V-Day not just couples’ day

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, and if you’re single, this can be an annoying or depressing day. You have two options as a single person on Valentine’s Day. At least most people see only two options.Option one: reject the holiday; it is so commercialized now that regardless of the history behind it now mostly brings pressure to spend an outrageous amount of cash on a significant other.

I can hear the complaints now, “People should show that they love each other every day,” “it is only a commercial holiday that makes the guy feel like he has to buy a chick an expensive present,” and so on. These are all true statements, but Feb. 14 is still seen as the one day a year celebrated for solely love and showing love to your partner or spouse.

Option two: choose to mope around looking through photo albums of exes and spend the day with Ben and Jerry’s, taking the “Singles’ Awareness Day” route. You’re not alone. Many people opt for watching romantic movies alone and pouting, but why do that to yourself? It is torture, and it doesn’t make you feel better.

I have chosen to do neither of these things this year. Since Valentine’s Day is on Monday, you can pretty much ignore the holiday and work or go to class as usual. I planned to do that until realizing whom I have been neglecting in my life, someone I don’t show enough love for everyday and should celebrate with this year.

Yes, I plan to dedicate this day (or rather the weekend before this day) to spending time with one of my favorite people: me.

Why not treat myself and spend time doing the things I enjoy? Nothing, to me, is better than getting a massage and a manicure and then sitting down with my family for a favorite meal. Why do we feel pressured on this day to focus on romantic love? It is just as special, if not more so, to spend it with people who will really love you forever.

It is important to point out that this day is not exclusive to couples, so don’t get too wrapped up in that idea if you’re not in a relationship at the moment. This isn’t to say that it is bad to celebrate with a love interest, but I suggest not focusing on material gifts but instead on each other.

If you are solo, I suggest setting aside this weekend to indulge in your favorite activities.

Make time for things you are usually too busy to enjoy. Take out someone you appreciate, not necessarily in a romantic way. Have a movie marathon. Get a group of other people who aren’t celebrating Valentine’s Day with a significant other, and go bowling, or even have an anti-Valentine’s Day party.

Whatever you do, share the day with someone you love, even if that person is just you.

If you, like many of us, compare your situation (in my case being single) to your friends or relatives’ relationships, you will probably overlook the bad things and just assume that the couples you know are all happy.

The truth is that isn’t generally the case. I declare this Valentine’s Day a day for real love: love for yourself, your family, your dog, your passion for making origami lizards, whatever or whoever.

Regardless of how you feel about Valentine’s Day, it isn’t going away anytime soon, as Americans tend to find excuses to spend money and eat chocolate, myself included. You might as well embrace it. Just remember not to take it to heart if you don’t have a romantic partner to celebrate with because it isn’t as important as loving yourself.