Not another Valentine’s Day

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CARLA BIANCA V. RAVANES

CARLA BIANCA V. RAVANES

I LOVE celebrations. I celebrate absolutely everything from important holidays like Christmas and New Year, to silly moments like Mondays and the beginning of a month.

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That being said, it’s only natural for me to be overly excited about Valentine’s Day. And even if I did not have a Valentine (until this year), I never sulked at being single. Instead, I used to the opportunity to spread the love—even through little notes and treats.

As a junior in high school, I recall packing Hershey’s Kisses in little plastic bags and pairing them with little notes to give away to friends. The tradition continued up until a few years back. As the eternal Little Miss Sunshine, I have always believed that love is always something to be grateful for.

However, as I grew up and wiser—add to that the 100 and 1 “hugot” posts on social media—I started feeling cynical about the day of hearts simply because it’s another day to remind us of one’s “blessed” singleness. At one point, I marked the day crying over Never Been Kissed while the world celebrated with their significant others.

For some time, I also thought it was uncool to spend Valentine’s Day with family but looking back I am grateful to have spent it with the people who will always be there for me.

In recent years, I have come to appreciate my parents and my siblings more than I have previously. Here I was trying to look for love elsewhere when it was just at home. And their love, though tough at times, will always be the number one most stable thing in my life.

My love for family and their love for me has been a good barometer on the other loves I allow into my life. Most of us miss out on love simply because we are not thankful enough to the love that is offered to us at present.

We keep whining about the love that has left us (which is probably not love because if it was, it should have never left) without appreciating the love that gets us through the nights of heartbreak and disappointment. The love that stays with us, listens to us, and comforts us is the love worth appreciating.

This Valentine’s Day, do yourself a favor and stop bemoaning over someone who left. If they left then God knows they play no part in your life. Move forward. God has great blessings ahead if you only learn to let go.

And while I am no expert on love, I dare say that the right love will never leave us hanging, wondering, or constantly overanalyzing. In fact, real love makes us better versions of ourselves because we are secured in the love given to us. We grow from it and not constantly question our self-worth.

But more than being blessed with a love like that, this Valentine’s Day is extra special because my eyes were finally opened to the truth of what love is.

Love is more than just words whispered, it’s staying up late to remind our special someone that they’re appreciated. Love is the parent who works hard without abandon to provide for their family. Love is the boss who goes beyond work hours to make sure everyone in the company is well taken care of. Love is the friend who listens to your sob stories over and over again without judgment. Love is the brother who just sits down to listen even if all he wants to do is smack you. Love is also present when you give yourself the opportunity to experience it.

That cheesy song is true, love is all around us, all we have to do is open up ourselves to it. Today, take a moment to appreciate the love that surrounds your life and watch it grow into what you have always dreamt it to be.

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www.carlabiancaravanes.com

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