Valentine’s Day, Love Day, V-Day.
It goes by many different names, but more than that it comes with so many different emotions. For some it is filled with anxiety thinking about the expectations of a partner. “Is this enough? Will they be happy? Surprised?” “Will my friends be impressed with what I post on social media about my V-Day?”
Other couples are happy to celebrate their love, regardless of it being “love day” because they understand that every day is an opportunity to express their love. Then there are the ones for whom it is a day marked with grief and loss, perhaps due to a recent breakup, or even a death. But today, I want to talk about the emotions of the single, the often lonely and the ones that can feel so over looked and left out on this special day.
Hello! My name is Ashley-Dawn, and I am “one” of you, part of the “singles club”. I am 29 years old and honestly never would have imagined that I would spend this many Valentine’s Days single, so I’m with ya! I have only ever had a boyfriend on “love day” twice in my life. Once when I was in grade 9 (so that barely even counts, right?) and when I was 22. I can honestly say that this is not a sad day or even week for me, though. And I would like to tell you why.
I believe this a day, that just like all the others, we have an opportunity to give. Last year I posted about the heart. Not about a fun date or beautiful flowers that I received. The quote I wrote said, “The heart is such a fragile thing. It is a true honour when people choose to share it with us. Remember to always handle hearts with special care for they are the greatest gifts of life.” #heartday
The opportunity is to care for hearts, not only other peoples’ but also our own. I understand that it would be wonderful to have a special someone who plans a beautiful date and has flowers delivered to your work. Girl, I get it! I was sent flowers for the first time in my life last October. And do you know who they were from? One of my closest female friends. We put so much emphasis on love coming from a romantic relationship that we don’t stop to recognize that love comes in a thousand different ways, even on Valentine’s Day! And far beyond that, you have the power to GIVE love!
I have had my heart broken, shattered, cracked, bruised and everything in between. And every time I go through those feelings and disappointments, I want to give up. I want to say, “I’m done. I’m closing my heart and won’t give any more love.” How many times will I willingly give love, only to be rejected in return?
I cried with Jesus a couple months ago about this. And do you know what He said to me? “This is what I go through every single day. I love so much to bring healing, and sometimes they accept the love and healing, but they still reject ME.” That might not make sense to you, but the way I see it is that love is the most powerful tool we have to change this lost and broken world. The truth is that “We love because He first loved us.” (1 John 4:19). He is our source of love! You never lose when you give love. It might hurt sometimes and be disappointing when you don’t get the results you expected. But we are called to be like Christ, so shouldn’t we be choosing to love, even if we risk that love not being returned?
I believe beyond a shadow of a doubt that I will get married one day! But what am I doing with my today? Am I sitting here just wallowing in disappointment and self-pity because my friends get to enjoy their awesome date nights, post about their super-hot husband that they’re so proud of, they’re daily #mcm? Actually, I’m not. Because what does that benefit me? Nothing. If you’re honestly not content being single, then take a look in the mirror and ask yourself what you’re doing to give love instead of focusing on the fact that you’re still waiting to receive love.
I have given A LOT of love in my life, and honestly, I love giving love. It can cause a lot of pain at times, but thankfully the heart heals, especially when you’re connected to the Healer. I have no regrets over the righteous love that I have given to others, whether they were a potential husband, a friend, family, co-worker or even a stranger.
For some details on practical suggestions on how to make your Valentine’s Day a positive experience check out Ashley’s (the other Ashley) post “Valentine’s Day Isn’t Just For Couples”. Below I also leave you with eight quick suggestions on how to spend your Valentine’s Day so that your love tank is overflowing because you cared for other hearts and your own. The most important thing – take initiative.
1. Volunteer in a community event that gives love to those in need
2. Plan a night with your friends – singles & couples
3. Send your girlfriends flowers – or have a flower exchange
4. Go out for dinner with a close friend or sibling
5. If you’re close to your family, spend time with them
6. Take your mom on a date!
7. Buy yourself flowers! I actually do this every year. It started because of “winter blues”
8. Most important – Prioritize spending time with God and let Him fill up your love tank