Valentine’s Day – The Same as Any Other

When I was single, I hated Valentine’s Day. Don’t we all? You see all your friends with significant others touting their Valentine’s Day plans. They receive roses and chocolates, get all gussied up to go out to eat at really fancy restaurants, and post to Facebook all the reasons why they love Valentine’s Day. When you’re alone, you don’t want to be reminded that you’re alone. I used to hate these people – until I became one of them. Bernie and I are celebrating our second Valentine’s Day together today, and in all honesty, it’s not a big deal.

Last year we went out to eat at a nice restaurant in Boston’s North End neighborhood (little Italy) and had a fantastic meal. We got dressed up, and he surprised me with roses on the table when we got there. It was probably one of the top romantic things he’s done – but the night wasn’t my favorite night we’ve had together – there have been so many more memorable moments that don’t involve this “love” holiday. There’s all this build up to Valentine’s day when you’re a couple and the pressure is pretty ridiculous. “What do you get them? Do they like chocolate? What flowers does she like? Should I get her jewelry? Wow…this meal is going to be EXPENSIVE!”

When you’re in the right relationship, every day, even the mundane ones should feel like Valentine’s day. Bernie is respectful and listens to me and my needs every day. He tells me he loves me every day. He supports every decision I make, good or bad, every day. He makes me laugh really, really hard every day. He shares his life with me every day. He’s my best friend every day.

Well, hello there!

If you’re single, who cares – Valentine’s day should be YOUR day. Your day to love yourself and your life. I know – that sounds so preachy and I bet you’ve read that Cosmo article headline every February 14th, but it’s true. Don’t hate on the people who are doing things with their boyfriends or girlfriends on Valentine’s day. It’s their day, they can do what they want. But it’s your day too. Do something you love. Treat yourself to some chocolate or flowers if you want them. Be your own Valentine, because at some point during the next 364 days, one of those couples you hated on February 14th with break up but you will still have your Valentine :).

Fun facts about V-day:

  • Moms are the best Valentines: My mom used to always be my Valentine. She would leave me and my sister little heart-shaped boxes of chocolates and cards in our bedrooms when we were younger. On Valentine’s Day morning we would open the cards and eat the chocolates. She continued this tradition up until we finished high school and moved out. Love you mom!
  • Things are not always as they seem: You may think that those “perfect Valentine’s Day dates” that your taken friends have are absolutely romantic and perfect…but think again. Last year, we saw a couple in an intense fight while we were waiting for the valet service to bring the car around after dinner. I’m sure a lot of couples go through that – relationship issues don’t stop for Valentine’s day. Yikes.
  • “Romantic” Cards: When Bernie surprised me with roses at our table at the restaurant, I thought “How romantic!”. Then I read the card and it said — “Let’s get drunk so we can fight!” **inside joke**, the romance died and I laughed so hard. It was perfect – for us.

He's always making me laugh.

Tonight, we’re celebrating by just making dinner at home together. No fancy restaurant. No fancy outfits (unless yoga pants and a t-shirt count). I did get him a card and I made him a surprise dessert, which I will post about very soon. Hopefully it turned out okay – it was a new baking experience for me. It’s going to be the perfect night for us; a normal night in together.


How are you celebrating Valentine’s Day? Celebrating with yourself or someone else?


Dating in a City of Single Men

Dating is hard. Dating in college is even harder. In a city that’s population is 30% college students, you would think that it would be easy to find the special person to spend all your free time between classes with. Oh no my friend, this is not so easy. It’s easy to find someone, but it’s not so easy to find the person that is right for you.

I think a mistake a lot of girls make in college (and I am guilty of this too) is that they find a guy and immediately fall for the idea of what he could be to her. You know the feeling – you meet a guy at a party or somewhere, you exchange numbers and hope that he’ll call you. He’s nice, funny, and super cute. Your mind starts going in a million directions. “He’s taller than me, so we’ll look really good in wedding photos.”… “He has really good hair and eyes…I wonder what our kids would look like.” … “I think my mom would REALLY like him!”

WHOA! Slow down there chicka! As college students, I think we’re all in a hurry to grow up. We’re told that we’re adults now, and are responsible for our own lives and decisions. While this is true, I think many girls are in a hurry to find that college boyfriend that they will date and then eventually marry once they leave school. In my grandmother’s time, girls only went to college so that they could meet their future husband. In the 21st century, this is a pretty archaic idea of college and relationships. I found that it took 5 years of college to really find who Sarah really is, so why would you want to force yourself into a relationship when you barely know who you are? So here are the things I learned in college about relationships and love.

  1. Stop wasting your time with assholes. Does he call you constantly for a week and then stop? Have you gone on one or two dates that were nice but not great? Do you only see him after 1 a.m. on the weekends? Do you constantly freak out when he doesn’t text you every few hours? If any of these things asshole characteristics are happening, I hate to break it to you, but he’s just not that into you! When I was in high school, Greg Behrendt’s book He’s Just Not That Into You came out. Even though I was not very experienced in the healthy-relationship front, I read it, and it made sense. A guy who likes you will follow up after dates, introduce you to friends, call you back, and be 100% straight forward with how he feels. Guys ARE easy to understand, ladies. We just have to stop getting in our own way and listen. If he’s an asshole to you, he doesn’t like you enough to date you. Sorry.
  2. Make you a priority. College is all about figuring out who you are, what you believe it, and what you are passionate about. The person I was at 18 entering college was definitely NOT the person I was at 23 graduating. My biggest advice for girls is to have fun in college. Make out drunkenly with a cute guy at a party, but don’t expect him to call you back the next day. It may happen, but it’s not the norm. Enjoy your time. Make great girl and guy friends, join some awesome clubs, focus on school work, and try to figure out you. Relationships work best when you bring your best self forward. You can’t do that if you don’t know yourself yet.
  3. Be open to possibilities. When I met my current boyfriend, I was in a sort of friends-with-benefits relationship with a guy who clearly did not want a commitment. While he told me that he cared about me, we never hung out outside of his apartment, I didn’t meet many of his friends, and we never went on a proper date. A few days before I met my future bf, I realized I needed to stop the shenanigans and drop this guy. Then boom, I met someone who actually wanted to be in a relationship. I didn’t see it coming, and it sort of happened spontaneously. But the lesson is this; if a guy is dragging out along with broken promises that he never really fulfills, walk away. Life is too short to waste any time on someone who can’t make up their mind. If a guy really wants to be with you, he will be with you.

So college dating in a large city full of other single college students is not always easy. Be open, know yourself, and understand when someone isn’t treating you like the amazing person that you are. Someone better who will fully appreciate everything about you (flaws and all) might be right around the corner. In the meantime, enjoy your friends and life!

Girlfriends are the best!