Valentine’s Day is Over, but Continue the Love

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My sweetheart and I in 2002.

I am not a big fan of Valentine’s Day. There, I said it. While I love the idea of celebrating love for each others and remembering the people we love the most, I don’t think I need a day in a calendar for it.

Even though I am not a big fan of Valentine’s Day, it is a great time to remind ourselves not only to show our appreciation to each others on this one special day, but every day. I have been married for 13 years this summer, and every single day I feel that I am more in love with my husband. I have to say though, it hasn’t always been this way. We’ve had our fair share of difficulties, like I think everyone does in their marriage. I don’t think happy marriage comes easily, and “just is”, I think it needs a lot of work. And with work I mean watering the plant and helping the love grow, and it’s fun work. I don’t think it just happens, even though I can testify that I believe in the love at the first sight, and I still love him, years after the first sight. But to keep it going – you do need to work for it, and be committed to it, and it takes much more than getting the Valentine’s Day right.

I think Valentine’s Day brings many people pressure to make their Valentine’s Day special, and with that always comes (high) expectations, and sometimes those expectations are not met; whether it’s yours or your spouse’s. And trust me – the way how he handles Valentine’s Day doesn’t equal to how much he loves you.

I almost think my “gift” to my husband is that I don’t require a romantic Valentine’s Day – that means no stress of getting the perfect gift, no pressure to get it right, because most of the time he can’t read my mind what I really want anyways. Nothing ruined my Valentine’s Day more than knowing that only reason he bought me a Hallmark card and flowers because his mom had asked him to do so.

See, I just don’t want a gift, I want the perfect gift. And I don’t want to tell what I want (making it difficult to please me), I want it to come from the heart. But with that I have pretty precise expectations (that he should pretty much be able to read my mind) because we are soul mates. Ideally, he should do exactly what I want and when I want, because that happens when it’s true love, when we are soul mates and it all comes from the heart.
Yeah, right.

See why I much rather just skip it entirely? Because my expectations of a perfect Valentine’s Day are unrealistic and to avoid disappointments I rather celebrate our love in many many other ways.

So my crazy theory is that I much rather not ask my husband to try to read my mind what I want for a Romantic Surprise On A Special Day, because most likely he would not be able to reach my expectations. And then he is able to read my mind or surprise me in a romantic way on a regular Monday and when he does – it is better than anything else; it is a genuine surprise, genuine love, and no expectations to be met, and that’s why it’s perfect. Plus, I get helluva more “Valentine’s Days” this way than once a year. Because yes, my Romantic Expectations are still pretty high even though I don’t celebrate the Feb 14th. That’s just because I believe that we should work on our marriage and our relationship every day, not just on special days. To me having many surprise Valentine’s Days and celebrating our love just because is living life to the fullest. Oh, and by the way – I am perfectly fine getting the heart shaped box of chocolate a week late after it has been purchased on sale…

Whether your Valentine’s Day was perfect or less perfect, remember to continue the romance in your relationship every day. If Valentine’s Day is your thing, I salute you for mastering the day of romance, but I ask you to treat a regular day every now and then just like it was Valentine’s Day and see how much fun celebrating love is “just because”.

About Katja Presnal

Katja Presnal is an international lifestyle expert with a mission to inspire people to live life to the fullest. She has been featured in NY Times, Glamour, Redbook and Woman's Day magazines among many other national and international publications and written for MTV3 and Lifetime TV networks. Read Katja's full bio and connect with Katja on Twitter as @skimbaco or @katjapresnal. Katja is currently living her happily-ever-after in Sweden with her husband, and three children (whom were all born in different countries within three years). When not working she is cooking big family dinners, planning her next trip or skiing.

Comments

  1. Yes!! We celebrate our love everyday. We usually cook a romantical meal on V-day, however, this year I was sick, so it’ll be this weekend. That’s it – we cook together, celebrate that way. It isn’t about the gifts on ANY holiday, it never is. We try really hard to show that to our children.

    Naomi is completely correct – Valentine’s Day is NOT an occasion in which a man should be forced to purchase expensive gifts. I hate those jewelry commercials that tout that message. Not every woman wants or needs a diamond to be proven her husband loves her! Grrr!

  2. Exactly. I also think it’s important for those of us raising daughters to think about how we’re treating the holiday. I’d rather Roo think of Valentine’s Day as a time to make crafts for her friends at school than an occasion for a woman to force a man to give he expensive gifts! What kind of role modeling is that?!

  3. We also approach the holiday with “celebrate every day” versus just one specific day. Marriage takes a lot of work but the results of that work is so rewarding if you focus on it daily versus just a few times a year. This year we focused on our 5 year old son who was SO excited about the holiday. He got a kick out of signing the cards and hiding them until that morning. He put together little packages for his grandparents and he even fixed breakfast for mama (well with Daddy’s help of course). He said the favorite part of the holiday was telling others he “loves them”…well that and the candy of course. But he tells us that 4-5 times a day already so I think he loved the focus on it for an entire day non-stop. Happy Valentine’s Katja! We love you guys!

  4. Agreed, it’s fun to celebrate for the kiddos though!! And I love Lisa’s idea about getting candy 50% off, I may just head over to my grocery store today!

  5. THIS. exactly!

  6. I do love Valentines- not for the big romantic gesture but that it is a day when we are supposed to focus on love. Love your post!

  7. I used to make V-day such a huge deal but after celebrating 20 valentine’s day together, it’s like ok, what do we get each other. Since we have 2 girls, it’s all about them. The kids LOVE getting chocolate hearts and I love buying them the day after at 50% off! lol

  8. I love this Katja! This is exactly how I feel!! We don’t do anything special JUST for V-day, but we occasionally do special things all year round. But I do love the thought of a day to reaffirm our love for each other!

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