Valentine’s Day has always ranked right up there as one of my least favorite holidays. There were never any candlelight dinners and roses. No chocolates or sweet notes. My ex husband was not invested in celebrating this holiday, and so instead, I turned all of the holiday excitement into our children. I loved on them, cooked a special dinner for them and always bought them chocolates and candies to celebrate the day.
But I always felt left out. Being the mom is hard. If your spouse doesn’t make the effort to celebrate you, then who does?
The very first Valentine’s Day after my divorce I spent alone. No children and no spouse. No friends. All day I wavered back and forth between pity and courage. I was sad and upset. I felt unloved and empowered to love myself all at once.
Around 3:00 that afternoon, I found my courage and pulled myself into the bathroom for a nice long bath and got dressed. I put on a cute dress and took myself to dinner. I messaged a sweet friend who was the pastry chef at my favorite restaurant and told her I was coming (strategically so I wouldn’t back out.) I walked in, got a seat at the bar and ordered myself dinner. I was nervous. So many couples. So many strange looks, but the staff was amazing and even brought me a gorgeous, custom dessert to end my meal.
That evening I people watched, talked with the bartenders and reminded myself that it’s ok to love myself. On a day I felt so broken and alone, I found myself.
We get so lost in doing for our spouses, doing for our children, doing for parents, siblings, teachers, friends that we forget that we are important also. If no one celebrates you this year, I hope you remember to celebrate yourself.