It’s Valentines Day! A day to cherish love! According to our societal norms, individuals are to spend this day celebrating the love they have for their significant other by buying them gifts, going to the movies or whatever it is that those love birds do on this auspicious day of theirs! I wouldn’t know since I have been single all my life. Let’s take a second to dart back into history to find out how Valentine’s Day came about.
Valentinus, commonly known as Saint Valentine, was a “rebellious” priest (note: the irony in this statement) for he had dared to perform weddings for young soldiers under the hardline rule of the Roman Emperor. As a result of his “disobedience,” Valentinus was prosecuted and jailed. While in jail, he fell in love with his jailer’s daughter, Asterius and during her sickness managed to nurse her back to health. Before his execution – which took place on 14th February – Valentinus wrote a farewell note to his beloved that ended with “from your Valentine.” Ever since then Valentinus’ death anniversary has evolved into a 14 billion dollar tradition that celebrates love and passion.
There is a misconception regarding this day. Valintine’s Day is regarded as a tribute to all lovers; hence, individuals that are single – such as myself – do not feel as though they can enjoy this day as much. However, it is important to understand that love has no restrictions or boundaries; in fact, it surpasses all of that. Saint Valentine’s love for Asterius gave him the courage to overcome the horrors of his reality, which was shrouded by royal egotism. Despite knowing his life was at an end, he found a new profound life within love itself and that was what made Valentinus continue to love dearly and deeply even in the midst of senseless hatred.
Therefore, Saint Valentine’s story is not only about celebrating love with the significant other, but more so about celebrating the power of love to blind hatred, bridge difference and bring people together. There are different types of love. One could love their family, friends and so on. Hence, Valentine’s Day is not just restricted for your Valentine, but for all those who you love dearly.
HAPPY VALENTINES DAY!