Thursday, February 16, 2006

A retrospective on Valentine's Day

I had lunch with a friend on Valentine's Day and we were talking about how she and her husband don't celebrate the day,
"loving and showing love to one another should happen everyday." I totally agree in one sense, but at the same time even in though I think Valentine's Day is a cliche' I too want the flowers delivered to my door, the secret love revealed, the love note written with thoughtful and inspiring words, the fancy candlelit dinner. As I was reflecting further on this I realized that my USA culture has instilled in me since childhood the value of this 'hallmark holiday'. In Elementary school we all had boxes that other kids could put Valentine's into. Undoubtedly, you'd count to see how many you had and who sent you what type of message. Imagine 5-12 year olds are counting to see who likes them and who doesn't. This year I got a Valentine from my nephew, it was a Darth Vader Valentine. I thought, "nothing says I love you like a message from the dark side". Funny, I think. Junior High comes and you can send the $1 carnations with notes attached that are delivered throughout the day or in a particular class period. The angst I went through every year, would I get carnations or not. I didn't really want a carnation from a girlfriend, although the thought was appreciated. And if you didn't get any flowers, you'd just watch the other kids getting them. At the time I would have never sent one to a boy, some of the 'wild girls' did. I really wanted to be one of those girls deep inside. So onto Highschool. The expectation keeps getting higher, when carnations are replaced with roses and all sorts of extravagant gifts/bouquets are sent to the school office. The whole day students names are called over the intercom, or notes are delivered to class. I think the office ladies were as into as anyone. The pressure just gets worse as you hope, pray, long for someone to see you, to remember you on that day. I would always even hold out hope all the way until I got hope, thinking the guy would be clever and send them to my house. Even now, as much as I hate the cliche', the marketing scheme behind Valentine's day, and say I don't really care. I do. I can't help it. I want the flowers, I want the love notes, the life-sized teddy bear holding chocolates (the bear is figurative in this case), the jewelry. Just a few days ago I found myself thinking, 'maybe someone will show how much they care today.' I felt like I was counting valentine's in a box, waiting for that flower to be delivered or my name to be called. It reveals the desire for someone to love me out in the open and seen by everyone.


The Bearded said...

A belated Valentine's wish...

I have come to realize over the past 6 months that I have the ear of much of the Christian single male community here in the Little Apple. In every conversation on the subject, save one, your name has been mentioned.

You are well thought of and I will continue to encourage these men.

The Bearded

Pr 13:12

Blythe Lane said...

Joy, thanks for dropping by My Little Corner and for your kind and encouraging words. Just spent the last 20 minutes catching up on your thoughts. Wow. Was deeply blessed by your willingness to share openly where you're at in your journey. Many of your questions/musings about singleness and ministry and being a woman really resonated with my own journey these last 9 years. It can be a lonely pursuit in life living with open and unanswered longings. But I will tell you, college gals need to see that open, honest heart lived before them. They need to see hot, godly women living trasparently and authentically, pursuing Jesus in the face of unfulfilled desires!!! :-) You are definitely one of those women!

Larka said...

Yeah! I agree. I had a super Valentine's and got my Valentine's from my brother. A good guy friend took me to lunch and recognized that I am worth being enjoyed even if I am not romantically enjoyed at this time. My body combat girl is married and was also saying she doesn't indulge in the day. I was geared out in a shirt that said love at the time. I think our culture does go crazy but I think it is true about our heart longing as well. We want to be chosen and to be loved spontaneously and extravagantly byond the day to day. We get them from our own Father who longs for us to chose him daily but also is delighted in our actions and words toward when we lean heavily to engage with him.
I'm with you and love your exploration into your own heart's response to all this.

Correnta said...

Oh, I have so many thoughts on this, many in agreement with what you've shared and what others have shared and others that we have just shared in conversation.
I thought I would just add one thing here,
I can't wait for your name to be called, for someone to love you out in the open and for it to be seen by everyone. I can't wait for you to have your "Eiffel Tower" experience (remember Jose Pepper's?) You are totally worth it!