I was young. My yellow room was lit in a hazy filter of sunlight, that somehow ended up muted despite the colour-match.
The curtains were open because I had been sitting on the cold, deep, white window ledge, looking out at the dark water again last night.
I turned around and gasped. A teddy-bear, a rose and a card were sitting beside me.
I was delighted. Hug-a-me, the bear, is still with me today. Or, rather, at my parents house, so, really, about 30-mins away in a river-view house. Close to my brothers, my Dad, and the person who gave him to me.
When you grow up in a single-parent household, you get used to two things. One, being alone in some fashion or form. I’m an extravert, but I had so much time alone as a child that I ardently champion my alone time, space, and boundaries of both space and time to anyone who will listen.
Second, you get used to creating a special and different kind of Valentine’s day.
I do, actually, love Valentine’s day.
Yes, I’ve heard all the arguments against it. And, I even agree with some of them.
It doesn’t mean shit next to a memory drenched in pale sun, soft toys and flowers. None of those arguments mean a thing next to the memory of someone wanting me to feel, really, really wanted.
It maybe shouldn’t be Valentine’s Day for me. Not in the ‘buy lingerie, buy flowers, seafood and strawberries and chocolate’ way. Maybe I should have made a different name for it, put that imagination of mine to use…
I’ve been meditating lately on how two native speakers can speak the same word or sentence, and mean completely different things. I’m not talking about punctuation placements changing meaning, I mean that the context of a word or phrase can be something completely ‘other’ based on life experience.
We know, rationally, that this is actually true. People of different identities, whether race or gender based, describe having different physiological experiences of walking in a carpark at night.
I have a very sweet feeling around Valentine’s, that’s very much linked to family-love. Strange, right?
I like it though, today is somewhat impervious to the roller coaster of my own love life. Quite frankly, it’s not tied to a single person.
I hope you feel loved today. Not because you are or are not with someone. Simply because you deserve to feel that, as much as you can. Even if it means diving into memories.
I wanted to write a love-poem today (I sort of did on Instagram, though two were ancient enough…) but instead of writing that, it struck me that maybe I could share something else. Something less romantic, something different, something heart-full, in a new way.
I want you to imagine that you’re warm. You’re wrapped up in clean sheets. You showered last night, and the faint scent of your favourite body-wash and shampoo seems to waltz on your pillow. They leave a fading peaceful scent, like the fading notes of a fragrant orchestra.
Your senses are alive and tingling. Your mood is high and light, you can feel a sense of giddiness arising.
You know the sun is shining. As you watch dust particles glistening in front of cotton curtains, you imagine they are small beings of light. Imperceptible, almost, playful, always.
You become aware that there has been a disturbance in the room, but rather than worrying, you’re excited.
You turn and find your giddy anticipation rewarded – there, you find roses. You find a card.
You smell the fresh scent of the young flower, and you tenderly open the card (unsure of what might fall out.)
I want you to breathe deeply in, and slowly, slowly out. Imagine what the card says – it is full of a sense of love.
You are loved for all you are, and you are welcomed into your day with a sense of belonging that is not only sure, but playful.
You can’t wait to be a part of today…
I hope you enjoyed that mini-meditation 😉
Writing for Valentine’s Day has been a sort of Valentine’s to myself, re-igniting a beautiful memory. So, thank you for reading.
I wish you a beautiful day and night – Happy Valentine’s Day 🌹