Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine's Day makes me...

by: Joelle Charbonneau

Valentine's Day makes me sigh. No. That isn’t in a heart fluttering, wow isn’t that romantic kind of sigh. It’s a why do we do this to ourselves kind of sigh. That isn’t to say I don’t love romance and all that jazz. I do. I think romance is wonderful. I just don’t find Valentine’s Day all that romantic.


I’m guessing it my feelings go back to high school days when some organization or another sold flowers to commemorate the day. You’d buy a carnation for a dollar, choose the color and fill out the card for the person you wanted to send it to. There were red, pink, yellow and white carnations. During the week before Valentine’s Day the flowers went on sale and then on Valentine’s Day itself the flowers would be delivered with the card during the school day to the recipient’s classroom.

Harmless, right?

Wrong. Because some kids got dozens of flowers. Others got none. I never lacked for at least a couple of flowers, but I had to feel bad for the kids who didn’t get any. The kids who for lack of money or because their friends thought the flowers thing was stupid didn’t get a single carnation. The lack of flowers didn’t mean they were loved any less than the kids who had fistfuls of the half-dying, poorly dyed carnations. But the look in their eyes and the snide way they talked about how stupid the flowers were told their own story. And it made me sad.

Which is probably why when helping my son do his Valentine’s Day for his preschool, I found myself proud of my kid who wanted to give everyone that he ever met in his life a Valentine. The kid tirelessly wrote his name on the front of his Dora Valentine’s (that he picked out all on his own!) and after each one wracked his brains for the next person that needed a card.

So in honor of my son’s method of celebrating the day, I want to let you all know that you are incredibly special to me. I am always amazed and honored that those of you I know personally and those I only know from this blog are kind enough to be my friends. You are all amazing and I hope you take the time to not only celebrate the special people in your lives today, but that you also celebrate yourself.

Happy Valentine’s Day my friends. May it be filled with happy sighs and lots of chocolate!


  1. Yeah, I was one of those kids. It was about making people happy then.

  2. We always gave a card to every single kid in class--and so did my kids. Happy Valentine's Day Stiletto Gang and all the followers.

  3. Yeah, I'm with you on this, Joelle! And I'm from the home of the commercialization of the day, Kansas City, MO, home of Hallmark Cards. Anyway, Happy Valentine's Day to you, Joelle!

  4. Well meaning teachers can do such harm to children without meaning to do so. That's terrible about the carnations. It's something some poor kid would never forget. You didn't and it didn't even happen to you.

  5. Technically, I don't think the teachers or the organization selling the carnations wanted to do harm. But I have always had a soft place in my heart for anyone who never got a flower....for whatever reason. Nowadays I'm even less excited to receive flowers, but that mostly has to do with the cat who always decides to chow down on the posies before prompty getting sick.

    I hope the flowers you all receive fare better!

  6. You should be happy and proud because you raised a son whom, without prompting from you, wanted to include everyone he knows in Valentine's Day, that says something awfully good about your parenting!

    May your day be filled with the peace of knowing you are doing a good job!

    Happy Valentin's Day!

  7. Happy Valentine's Day, Joelle! I like to think every day should be Valentine's Day as far as showing the people I love my affection and telling my husband that I love him. Your son sounds like a sweetheart! If only every child (and adult!) could be so thoughtful and kind, the world would be a better place. :-)