I know it sounds cliche but as someone who hasn’t had a real Valentine in over 15 years, I can honestly say that this “manaufactured holiday”, in my research is not made up at all. In fact, it is quite inspiring.
From Your Valentine
St. Valentine was a Roman doctor who also was a Priest during the reign of Emperor Claudius. At the time, marriages were outlawed. The Emperor sought men for his army and thought love and marriage would weaken his strong and virile citizens. Secretly, St. Valentine married couples in love, openly defying the law of man, in favor of the law of God. Of course he was caught and sentenced to prison. This did not stop St. Valentine from continuing his mission, if only to share the unconditional love he felt and understood through his faith. In prison, he befriended his cell mate who asked if he would help his daughter, who was blind. Over time, a close bond was created between the daughter, Julia, and St. Valentine. It came to be, that even the Emperor grew to like St. Valentine, and was willing to pardon him, if only he would renounce his faith. St. Valentine refused, and upon his death, had sent Julia a card signed, “from your Valentine.” It was said that Julia’s blindness was cured, so she could read the note, thus eventually giving Valentine his Sainthood.
Love Conquers All – Start With Yourself
While Hallmark and florists seem to dominate this “holiday”, upon researching this story, I realize there are simple truths for anyone to remember regardless of your relationship status.
Unconditional love is not just for parents and children. It begins with oneself. Love thyself. Know thyself. Do not be afraid. Your self-awareness and reflection encourages deeper, more meaningful connections with others. The human condition is more optimistic and empathic, less harsh and judgemental. Your heart becomes more open and compassionate; this behavior becomes normalized.
I always say, perfection is never the goal. Love is a way of life, not just a behavior. We celebrate as a reminder of the choices we have, what we strive for.