The Boy from Virginia discusses Illusion Day

On the 14th day of February, many couples probably ask questions along the lines of “How did I live so long without you?”, “Why did God make you so loveable?” and “Is tonight a good night for us to use the handcuffs?” Many couple will have eaten out at fancy restaurants, bought expensive gifts, or have done something ridiculously mushy because they felt they should have. But the question I tend to ask is, “Shouldn’t the mushy stuff be happening all year round? “Why relegate it all to one measly day in the shortest month of the year? What’s the purpose of a day of love when it’s clear, from everything happening around the world, that love is needed every day of the year? 

Granted, I am not one/half of a couple at the moment, so to some, my questions may come across as not so couple-friendly. But hear me out: I’m starting to notice that the usual V-Day trends (though followed by the commercial, “partnered” members of society) are being either neglected or just plain old abandoned. Gone are the days when single people wallow in their so-called loneliness. Instead, you find people reclaiming Valentine’s Day as Singles Appreciation Day. Or, there are some people, like myself, who have dubbed the day “Illusion Day” (My reason for the title: If you weren’t loved by your significant other prior to V-Day, then there is no guarantee that that love will manifest itself after). Also saying goodbye are over-the-top couples looking to invest the money they didn’t spend at Christmas into an evening out or a lavish gift for the one they love. As the world continues to make advances in technology, politics (Go Egypt!), and some forms of media, I ask: Does love ever advance? Is there a sort of progression when it comes to love, whether it be alone, in a pair, or just spiritual? Does love always continue to grow? And if it does, and if it starts to manifest itself every day, will days such as Valentine’s day soon be obsolete?

 I am of the firm belief that no one should tell me what I can and cannot do. But then again, I am single and am happy to say that I still have that luxury. However, when holidays as intrusive as Valentine’s Day start making their returns each year, it’s as if someone is screaming “LOVE LOVE LOVE SOMEONE NOW (Big scary voice) OR ELSE!” Yikes! Calm down adverts and calm down over-the-top romantics! No one is doomed if they don’t find love before the 14th of the year. It is not a benchmark or a deadline, nor has it ever been. Well…not since I was 12. Fact is; Valentine’s Day is simply a day and what happens any other day will happen on that day. People will go to work, a mother will argue with her child, a man will fumble for change as he steps onto the bus, and a homeless man will, despite his pride, ask a stranger for money and be refused. Tons of ordinary scenarios will happen and the only think extraordinary will be the behavior of people trying to show one other person what their love is. It’s almost like trademark love. What makes my love different that someone else’s?

 The idea that love is shown differently is one that, I feel, is seldom discussed. Love has it’s degrees and varying stages, I guess. In my life, I’ve known protective love, distant love, feauful love, adventurous love, sincere love, and love at its. There are more adjectives that I can put in front of the word, but they would still have the same thing in common; I have experienced a form of love. It may not have been the Disney Version, or even the Shakespeare version, but love was in there somewhere and I can’t disregard it. What’s also interesting to me is that all the different loves I listed came from multitudes of people. Neither adjective was exclusive to one individual. At some point, all of my friends have felt some kind of love for me. For this I am grateful.  So why is it that, as people in this world, we go out seeing one type of love? This is a question that I don’t intend to find a direct answer to, but it has always interested me. Is there one love? And if there is one love that we can all successfully find, what exactly are the ingredients that make it up? Lastly, if we end up finding this unique, one of a kind love, what happens next?

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One comment on “The Boy from Virginia discusses Illusion Day

  1. Marcus says:

    Thank you for this insightful blog. It does seem to be that Valentines Day is a very significant day. ‘What are you doing for Valentines’ people ask as if it’s Christmas, New Year or Halloween, knowing very well that if you are single the answer is probably, ‘Not a lot’, ‘Wallowing in misery with a tub of Ben and Jerry’s’ or ‘Celebrating my single freedom’. It is, as you say, just another day. But throughout our history we have dedicated days to celebrating or remembering different things, events or people. Birthdays, Christmas, Rememberance Day, American Independance, Thanksgiving, Hannuka, Eid…the list goes on. These are days in which, even if we carry on with the banality of life, a small part of our minds might focus on somthing different, might remember somthing and act differently.

    Commercalism has taken over these days, in many cases, and, as February 14 approached we cannot help but see red love hearts, flowers and cards filling up shop displays, TV shows and billboards. But, with all thoughts of commercalism asside, make Valentines day a day when we think about love. And I mean love in all its contexts. The love you feel for your parents or children. The love you feel for your friends. The love you feel when you look outside your window and see a beautiful sunrise. The love you feel when someone offers you their seat on the tube. The love you feel when someone complements you on your outfit or you listen to a wonderful piece of music. And, of course, the love you feel when your solemate walks in the room and your life feels complete. All these types of love should be and deserve to be celebrated all year round but having that special day when you focus your intention on it and go out of your way to show love for another, I believe, is truly beautiful to behold. Forget roses, chocolates and dinners in restaurants. Everyone has experienced love and, more importantly, everyone has so much love that they can give. There is only one type of love and it is the force of everything that is good in this world, it is freedom and beauty, light and humility…it is life in its every essence.

    Weather in a ‘Relationship’ or not, we are all in a relationship with humanity as a whole and with ourselves and, I think that Valentines Day, is a day for showing and using that.

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