Unlike most girls under 20, I had a habit in my youth to develop mad crushes on the jerkiest and most aloof boys in my class. (I opened the sentence as I did to spare feelings, I’m pretty sure most girls choose the jerks to crush on.) Every Valentine’s, I made my box to receive cards and went to school to wait for that one card from that one boy. It never came. My every Valentine’s was met with perforated cards, signed in mass quantity.
I have always been a romantic, so I was deeply disappointed on every Valentine’s Day up until I turned 20. At 20, my single friends and I agreed to have dinner together and share the misery, because there’s no “I’m going to be single forever” like a pack of 20 year olds in a Christian university. 20 is practically an old maid in one of those institutions..
It was all fun and bitter games until Valentine’s Day 2000. I was 22 and hanging out with Eric Peterson, some guy two years younger than I whose friendship I enjoyed, but did not see dating him as in the cards. I had celebrated with my single girlfriends earlier in the evening and had already forgotten it was Valentine’s when I was with Eric.
Long story short: Our evening took a funny turn when Eric says he wants to date me, I say I have no plans to date him, he says, “alright then, do you wanna just get married?”, I say, “When?” It was hours later, after we set a date for six months out, that we realized it was Valentine’s – probably the most cliche day on the calendar to get engaged and we did it on accident.
Since then we have not celebrated Valentine’s, I suppose it is our way of thumbing our nose at the industry of it. Secretly, though, I am still a knock kneed third grader with a decorated shoe box and waiting for someone to slip me a sweet something just for me.
I decided that this was the year we were going to go ahead and live my dream. I started months ago by e-mailing Eric a list of jewelry items I really like. I revved it up by sending him a text with links to a pair of earrings. I bought him a gift and have reminded him for days on end that I bought him something. I also told him straight up that I secretly want it to be a big deal, but that I don’t want to have to beg for it because then it does not come from a natural place. I don’t consider my near daily reminders as begging – just being helpful.
This post is not really for you. The truth is, I hacked into Eric’s e-mail and subscribed him to this blog months ago. Now, I just need to click “publish” and wait for the parade of red and pink to begin, because if it doesn’t…
May you all have a Happy Valentine’s day, be ye single or coupled.