Just to be clear from the get-go, I like flowers. Nothing against flowers. I’ve received, grown, and bought many a flower that’s made my life a happier place.
That said, I probably won’t be getting flowers on Valentine’s Day. There’s the slightest chance my husband and kids will stop off at the store on the way home from school to satisfy some candy craving and, on a whim, might grab a bouquet for me, but I’m not counting on it. And I certainly don’t expect it.
We — my husband, Tenzin, and I — are not holiday people. Part of this comes from a history of him having to work in the emergency room. You quickly learn not to put a lot of weight on a specific day. But really, we’ve always just been weirdos.
We don’t surprise each other with presents because if we want or need something and can afford it, we buy it. The idea of secretly going out and purchasing some big ticket item without the other one knowing about it makes me feel like I’m going to have an anxiety attack. If he went out and spent a thousand bucks on surprise jewelry or something, I’d think he’d lost his frickin’ mind. That whole “car in the driveway with a bow on it” thing? Not that we could afford it, but if either of us went and secretly made that deal, oh dear lord…
I’ve known people who are very big on holidays. There’s a lot of pressure to get each other gifts that adequately demonstrate that each of them “knows” the other one and finds him or (usually) her valuable. Inevitably someone ends up pissed or in trouble.
Not that I begrudge anyone wanting to party it up for the sake of partyin’ it up. I understand wanting to celebrate whenever the opportunity presents itself. The older I get and the more people I lose, the more I realize that life is about teasing out the small bits of happy wherever you can find them. I mean, hell, we once had a birthday party for the car.
But the way I see it, Tenzin doesn’t need to pick special days throughout the year to show me he loves me or to be super-extra nice to me because he does that every day. If he’s not home, he’s working his arse off to provide for the family. And if he is home, he’s working his arse off taking care of the kids because I’m a train wreck. Or he’s cooking dinner so I’ll actually eat something. Or he’s wading through his giant to-do list so he can eventually get to do something he’s interested in for once.
This morning, Tenzin got up with the kids and got them ready for school. He rubbed my arm and told me to keep resting because he knew I felt terrible. And when he got home, he changed an appointment so he’d be able to spend more time with the kids.
So I don’t need roses to remind me that I’m loved. I’m more than happy to go flowerless today and for the rest of the year.
(But if someone were to grab me a bag of Valentine’s peanut M&M’s, that might be a different story…)