This is something that I'm pulling from the recesses of my memory. Come back with me, will you? You see, only a mere three years ago, I absolutely hated the thought of Valentine's Day. I was 23 years old, single, living with my brother and his family and not wanting anybody to point out the fact that I had nobody to share this holiday with. It was an extremely hard holiday for me to get through. I thought that Valentine's Day was merely a day to show me that I was still alone. I was still not in a serious relationship. I was still without someone to truly love me.
I hated Valentine's Day. I hated it so much, in fact, that I was known to throw anti-Valentine's parties. My single friends and I would get together and watch girl power movies - anything with NO romance in it! I didn't understand the point in having a holiday dedicated specifically to loving someone else when I was farther from that state than snow is from Hawaii. There was absolutely nothing that was going to make me appreciate the holiday. I hate hate hated it and wasn't ever going to change my mind.
Then one day, my absolutely loving niece, Lexie, came home from daycare with a card that she made specifically for me. The inside of the card was covered with foam hearts that read "I Love You", "Be Mine", "Kiss Me" and "Hugs". The fact that she had taken time to make a card specifically for me completely melted my heart! That's the year that Lexie and I were each other's Valentine. That's the year that my then four-year-old niece showed me that Valentine's Day doesn't have to center around romantic love, but it can be a time to focus on the blessings of the people in your life.
This beautiful girl taught me a very valuable lesson, without even knowing it! She taught me the beauty of true love. She taught me the beauty of celebrating Valentine's Day in a way that most people don't: while her parents went out on a date, I babysat her and her younger brother. We jumped on the bed, we danced and sang, we baked and ate junk food, we played games. We enjoyed being together.
Though the feelings of loneliness weren't completely gone on that holiday, it was drowned out by the feeling of the love of my niece and nephew - all starting with one little Valentine's Day card that, to this day, I have kept and completely treasure.
Happy Valentine's Day to all of you. Here's hoping that, no matter if you're single, in a relationship, married, divorced or widowed, you will find love in the family that surrounds you and in the God who created you!