I need to air a grievance.
I have a real problem with people complaining about Valentine’s Day.
My biggest problem lies with the people who mope around every February 14 if they don’t find themselves in a romantic relationship on that day. Many of these people tend to scoff at the idea of a day centered around love and call it “Single Awareness Day.” They believe that this day is one singled out on the calendar to bring attention to them and hence, allow them to wallow in self pity.
I have a problem with calling a day aimed at recognizing love “Single’s Awareness Day,” because of this: None of us are single.
On Saturday night–Valentine’s Night–I threw a party for some of my best girlfriends in Miami. Some of us are in relationships, some of us are single, some of us are juggling a few men. Regardless of our romantic status, the celebration was about one thing: Love.
Being in love is the opposite of being single. So often, though, people read that last sentence I typed and believe that the only type of love one can be in and not be single is romantic love.
That, my friends, is so, so, so far from the truth.
In the last year, I’ve experienced more love than I’ve ever experienced. And I know exactly why that is. I experienced more love in the last 365 days, because it was in those days that more so than any others in my 30 years I allowed myself to be loved and give love to others.
None of us are single. None of us are single, because none of us lives on a deserted island.
Rather, each of us lives in a world filled with people whose biggest desire is to be loved.
When I realized that what people want the most in life isn’t money or fame or social status, but love, my life changed. My life changed, because I realized that even though I may never be rich, famous or the most popular, that I can always be love.
If you can be love, you are never single.
What does being love look like?
To me, being love is about being intentional.
Yesterday, I saw a friend that I haven’t talked to in a couple months post something on Facebook that indicated she’s going through a tough time in life. I took two seconds out of my day to text and ask if she was ok.
A week ago, I noticed that I hadn’t seen a woman who works at a store on campus at work in a few days. The next time I saw her, I asked if everything was ok.
I go to the same Starbucks several times a week. In the last month, I’ve made it a point to memorize the barista’s names and get to know some of their interests and backgrounds.
Loving others is simple. To love, you show people that they matter. You empathize with them. You demonstrate your care for them.
We all do it. We all do it because were are not on this Earth alone.
And because we do it, none of us are single.
On a lighter note, the party was pretty great.
There were roses and a few too many bottles of champagne. By too many bottles of champagne, I mean, if we wanted to, we each could’ve had our own.
I made sliders and homemade french fries that I packed into french fry boxes with labels that read, “Fry Love You!” My friends made enough delicious sweet treats to fill a bakery.
There’s a magazine that is published for the neighborhood I live at in Miami. This month, the cover of their issue featured a story on the top-45 bachelors in my neighborhood. When I saw this issue lying in my mail room, I picked it up. You know, for entertainment purposes.
As I prepared for my Valentine’s Party, the sorority girl lying dormant in me suddenly had a great crafting idea: Dates-on-a-stick.
I spent a good amount of time cutting out pictures from the issue and glueing them onto sticks with each guy’s bio on the back of them. I then displayed them in a red, sparkly box and allowed my guests to pick a date-on-a-stick when they arrived. It was all in good fun.
Later that night, we went out in Miami. The best moment of the night came when we were out at a popular bar and my friend leaned over and said, “Um, I think that’s the guy on my stick.” I looked at her stick. I looked at the guy. Sure enough, it was.
I made eye contact with him and said, “Albert?!”
He said, “Yea! Do I know you?”
I said, “Um, well no. Not really. You’re on my friend’s stick, though,” at which point my friend propped the stick up and waved it at him.
Rather than being horrified by this entire scene, Albert was actually pretty generous. He chatted us up and even posed for a few good-hearted pictures.
My Mom asked the next day if he asked my friend out. I had to tell my mom that believe it or not, life isn’t a romantic comedy. So no, the date-on-a-stick didn’t ask my friend out on Valentine’s Day. But man, someone in Hollywood should pen that script!
So, romantically single she remains. Single in this world, though? No. This world is filled with love. It’s up to you to find it!