Valentine’s Day. How am I going to style it? I’m really not sure how I feel. Part of me quite likes it despite being single.

Yes I could rant on about the commercial aspect, but also isn’t it quite pleasant to have one day in the calendar where we have to remember to be romantic – if we are in a relationship. But that’s the trouble with the styling. For those of us that aren’t, it can feel like another day for other people’s lives. Like Mother’s Day and Father’s Day is now for me.

But still I like it. We can still make little gestures. Life rolls along and we are swept with it, seeking and finding, wanting and having. ‘Remember how you used to buy me flowers?” For one night we can hang up the hang-ups and leave work at the door, switch off the phone and be with those we love. And love comes in many guises.

It’s been a long time since there’s been committed romantic love in my life. There are advantages and disadvantages. “You’ve been offered the American tour!” “Shit, what’s Brunhilde going to say?”

I’m going to spend two or three weeks driving all day and then collapsing face first into my sheets, sprawled all over the bed. I sometimes wake up and there’s a pillow on the ceiling and another one in Egham. I’ve found a way to hook my feet into the bedframe and stretch myself starfish like I’m on a rack. Sometimes I wake up, sit bolt upright and speak complete sentences of garbage out loud. Sometimes if there’s no work I’ll sleep until afternoon. Nobody but I has to suffer the consequences. I can get home and dump clothes on the bedroom floor for five days running and until I run out of clothes nobody objects. One time when I was sick, I blew my nose into the duvet cover. I didn’t change it the next night. Yep. Hi ladies. Just last week I spilt coffee on my sheet and slept on it for three days before I changed it.

So yeah, I guess I’m looking for the advantages. I get to be a slob. But… Being a slob isn’t really that satisfying. It’s just being a slob.

I’d get just as much satisfaction from finishing a difficult task. Like tidying the huge pile of junk I’ve collected. More than just the momentary endorphin rush left over from childhood of “screw you mum I’m not gonna clean today”. I keep my bedroom neater these days unless I’m sick or just crazy busy. Why not? Every time I get home and the bed is made I smile to myself as I go to sleep. Better than wondering why I can faintly smell coffee as I doze.

I’m off to see a friend. Honouring the part of the intention of this day that is to do with connection. There is love between us too, and care and respect. I was going to just go home but she called and invited me. Initially I said “no, I’m too tired”. Then I realised it’s just my dark energy trying to win. I rang her back moments later. Now I’m glad I did.

Happy Valentine’s Day. I hope you spend it with someone you love. Even if that someone is yourself.



Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

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