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Friday, February 14, 2014

Worst Valentine's Day

I've never been big on Valentine's Day whether I've been in a relationship or not. I'm apathetic about it - I could take it or leave it.

For the most part Joe and I don't really celebrate it. It feels too forced, too commercialized (as most all of the holidays have become). What fun is it to get chocolates, flowers, and a dinner reservation when that is what is expected? Not that I wouldn't mind some chocolates, flowers, and a dinner reservation! But it would mean more to get it 'out of the blue' and not on Feb 14.

Over the years Valentine's Day has become just another day.

However, there is one memory that stands out for me. The memory of the worst Valentine's ever. I'm sure most of us have a story or two like that. Here's mine.

The year was 1987. I was in 8th grade and still 13 years old.

For whatever reason our school decided to have a fundraiser of sorts for Valentine's Day - students could purchase carnations to send to someone anonymously or not-so-anonymously.

Yeah, like that was a good idea to do in middle school. What a way to really draw attention to the popular kids in school, right? As if middle school wasn't hard enough to find your way.


My then-boyfriend and I had broken up earlier that year. (And back then, having a boyfriend meant we held hands as we walked to school and went to the base movie theater - it was nothing as intense as it seems to be now.) So I knew I wasn't going to be getting any carnations. Which I would have been (mostly) ok with, but then I heard that he sent A a dozen of the red ones. Twelve! Carnations! Oh how that hurt my young 13-year old heart.

There were 4 or 5 girls in my French class, A being one of them, who received multiple carnations. Our teacher made such a fuss out of them and their bunch of flowers by ushering them to the front of the room. She made such a spectacle oohing and aahing over their flowers and having them pose for a group picture. She was also our yearbook adviser. Needless to say that picture was enshrined in the pages of our yearbook to forever remind the rest of us of that Valentine's Day.

I know I was in the majority that day - most of the students did not receive carnations. Only those handful of students who were in the young-love, early-teen years, middle-school coupledom ... and the popular kids.

What an in-your-face reminder to the rest of us that we didn't have any secret, or not-so-secret, admirers. To walk through the halls of our school throughout that day without carrying even one lone carnation. Oh the emotions of a 13 year old trying to make it through the day without any tears!

I guess it scarred me so much and that is why I don't care much for Valentine's Day - ha! Thank goodness I grew up and, no, I don't still harbor any ill-will for that day in 1987 - it's just one of many strong memories of my childhood!

So let's hear it - what are your own stories of a Valentine's Day gone wrong?



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8 comments:

Stephanie said...

I don't have any Valentine's day gone wrong stories, but I just don't care for the day at all. I'm not into those gooey shows of affection at all. It's not who I am. I find the cards in particular to be so sappy they make me gag. If I get my hubs a card, I usually get a blank one and write my own message. I just find the whole thing silly--if you need a special day to someone that you love them, then that's a problem!

PS--we had a similar thing in our junior and senior high school years with sale of flowers and candy grams. Sometimes I got something from a friend, sometimes I didn't. It was very much a popularity contest as it was the same people over and over getting the majority of the flowers and candy. I hope they don't still do that because I could see how a kid would feel left out very easily.

Bailey's Leaf said...

It's my anniversary, so I'm really rather fond of it. We don't go overboard and never have. Still, to us it is a special day.

And yes, I was the kid who was left out of all of the deliveries of all things like that. I cringed when stuff like that was delivered.

Sabrina said...

My private school did that carnation thing too on Valentine's Day, and my friends and I used to send pink (or it might've been white) ones to each other. :)

To Love Endlessly said...

No bad memories of Valentine's for me. For me, it stands as a day throughout the year to tell the people in our lives that we love and care about them. I pass on the couples "crap" and embrace anyone that makes our lives special: kids, educators, family. We don't take enough time to express our gratitude for others, why not use Valentine's as that day? ;0)

Jisun said...

Oh my goodness. I have the EXACT Valentine's Day memory. Why do schools do these kinds of things? I'd never suggest doing that at a middle school. Or any school!

We don't do much now either. Dropped the kids off and now I regret what a big dinner I had. ;)

Anonymous said...

popular kids probably suggested the "send carnation" !! that is so wrong even if it was for a fund raiser!! and the so called yearbook teacher advisor is the worst in my book. how insensitive was she!!!!!!!! and see it still haunts uou to this day. love mom

my family said...

oh that's terrible especially at that age. we dont do anything for valentines day either. I think it is too commercialized also. I do get a bag of treats for the kids but nothing big at all.
Actually I deliver flowers on the 13 and 14th for a friend who owns a florist so I think its a fun day bringing people such happinesss, plus I don't have to get the kids from school and I deliver until about 5pm or so getting a little rare time to myself.:)

LJ said...

In first grade I had surgery that kept me out of school for the first half of the year. When I went back around end of January I didnt know my classmates by name. When we passed out Valentines for the big day I just signed my name to them. Then they all started coming back to me. They didnt want my Valentines because I didnt address them by name. Oh my broken 7 year old heart. Probably one of my earliest memories of knowing that kids would be cruel to me. (First memory is when I had just begun Kindergarten and it was circle time and everyone moved away from me when we sat in front of the teacher.)