Let’s have a conversation.
The kind that was never meant to fit printed on a half-inch candy heart.
Let’s talk, (real, beating) heart to (aching, pumping) heart.
About this day sneaking up on us pretty darn quickly.
Eeeuurgh. I can’t tell you what a mix of dread and gagging and curiosity and giggles gets stuck in my throat as I say that.
And this year, I’ve really been thinking about why I have this awkward reaction to the Walmart aisles drenched in pink.
I’ll admit to you that the source has been an honest to goodness wellspring of bitterness in my patchy past. I’ve murmured “Yeah. Happy Valentine’s Day” to people while glancing nefariously out of the corner of my eye towards the couples doused in sunlight, wearing matching clothes.
And I’ve been one half of a cutesy couple, oblivious to the people around me as I dug into a Valentine box which was sent across mail call lines and states to appear at my door.
But this year, in my state of being uncoupled, I’ve not got bitterness towards love in my heart.
Because truly, I love the idea of having a day which commemorates the ridiculous magic of love. I love seeing buff men holding flowers and little teddy bears in Walmart, sporting a sheepishly masculine expression on their faces. I love the glitter and the chocolate. And I secretly really like the color pink.
So this year, I didn’t understand my internal disdain for V-day until I sat down with myself and had a good chat with the deeper parts of my heart.
And here it is. The reason I can’t put my weight behind this day.
My love for you is too big to be held inside a box of chocolates. Because you are wild like the ocean, strong like thunder, growing like a tree, burning like a sunset, gentle like a whisper, and my love for you has never been that weak.
And me, I’m messy. I am a strange girl filled with contradictions and laughter and flaws and a liking of sadness which makes me cling to melancholy playlists, and I have dancing feet and writing hands, and anybody who ever tries to love me true will find that it takes more love than can be folded up inside a Hallmark card.
For all the ways that Valentine’s Day is supposed to celebrate love, all the teddy bears in the world stacked on top of each other have never come close to reaching as high as the kind of love that I hold inside.
Because it is fierce.
It is flying, singing, glowing, and reds and pinks and whites have never held it right, and heart shaped confetti has never even started to show off how it shines.
My kind of love, the kind I have to give and the kind I am waiting to be gifted with needs more than one day, more than the twenty four hours laced into February fourteenth.
I need weeks on weeks and months on months of years filled with fiercely brave love.
I think I mentally groan at Valentine’s Day because I’ve decided that it’s not enough.
Not enough for a girl whose heart is on fire from the deep love poured into her by God and family and all life has taught her.
Not near enough for a girl like me.
-Jessi Sanders 2013