It’s Valentine’s day today. My husband and I don’t have any grand plans for tonight. Well, we did go to a movie yesterday (I can’t remember the last time we went to the cinema, think it was probably 5-6years ago?), and maybe a simple dinner together tonight.
Looking back at our relationship over the past decade (yes, it has been that long!), it’s interesting how our notions of romance and Valentine’s day have changed over the years:
During the initial dating period, 14th of February meant expensive gifts (think flowers and diamonds!) and dinner at fancy restaurants. The day would be marked prominently on our calendars, and it would be a BIG event that we eagerly anticipated (ok, maybe it was only me, my husband was anticipating a big hole in his pocket).
After marriage and before kids, it was long walks, going for a theatre performance/concerts, me trying to cook Valentine’s day dinner. Gifts were still somewhat extravagant (jewellery, but no flowers).
Now, two kids later, we don’t go out of the way to celebrate. I’ve also decided that it’s safer to eat out instead (did I mention that I’m a lousy cook?). We prefer having a simple meal together at a restaurant/café in the neighbourhood, where we can just relax, enjoy each other’s company and laugh out loud (not so advisable in a posh restaurant!). Gifts, if any, are thoughtful and practical: “Here’s a white dress watch, I know that you’ve been eyeing one for some time”. “I bought you a new computer since the one you have is getting quite old and slow”. “I got you a replacement strap for your favourite watch.”
Both of us have agreed that Valentine’s day is a clever (and very successful!) marketing ploy started by a florist/chocolatier/restaurant/Hallmark. Roses at $10 a stalk and a $200 Valentine’s day dinner anyone?
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that we will denounce Valentine’s day. It’s just that we have moved to a stage where we are comfortable with each other, with no unrealistic or overly romantic expectations of how Valentine’s day should or should not be celebrated.
For me, Valentine’s day celebrations should continue, not for the gifts or the fancy dinner, but for an additional reason to spend some time together as a couple.
Happy Valentine’s Day to all!
Do you celebrate Valentine’s Day? What will you be doing today?