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Opinion: In defense of Valentine's Day

Childhood memories fuel appreciation of Feb. 14

Published: Friday, February 14, 2014

Updated: Friday, February 14, 2014 18:02

There are two types of people on Feb. 14 — those who think Valentine’s Day is an overrated pit of commercialism and those who consider it a treasured holiday. Let me make it clear as to which camp I’m in. I love Valentine’s Day.

Nowadays, you see anti-Valentine’s parties, people that believe Valentine’s Day is overrated and too mushy or individuals that only love it when they’re in a relationship. For me, it’s different.

Now that I’m 19, it’s considered weird to look at the back of card boxes and laugh at the one that says, “Here comes the smolder.” But, as far as I see it, the only downside to Valentine’s Day that comes to mind is that Rapunzel Valentines didn’t hit the shelves until 2011.

Good thing being weird doesn’t bother me.

Let me take you on a journey back to Valentine’s Day in elementary school, where my infatuation with the holiday began.

Your teacher probably gave you homework to decorate a box, bag or other Valentine-holding device. For me, the process is more of a yearly ritual than an assignment. I remember decorating my shoebox with wrapping paper, sticker hearts and some drawings from my little artistic hand.

Shopping for your perfect Valentine’s cards is the next step. You get to choose from cute distorted animals, your favorite animated characters and funny puns, all of which come with matching stickers, tattoos or possibly some lollipop hearts.

The icing on the pink cupcake with heart sprinkles was always that moment when you walked into the classroom after recess and saw how the “class moms” decorated the room for the Valentine’s party. Between the brightly-colored plastic decorations and the table of sweets the teachers would soon regret offering, I got to walk around, cookie in hand, giving Valentines to my fellow students. It was the best social hour elementary school had to offer.

It’s unfortunate that some people think it’s just a day to remind them of how forever alone they are.

Contrary to popular belief, I don’t love Valentine’s Day just because I currently have a boyfriend. Ever since elementary school, I have been a fan. I love getting to be creative, I love chocolate, I love puns and I am a hopeless romantic. I blame Disney movies and books for that one.

While I have been lucky enough to celebrate this holiday twice with a Valentine, this holiday rooted in my childhood isn’t just about a “significant other.” My parents always make my brother and me a little Valentine’s gift basket. Even now that I’m in college I still look forward to the small present.

To me Valentine’s Day isn’t the one day in the year you show your love. It’s a fun holiday that gives you an excuse to do something special for someone you care about.

Also, having access to an endless amount of chocolate is pretty great too.


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