February 14th, Valentine's Day--what other day tends to make single men and women feel more awkward than that one holiday? Okay, maybe the one exception is New Year's when all the couples in the room are busy sucking face, but that's not my point. On Valentine's Day, all the lovely couples are celebrating, reminiscing, and lavishing their time and money on their significant others while all the single people sigh and awkwardly wait for the day to die. There are five categories of people to note on Valentine's Day:
1) Lovely dovey couples who are incandescently happy together--The relationship or engagement or marriage is holding up beautifully and the appropriate Valentine's Day gifts have been bestowed upon one another and the world is a beautiful place on this harmonious day. Beautiful.
2) Heartbroken souls who haven't quite healed yet from their last duel with love--You might find these people mopily listening to pathetically depressing music all day and night long. The romantic day is salt in an open wound for them.
3) Upset girlfriends who quietly complain to themselves and their friends that their boyfriend either bungled the day with a stupid gift or forgot about the day entirely--Girls will know what day it is, but guys, on the other hand, could just care less. The clashing of opinion could certainly yield to some enchanting passive aggressive behavior from some girls. Beware and proceed with caution around this unique species.
4) Bitter folks who will mock the notion of love and chivalry and the gifting of roses that will die within two weeks--Cynical is what they are, but there's probably a good reason why.
5) The dreamers and the desperate--The day (and the days leading up to it) are filled with sappy tweets and statuses screaming to the world how desperate they are to find love. They dream and sigh the day away waiting for love to magically come riding up to their doorstep. Some will accept the first offer they can find just so they aren't lonely on this lovey-dovey holiday.
Valentine's Day is always met with mixed emotions from the public ranging from strong approval to pure disgust, but dear reader, I believe there is one important thought we all should hold with us as we advance towards Feb. 14th: The holiday celebrating romantic true love has always targeted couples obviously, but I wonder what if instead it targeted everyone else (the heartbroken, the bitter, and the dreamers). What if the message to convey on this day was "Open your heart to love"? What if we willingly opened our hearts to allow room for love? How much happier might we be then if we allowed for this change to embrace us?
So...my first piece of advice in the search to find love: Don't ever close yourself off from love. May love melt away our bitterness like warm sunlight dissolving the last frost of winter. May the hurt and the broken souls in this world find peace and compassion. May the dreamers take the leap of faith and finally set out from their hobbit hole in search of the love they've been hoping and dreaming for.