When Your Valentine Can’t be With You
Valentine’s Day – it seems people either love it or hate it. At least, there’s a great deal of hate for it on Facebook nowadays and of course, outcry against the extreme commercialization of relationships. But for a widowed person this sweet holiday can feel like a punch in the gut. Having a whole day dedicated to the relationship you’ve lost is a miserable and potentially anxiety inducing event. Maybe this is your first Valentine’s Day alone or, like a dear friends of mine, your last Valentine’s Day with that special someone.
Valentine’s Day can become a symbol of pain and loneliness even to it’s most avid celebrators. While grief can never be extracted from a loss, there are some efforts you can make this Valentine’s that can bring new meaning and comfort to this grim day.
So, in an effort to cut some of the anxiety out of your February, here are some simple and practical ideas just for you on how to spend the 14th in ways that are worthwhile, meaningful, and loving.
- Get a Massage – treat yourself to something important, healthful, and rejuvenating. Massage Envy is a great place to go and there’s almost certainly one close to your house.
- Connect with friends – plan to do something altogether or have them over to your house for dinner and a movie. Usually being around people we love and that make us laugh are great distractions on tougher days.
- Surprise someone – give an unexpected gift, take a lonely neighbor flowers (purple tulips are my personal favorite), bring doughnuts to your coworkers, or tip your Starbucks baristas a little extra.
- Encourage others – spend some time writing letters of encouragement and thankfulness to your close family and friends. Looking at the blessings in your life and in turn blessing others is a wonderful way to honor this holiday. Here’s a how-to if these seems a bit daunting.
- Create – write a poem, draw a picture, or plant some flowers – create something that symbolizes or captures where your heart and mind are this Valentine’s Day.
- Eat – treat yourself to your favorite meal or maybe cook up some of your spouse’s favorite foods. Enjoy yourself, indulge a little, and cherish your spouse as you enjoy food that they savored.
- Reflect on the love you have had in your life. If your spouse has passed away, look through old albums, remember Valentine’s Days from the past and journal about them. Maybe you could even write a love letter to your spouse. Even though these memories may stir-up pain, it’s important to remember that you loved and were loved deeply in return. It’s a beautiful thing to dwell on.
Let me leave you with this jewel of wisdom as you go into this Valentine’s Day. No matter where you are, you are in a unique place in your life.
Do the best you can with it, and from us to you, have a MEANING-FULL Valentine’s Day!
and enjoy it!
What are you doing this Valentine’s Day? What traditions do you observe when you are missing your spouse?