[Originally written 2.6.07]
Please take a moment to read about the origins of Valentine’s Day and educate yourself on how this ‘holiday’ came to be. In years past, I often asked and wondered how it all started, so I found the article to be highly informative and quite different from things I was taught in grade school. However, the traditions that once were truly signs of love have become distorted along the way into something that makes me want to vomit pink. To make things perfectly clear, I am not “bitter” or “jealous” or anything like that. As a matter of fact, I have taken this stance since I was in high school, because I felt that buying the crap which apparently would show how much an individual liked or loved someone else [or perhaps as a cheap way to get in their pants] was just supporting the corporations that spent ridiculous amounts of money on ad campaigns and mass-producing the nauseating items.
There is no surprise that I still feel the same way today. Furthermore, I am not an angsty or disillusioned teen; I am an adult and I still do not believe how utterly ridiculous people become when striving to please the object of their desire. Last year my dear friend Jon and I observed the annual tradition of protest on the thirteenth of February, by dressing in black and going to Cherry Hill mall, which was quite the entertaining experience to say the least. The official Anti-Valentine’s Day celebration occurred the following day, for which we also draped ourselves in a blackened wardrobe and went bar hopping on South Street. We got incredibly shit-faced and wound up at Tattooed Mom’s where one of the most emotional conversations we ever had took place.
Of course I loved this man greatly and often felt it was something that many people do understand, which might have something to do with the fact that he was not someone I discussed with others. Jon evidently felt the same way about me and during the six years we were knew each other, he remained a close and loyal friend. There were various reasons we did not have a romantic relationship, mostly due to the fact that I had been dating other people. In the past there were many moments were loose feelings that slipped out, but he was a gentleman and respected my choice to be involved with other men. When that was no longer a factor, he certainly no longer held restraint over his feelings and I have to say it was quite overwhelming in the most wonderful way possible. As we sat in the back seat of his ’49 Mercury on that fateful evening , Jon revealed his feelings for me once more and ignited a spark I did not think existed – and it was damn good.
The following month he asked me to marry him, but there were things in both of our lives that had to be straightened out before I could even consider the committment. However, we agreed that once those things were in order, we would be together forever. This story should have a happy ending. For all intents and purposes, it certainly was supposed to. Instead of finally being with a man who loved me unconditionally during all those years in which we grew closer and closer together as dear friends, I am left with only my fondest memories of him. My brother, my partner in crime, and by far one of the most influential people in my life, was taken from me last Summer. His death was no accident, and while I have grieved and continue to celebrate his life to preserve everything that he stood for, his death has changed me in ways I find difficult to explain.
Jon meant more to me than I can put into words, and not having him in my life has left a hole in my heart that I tried and failed numerous times to fill. It hurts, but I always put on a plastic smile for everyone and rarely talk about how I really feel. Since I am tired of that, I feel being honest is the best way I can communicate my feelings. While all of these people are reveling in their expensive gifts and dinners and sexcapades, I find great disdain in their blatant exhibitions to the point of nausea. Not so much because it is something that I am without and covet. Believe me, I see the way couples are and looks can often be deceiving. Though on the outside many appear to be happy, beneath this public facade there are arguments and tears and drama and bullshit. In my heart, I know that I am far better not having such nonsense in my life, mainly because I am too old for such nonsense and have no time to waste on it any more.
My heart feels empty and while it has been suggested that I “move on”, there is little desire to and contempt for those who hurl such hurtful words. Relationships for me have been lust-filled lies, deception and bullshit to get into someone’s pants. Certainly that does not accurately describe all relationships, but I am still mourning the loss of someone who meant the world to me and not exactly in the right frame of mind to be considering the pursuit of a relationship. Instead, I will continue to wear the ring Jon gave me, as it is by far the only true symbol of love that I possess, and I will hold onto it for as long as I wish. It represents the one man in my life that never tried to fuck me over, in any way shape or form.
The next time you throw a tantrum because your boyfriend, lover, one-nite-stand, what-fucking-ever didn’t get you exactly what you wanted [or hey, maybe even nothing at all], consider yourself fortunate to have someone who at least made some sort of effort to please you. Some of us have been left broken-hearted and no amount of gifts will ever fix that. Pardon me while I carry on my unpopular tradition because it actually means more to me than mass-produced merchandise does.