As for me, I got the sense of satisfaction knowing that my self of self worth is not attached to the material gifts I get in my relationships with people.

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