Happy Valentine’s Day everyone! V. Day has been all about my kids this year. We had to make cute handmade Valentine treats for all my younger son’s friends and I got store-bought Dark Knight Valentines with pencils for my older son’s friends. It was all very important and exciting for them. I was happy to help them since it seemed very sweet and innocent and was all about friendship at this age. There is no heartache or anxiety about potential romances yet.
Today I was at my fourth grader’s school to help the other PTO moms organize and distribute the Valentine pretzel-grams. This is a sale where the kids can purchase a pretzel for themselves or any friends and on Valentine’s day that person receives a surprise pretzel-gram with a personalized message. We went through a few thousand pretzels today since some kids received multiples. I saw one child get a bag of 14 and a teacher was gifted 20 pretzels! First of all I don’t know what any one person would do with that many pretzels but I guess it is the thought that counts and not the wasted food. Then, ‘the thought of it’ got me thinking and feeling bad for those kids who for whatever reason may not have received any pretzels. Even if it may not have mattered to them otherwise, I’m sure they would feel bad when a fellow classmate is receiving 14 pretzels. It just becomes a popularity comparison for some and kids’ self-esteems are vulnerable. I asked some of the organizers about this and they said that it had become an issue in the past so this year the vice-principal will be sending one pretzel-gram to each child who did not get one and they will receive it in the same delivery. I thought this was a nice gesture. I suppose the popularity comparisons can still go on but at least there is no child left without a treat.
Valentine’s Day can be an extravagant day of gifts and romance for some but for others it can be a depressing day that reminds them of what they are missing. For me it is just a day to remind me to acknowledge and appreciate my husband and the two little men in my life. I also don’t mind that this holiday celebrates one of my favorite things… chocolate! I hope that my kids can enjoy Valentine’s day for many years before the pressure or cynicism about it sets in. I hope that their friends or I can be their Valentines and they get joy from that. Hopefully they don’t get caught up in the popularity aspect of it as they grow. Today however, I will spoil them and enjoy them and thank Hallmark or whoever invented Valentine’s Day!