I currently know five close friends who are pregnant. A sixth friend gave birth last week.
Valentine’s Day is this week and while some think it’s just another consumerist holiday, I’d say that many of us appreciate the holiday and wake up in the morning hoping someone is thinking of them a little more than usual.
As a single, childless woman, I could approach Valentine’s Day a few different ways.
1) Act crazy. I love Valentine’s Day! It’s the best holiday Ev-ah! I give cards and candy hearts to everyone, wear pink and red, and reveal my secret crush.
2) Be apathetic. It’s just another day dedicated to consumerism. We should tell people we love them every day of the year, and send flowers on unexpected occasions. February 14th means nothing.
3) Slink around in bitterness. Woe is me; I don’t have a partner to bring me red roses or children to write me cute poems. Nobody loves me, I’ll never get married, everyone else’s life is better than mine.
4) The Kyla method. I look for the middle ground of #1 and #2, and fight #3.
I never want to be a bitter person, blaming God for the things I don’t have. Life is full of joy and gifts at every moment, waiting for us to see them. I’ve met too many women who are bitter with God for not giving them a husband, children, or the perfect “this or that”. I refuse to accept anger and bitterness, especially when I’ve been given so much.
If, on the other hand, I flip to the opposite extreme and “act crazy”, I’m usually just acting out some form of denial.
I can’t pretend I don’t want a romantic Valentine’s Day. Shoot, for the chance to smell flowers at my desk and cook a fancy dinner for a man followed by making out with a cheesy movie playing in the background, I’d absolutely give in to wearing pink and acting like a fool.
The reality of Valentine’s Day, for me, is that I sincerely appreciate the reminder that love is beautiful and fun. That includes all types of love: friendship, romantic, etc. I am happy for my friends who have given birth or are preparing to (I include children because love tends to produce them), and for the friends who are engaged and cuddling on the couch with someone this Valentine’s Day. Yet while I appreciate love and a day to celebrate it, my heart also aches at the search for the romantic version of it.
During this week of Valentine’s Day celebrations, I hope those of you celebrating will be renewed in your love for the people around you. For those of you who long for a Valentine, I hope you express that longing in healthy ways. It’s okay to admit unmet desires, but please don’t let them control your life. Life offers many gifts; I don’t want to miss them because I was focused on something else.