On Sunday, those who are in a relationship will spend the day with their significant other, reminiscing about the past and thinking about the future. Those who are single may spend the time sulking, or going out on â€œun-Valentineâ€™sâ€ day dates.
In 2009 in the United States, Valentineâ€™s Day generated $14.7 billion in retail sales, according to Telegraph Media Group. However, Valentineâ€™s Day can be so much more than candy, flowers and â€œstuff.â€ This day should be used not only to recognize your significant other, but your friends and family as well.
Originally, Valentineâ€™s Day was celebrated to help women with fertility. Men used to strip naked and use dog or goat strips to spank womenâ€™s backsides. Well thank goodness we have evolved from that.
Now, this day is used by people around the world to express their love to one another. When people think of Valentineâ€™s Day, they think of kisses and gazing longingly into another personâ€™s eyes. Now I know what some of you are thinking: â€œPlease gag me!â€
Trust me, Iâ€™ve been there. I remember what it was like to be that one lonely person, who sat in the corner while everyone else had someone dote on them during the day. Okay, I may not have sat in the corner, but I knew what it felt like to be left out.
You do not have to feel that feeling, even if you are single. You have people all around who you can tell that you love. Your friends and family give you an opportunity to find someone to cook for, to spend time with, and to share a laugh.
That common phrase, â€œI hate Valentineâ€™s Day,â€ does not need to be uttered. I know there is someone out there is thinking, â€œI donâ€™t have any friends or family here.â€ Then you can spend some time loving the person that is closest to you: yourself.
Many times people do not take the needed time to recoup and breath. It is important to take time every day to make yourself happy, and to learn to love yourself.
Iâ€™ve heard the phrase, â€œhow can anyone love me if I donâ€™t love myself?â€ Iâ€™ve learned that is a bunch of garbage. Many people may love you when you donâ€™t love yourself, and you may never even know. If you donâ€™t love yourself, you must take time to learn about the real you and learn to love the person who is there. Letâ€™s face it, you arenâ€™t going to be leaving yourself any time soon.
So Valentineâ€™s Day can be used for several purposes. You can love yourself, as well as others. Some of you will remember back to the column I wrote on To Write Love on Her Arms, and that applies to this as well.
You never know how much that small gesture can mean to someone. Maybe you noticed someone down your hall seems a little depressed. Grab those pink sticky notes, and write him or her a little note that brightens his or her day. They donâ€™t even need to know it is from you. Itâ€™s the gesture that will count.
It is estimated that 1 billion Valentineâ€™s Day cards will be sent this year worldwide. Twenty-five percent of all cards sent each year are for Valentineâ€™s Day cards, according to the Greeting Card Association.
So how can you celebrate this day? You can do it several ways, from a small budget to elaborate plans. Short on cash? Hand-make Valentineâ€™s Day cards and give them to your friends and family. Have a little extra to spend? Find a nice restaurant to take your significant other to or go out with a group of friends and celebrate the love of friendships.
Spend Valentineâ€™s Day how you wish, but remember to share the love on Sunday.
Robyn Scherer is a senior animal science, agricultural business and journalism and technical communication major. Her column appears Fridays in the Collegian. Letters and feedback can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.