I’m spending Valentine’s Day with… someone?

Photo by Graham via Flickr

Luis Santana/Opinion Director

Normally, I spend Valentine’s Day evening hanging out with a couple of friends just watching TV or playing some video games. The whole time I spend time making glib remarks of how “this is a Hallmark holiday,” while wishing secretly that I too could be spending this romantic holiday under the intoxicating power of love.

This year is different though, as I will actually be spending Valentine’s Day with my date at Vagabond. At the venue there will be a local act, Jean Jacket, playing a tribute to The Cure called “Friday I’m in Love.”

No longer will I just be doing things for myself on this day. Instead I’ll be spending the day with my date, but when I begin to examine the upcoming day, I notice the differences being in a relationship has made in my life.

I notice that no longer do I only have to think about myself. Instead, I’m thinking of the person that I am going to spend my day with. I’m thinking about what I should get her, what we should do and ultimately what will make her the happiest.  That’s what scares me – not only about Valentine’s day, but relationships in general.

I’m not accustomed with having to think of other people in my life. Sure, I care about my family and close friends, but I’ve never really been in a serious relationship where I’ve had to show a level of caring and it’s scary.

It’s scary because caring about someone means you are putting your heart on the line and allowing yourself to possibly get hurt. It means that you need to watch what you say around your significant other, because you don’t want to look like a fool – which I’ve done many times. It means you no longer go to the store to buy stuff for you, but you buy things that the other person will enjoy as well.

Relationships cause you to actively examine yourself. You notice the things in yourself you can improve.

I am now masterful in the art of door holding, as my girlfriend can attest. But I’m also horribly adept at sticking my foot in my mouth, as she can equally attest.

Soon enough, you meet their family and learn how to interact respectfully with their parents – not only in family gatherings, but also in more private settings. You learn there are some jokes you should make, and others that you shouldn’t. There’s things you should say, and others you shouldn’t. You learn that, if the other person really cares about you, they will stick by you, even when you do really dumb things.

For me, this is the first Valentine’s Day I’m spending with someone that I’m actually in a relationship with. It is a “Hallmark” day for me, not in the sense that I’ll be buying cards from said company, but that I’ll be remembering all the moments up to this point.

I’ll remember the moments during winter where we huddled together for warmth. I’ll remember when I told her that I wanted to kiss her and how scared I was. I’ll remember driving home those nights being happy that I’m no longer alone.

Standing there during the show, I’ll look forward to spending many more days like this with her.

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